Anyone ever built a shop/apartment out of a steel building?

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defrag010
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Anyone ever built a shop/apartment out of a steel building?

Post by defrag010 » Sat Feb 13, 2010 8:27 pm

I've been looking for a house here where I'm at right now for a pretty long time, and I'm just getting nowhere. The best deal I could find so far is a 1300 sq.ft 2/1/2 on .25 acre for a "measley" 124k. It's beyond me why houses are so high in the freakin' Arkansas River Valley.
I bought my first house when I was in Tulsa, and it was 1200/3/1/2 on half an acre right down the street from TU for 49k. I sold it in the summer of '08 and had to short sale it for 34k after being for sale for about 6 months. It might just be my pride, but I am NOT paying over 100k for what I would barely call a starter house in a low class neighborhood. I don't know how the lower class people here can afford housing.

Anyways, I have been researching the possibility of finding some little acre-ish sized plot of land here and having one of those steel buildings erected on it and just building a nice living space inside it and use what's left over as my shop. I'm single, so I don't have any girlfriend or wife approval to worry about, and my "standards" aren't very high so even just the basic living arrangement is great by me.

Has anyone done or know anyone that has done this? The cost will be substantially cheaper than buying any house here, and I will have the capacity to not only have a large living space but also a HUGE shop space. I have everything priced out except the construction of the apartment on the inside. I don't know who I should call or what a rough estimate for construction would be. I can do the sheetrock and ceilings, but I would need someone to do the frame work and wiring.

Any input? The size building I priced out is a 50x100x18, with a 1500 sq/ft 2 story apartment inside leaving 3500 sq/ft of shop space.

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Re: Anyone ever built a shop/apartment out of a steel building?

Post by Keith Morganstein » Sat Feb 13, 2010 11:16 pm

As long as it doesn't violate any zoning laws, it seems like an OK plan. Consider having the apartment framed with steel 2x4 studs instead of wood and have fire code Sheetrock separating the living space from the shop. A separate entrance would be a must too. Don't forget the septic system in the estimates. The steel buildings are not difficult to erect either. A friend of mine built his with his son over a few months, mostly working on weekends.

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Re: Anyone ever built a shop/apartment out of a steel building?

Post by Dave Koehler » Sun Feb 14, 2010 8:24 am

A local fellow is doing just that. He discovered there were some awesome property tax advantages to it,... big time. Apparently, it doesn't get zoned and taxed the same as a standalone house.

Why is he doing this? Wife passed a while back. They had a too big for one fancy house along with his big toy shop and the taxes were awful. He decided it was time to escape some memories but what to do about the toy box? Hence the apartment/shop concept.

Dig around this place. There are several car folks doing just this concept. Time waster Warning. There are really neat working shops along with some show garages. Lots to look at.
http://www.garagejournal.com/forum/

I also saw some examples at the Morton Building site.
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Re: Anyone ever built a shop/apartment out of a steel building?

Post by governor » Sun Feb 14, 2010 10:25 am

I have seen this done with the living quarters on a second level. So if you went with a 16ft ceiling, you could have living space above an enclosed clean room that would be seperate from the rest of the shop.

I tried to sell my wife on this type of idea for a new shop and house combo a few years ago, but that went over like a FART in church. LOL

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Re: Anyone ever built a shop/apartment out of a steel building?

Post by Keith Morganstein » Sun Feb 14, 2010 11:37 am

I just remembered an amusing example. I went to buy a used shop heater from the classifieds. When I arrive there is this large, but very run down shop. It was completely filled with junk. You could get one car on a lift. Also inside the shop was a 30 foot camper. It was hooked up with an electrical cord, a garden hose and a PVC sewage pipe. The owner and his wide/girlfriend were living in the camper (inside of the run down, junk filled shop).

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Re: Anyone ever built a shop/apartment out of a steel building?

Post by Cogburn » Sun Feb 14, 2010 11:52 am

My friend just built one and has close to 400000$ in it but he went a little overboard.

I built our 30x40 garage in 2 weeks with help from my friends. Sometime I am going to make the pile of lumber on the floor into a workshop below/man cave above that is 12x40 inside. Mine is a clearspan allsteel from http://www.Worldwidesteelbuildings.com 17ft to the peak inside with 12ft sidewalls. We have about 15k$ into the shell and concrete w/doors and electric service. I installed the electric too. The building came on a truck for around 9k$. At certain times the prices are up to 30% off.

