Quonset Hut Homes Pros & Cons: Is It Right For Your Home Plans?

With minimalist living on the rise, Quonset hut homes have been gaining popularity as more and more people seek to downsize and simplify their lives. But is this the right house plan for you? Before making a decision, let's look at some benefits and drawbacks.

Benefits of Quonset hut homes:

  • Cost effective
  • DIY build
  • Durable
  • Open floor plan
  • Shed moisture

Drawbacks of Quonset hut homes:

  • Low amount of headroom
  • Learning curve for build
  • Loud when it rains
  • Needs good insulation

As you can see, there are several pros and cons of Quonset hut homes to consider. To help you out, we will discuss each benefit and drawback to help your buying decision. In addition, we will answer other frequently asked questions about Quonset hut homes, so read on!

Vintage Quonset hut tiny home building, corrugated metal weathered old house, Quonset Hut Homes Pros & Cons: Is It Right For Your Home Plans?

Is A Quonset Hut Home Right For You?

Quonset hut homes have a long and storied history dating back to their origins in World War II.

These unique homes were designed to be easily assembled and disassembled, making them perfect for military applications. After the war, Quonset huts became popular as low-cost housing options, and they can still be found in use today.

In addition, they are a good alternative to tiny homes, yurts, and other small living options. But you still have to weigh the pros and cons of Quonset hut homes before making your decision. Use this list to help you make an informed choice:

A farm storage tin quonset with a bright red door, surrounded by trees and a golden wheat field, in the beautiful vibrant Idaho country, on a warm summers day.

Benefits Of Quonset Hut Homes

Here are the benefits of Quonset hut homes:

Cost Effective

Quonset hut homes are quite affordable compared to other types of homes. The average cost of a Quonset hut home is around $15,000, which is significantly lower than the cost of a traditional home.

Of course, you can order some that have more rooms and bedrooms, but the average price is still quite low. On the other hand, a Quonset hut home might be perfect if you want to downsize or live a more minimalist lifestyle.

DIY Build

Another great perk of Quonset hut homes is that you can often build them yourself. So, if you are handy and have some construction experience, you should be able to put one of these homes together with relative ease.

There are kits available that contain all the materials and instructions you need to construct your own Quonset hut home. This can save you a lot of money on labor costs and is also a great way to get some hands-on experience with building your own home.

Since the cost to purchase one is low, you might also be able to get a contractor to build it for you if you do not feel comfortable doing it yourself.


As we mentioned earlier, the military first used Quonset huts, so they had to be durable. Due to their commercial-grade steel material, these homes can withstand some pretty extreme weather conditions, including high winds and heavy rains.

If you live in an area that is prone to hurricanes or tornadoes, then a Quonset hut home might be a good option for you. They are also a good choice if you want to build in a remote location that is not accessible by traditional construction methods.

Open Floor Plan

One of the great things about Quonset hut homes is that they often have an open floor plan. This can give you a lot of freedom when it comes to interior design and layout.

If you want, you can leave the walls open and use them as storage space or office space. Or, you can partition off the rooms to create a more traditional home layout.

Either way, you will have plenty of space to work with when you choose a Quonset hut home.

Shed Moisture

Due to their half-cylinder shape, Quonset hut homes are very good at shedding moisture. This means that they are less likely to experience leaks or water damage during heavy rains.

Not only does this make them more durable but it also makes them easier to maintain. As a result, you won't have to worry as much about snow buildup or leaves clogging your gutters.

Drawbacks Of Quonset Hut Homes

Now that we've covered the benefits, let's take a look at the drawbacks of Quonset hut homes:

Limited Headroom

Due to a Quonset hut home's round shape, the headroom and usable space can be quite limited. This can make some people feel a bit claustrophobic, especially if you are tall.

This can also put a damper on storage space. If you want to store taller items, then you might have to get creative with your storage solutions.

Of course, you can always partition off the rooms to create more headroom, but this will come at the expense of some of your open floor space.

Learning Curve For Build

While some might be up for the challenge, constructing a Quonset hut home can be quite difficult. If you have never built anything before, you might want to hire a professional to help you.

Even if you are experienced with construction, putting one of these homes together can be a bit tricky. This is because there are a lot of different parts and pieces that need to fit together perfectly.

If you are not careful, then you might end up with a home that is not as durable as it should be. As result, they can leak.

Loud When It Rains

Another drawback of Quonset hut homes is that they can be quite loud when it rains. This is due to their metal material which amplifies the sound of the raindrops hitting the roof. If you are looking for a peaceful and quiet home, then a Quonset hut might not be your best option.

Not Insulated

While Quonset hut homes do a good job keeping the heat in, you should still be aware that they are not naturally insulated.

This means you will have to take extra steps to insulate your home if you want to keep it warm during the winter months. A popular method is to use spray foam insulation which can be applied directly to the metal walls.

This is just an added cost you should be aware of if you consider a Quonset hut home.

Vintage WW 2 Quonset hut, tiny home building, corrugated metal weathered old house, alternative affordable housing

How Long Do Quonset Huts Last?

WWII quonset huts at Randolph Field, San Antonio, Texas. 1949. Kodachrome scanned film with grain.

The lifespan of a Quonset hut can be quite long, especially when assembled correctly. It's not uncommon for a Quonset hut to last 100 years or more with proper maintenance.

Of course, the lifespan will depend on the quality of materials used and how well it is cared for over the years.

Also, the turmoil it endures will also play a role. For example, a Quonset hut located in an area with severe weather conditions will not last as long as one that is built in a more moderate environment.

No matter how long it lasts, you can be sure that a Quonset hut will give you many years of use.

How Long Does It Take To Build A Quonset Hut Home?

If you can get a handful of people together who all have a basic understanding of construction, then you should be able to have your Quonset hut home built in a week or less.

Of course, this could be longer depending on the customization such as flooring, insulation, storage, kitchen, plumbing, and more that you want to add to your hut home.

Even if it took a month, that's a lot quicker than a traditional home, which can often take months or even years to complete.

Now, it will obviously take a bit longer if you are doing the hut home yourself without any help. But, it is still possible to have it done in a reasonable amount of time.

Prairie Quonset with fallen down house

Can You Paint Quonset Hut Homes?

While the metal material of Quonset hut homes gives them a unique look, some people might find it a bit too industrial for their taste.

If you are one of those people, then you will be happy to know that you can paint your hut home to give it a more personalized look. Just keep in mind that you will need paint made for metal surfaces in order to get the best results.

Nonetheless, painting your Quonset hut home will add an extra layer of protection to the structure. Plus, it will allow you to create the exact look that you want for your home.

Can You Add A Garage To A Quonset Home?

If you don't want to build a separate garage for your Quonset hut home, you can simply add a garage door to the structure.

There are kits that come with everything you need, such as the frame, door, and hardware. Just keep in mind that this will obviously take up some of the space inside your hut home.

Of course, you can always build a detached garage for your Quonset hut home. This will give you more flexibility with the layout and design of your property.

Final Thoughts

Whether or not a Quonset hut home is right for you will ultimately come down to your personal preferences. Hopefully, the benefits and drawbacks listed above have helped you decide if this type of home is right for you.

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