Updated: Apr 9
You've seen them, I've seen them, everyone's seen them.
They're the groups that are 100,000+ strong, with folks bickering back and forth about everything from basements to spray foam. Keyboard warriors from all walks of life convene on these pages to lecture each other with extreme snoodiness over their taste in decor, flooring, light placement, and barn shape. My personal favorite is the people who don't have experience but have a TON of opinions that they share as fact, for example...
I once enjoyed an evening of MMA style FB (facebook) fighting over the proper way to trim a window on metal siding. Both combatants went on about the right sealant to use, how to cut a corner, and ultimately it boiled down to this: neither of us have actually done this in real life, but if we had, we would have done it ever-so-slightly differently from each other, and had we done it the other guy's way, the entire house would've fallen in on itself within 5 years.
Don't get me wrong, these groups are a great way to gather information, talk about experiences with contractors, and share tips that we've gotten during our build... but they ARE NOT a substitute for advice from industry/subject matter experts.
What about those "Barndominiums under 100k" groups? Just a couple of weeks ago, I was personally banned from one of those pages. Here's why...
I saw a home posted by the owner/admin of one of those groups and I know exactly who the home belongs to. So, when I read on the initial post "click the link to get the floor plans and cost to build", I jumped into action. Every single comment made was met with a copy/pasted message from me linking the owner's build page and telling the commenter to direct their questions there. There's no way in hell the owner was just giving away the floor plans.
After a little scrolling, I saw several more recognizable homes posted with the same scammy lines, "click the link to get the floor plans and cost to build". Most of the homes posted were at one point listed for sale on Zillow or belonged to folks who post a lot on Instagram, so there were tons of photos ripe for stealing. It's unfortunate, but someone is making a lot of money in ad traffic by doing this and only God knows what they're doing with the emails and other information they collect.
Groups like those, running scams like that, are part of the reason we started BarndominiumTour.com. We strive to bring you real and reliable information from actual barndominium owners and builders, so you can be confident when you take on your own project.
I know you're going to hop on FaceBook and go right back to those groups...
Here's a few red flags to look out for, if the page is doing these things, run.
The only person posting in the group regularly, is the person who owns the group
This indicates that the group is only active to serve the owner's needs, usually its just a way for someone to drive traffic to their own website (which they make money on per visitor). In my experince, the websites theyre driving you to arent run by people in the US, and they contain AI written articles of zero substance. I wouldnt waste my time.
The group requires your email to let you in
Your email is valuable information, and the type of group youre willing to give your email away to join, is also valuable information. The person running the group is likely compiling an email list so they can send you tons of spam, spam that they're being paid to send you, if they send anything at all. Its more likely that they're selling their email lists to advertisers and moving on to the next thing.
To get more info about posts, you have to give them your email
Again, this is a scam to get your email. RUN
People in the comments are claiming that the house pictured is theirs, and they didn't give permission to share
This is the biggest red flag for me. Can you imagine, youre going about your day and someone sends you an article or post with pictures of the inside of your home...and someone is claiming its theirs, they built it, or they can sell you the plans. I don't know about you, but that would totally freak me out. This is likely another scam to drive traffic to their page or website, or even worse, they actually "sell" you something and walk away with your money.
There you have it! You don't have to give up on those groups all together, but scroll with caution! I hope this insider info gives you the tools to spot scams and protect yourself from nafarious actors in the barndo-sphere. As always, thank you for reading. Every article clicked, photo shared, and email opened from BarndominiumTour.com supports us and is greatly appreciated.
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