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Re: Anyone ever built a shop/apartment out of a steel buildi

Post by tubeman426 » Mon Feb 03, 2014 10:55 pm

One problem you might consider is resale value, not much market for shop with an apartment.

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Re: Anyone ever built a shop/apartment out of a steel buildi

Post by mbrooks » Tue Feb 04, 2014 7:49 am

I'm in kind of the same boat. i just bought a 2 acre place with some run down buildings on the edge of town, the old man that lived there passed. it is in an area with very high priced property just outside the city limits but in the growth zone, so i ended up buying the place for the cost of the land mostly. i had to buy a dump trailer to haul off the trash/junk and gut the buildings, etc. i'm fixing to put up a building and live in my slide in camper initially, see how that goes. hopefully make the side walls tall enough i can build a lean-to on the side so i can live in the outdoors. nice thing about that, you get tired of the camper and 80 mph down the highway and untie her and go get another. they do make some pretty nice ones that are compact with smoke, fire, and propane detectors, etc., keep them sheltered from the weather and they last a while. good luck.

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Re: Anyone ever built a shop/apartment out of a steel buildi

Post by rfoll » Mon Feb 10, 2014 12:34 pm

Steel buildings like to sweat. If the roof is not done properly, they like to leak. I am contemplating ripping the steel off the roof and doing plywood and composition roofing.
So much to do, so little time...

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Re: Anyone ever built a shop/apartment out of a steel buildi

Post by nickmckinney » Mon Feb 10, 2014 9:09 pm

Haha - new 4300ft shop I just moved into had a live in mom/pop deal in the middle of a warehouse district. Biggest tricks I see here, lots of windows for natural light, and insta-hots on the sink and shower. I burned my hands the first time as I never had hot water in a shop sink before and didn't know it was there.

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Re: Anyone ever built a shop/apartment out of a steel buildi

Post by Adger Smith » Sat Feb 15, 2014 5:11 pm

The "live in" is done a lot in the aviation field. You see buildings around airports that are basic hangers with living quarters.
There are some pretty elaborate living spaces tied to or inside these hangers, esp when you get to Air Park living areas.
I've tried to get my wife on the deal and avoid owning a machine shop at one location and a home and race care shop at another and a hanger for the plane at another. I sometimes pull my hair out trying to remember where I left "That special tool". I sometimes drive for 30 min. & 16 miles round the loop to all locations. It would save time and money to be in one location and I could sell off =D> some engine stands, tools and equipment. No more 3 tool sets.
Yet the wife still wants the home look.. got to keep her happy no matter how practical I can be.. [-X
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Re: Anyone ever built a shop/apartment out of a steel buildi

Post by Ed Wright » Tue Mar 04, 2014 2:35 pm

A friend of mine here in Tulsa did just that. Very nice home up front, and race car shop in the back. A church just went up a couple of miles from my home. It is a steel building, but you would never know it now. I see that all the time around here. They don't have to look like a steel building anymore.
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Re: Anyone ever built a shop/apartment out of a steel buildi

Post by Krooser » Fri Apr 04, 2014 6:03 pm

After I got divorced in the late 70's I rented a 3400 sq. ft. steel building to use for my race car parts business and living quarters.

I built a 400 sq. ft. 'showroom' and used that for my living quarters. It was legal for zoning, too. I had two neighbors in the same complex who did the same deal...
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Re: Anyone ever built a shop/apartment out of a steel buildi

Post by blockislandguy » Sat May 24, 2014 1:55 pm

I've seen wooden boat nuts up in mid-coast Maine build two story 'homes' with a large barn door at one end of the first floor to get their boat in and out.

Whatever you do, make it reversible so you can later resell it. After all, the cost of something is not what you paid for it but the difference between what you paid for it and what you can later sell it for. Porsche guys know this. Guys who restore/rebuild obsolete machine tools like S V 85B's don't.

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Re: Anyone ever built a shop/apartment out of a steel buildi

Post by nickmckinney » Sat May 24, 2014 5:07 pm

blockislandguy wrote: After all, the cost of something is not what you paid for it but the difference between what you paid for it and what you can later sell it for.
Wrong the cost of something is:

What you paid for it initially MINUS what you sell it for PLUS what money it brings in during the time you own it MINUS what you pay to maintain and use it. Doesn't matter if its a house or an "obsolete machine tool like an SV85B"

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