Frequently Asked Questions

I am just now starting to look for a property. What are some things to be looking for if I plan to add a shop or a barn?
  • What will the building be used for?
  • How much space do I need?
  • How tall should it be?
  • What door sizes will work?
  • Do I want windows?
  • Where will it go on my property?
  • What materials do I prefer? (metal, wood, etc.)
  • Site preparation is a consideration which has a large potential impact on overall cost. The less ground work you require the lower your project cost.
  • What is the access to power, water and other utilities?
  • How much work will need to be performed to access the site. Driveway etc…?
  • Is the zoning appropriate for your use? Will you need to get a variance?
  • What are your long term plans for the property? Will you want to subdivide at some future date? Is this allowed?
Are your trusses built on site?

Most often the truss is pre-engineered and built off site. This gives a more uniform finished product. There are situations where we will build the truss on site. One reason is if there is difficult access and we are unable to bring the truss on site completed.

What happens next?
  • Start with a phone call or email or schedule a visit to stop in our office.
  • Share your ideas and requirements.
  • Discuss with us the options.
  • Your Spane Representative will work up a proposal based on your wants and needs.
  • You will review it and if it meets with your approval you will sign the contract and make the modest deposit.
  • At this point our draftsman will make a site visit and verify the location of the building. A site plan will be required.
  • Engineered drawings are completed and you review once more for any changes. This is important since changes are more easily addressed at this point.
  • After any changes are made the permit appointment is made. We carry the application to the appropriate agency and submit for approval.
  • After review the permit is issued. and any conditions are met, we are ready to start.
  • Any site preparation should be made at this point. Once the site is satisfactory we will mobilize onto the job site.
I need help financing my new building. Is that something Spane Buildings can help with?

We do have relationships with lenders for financing some of our buildings. On larger projects especially those with a residential component you may wish to secure a line of credit or a construction loan. While we do not provide this type of lending we would cooperate and coordinate with your lender as needed.

I see Spane Buildings makes some pretty fancy buildings. All I want is a simple shop. Is that something you would do?

Absolutely! We build everything from simple garages to elaborate homes. Even the simplest designs include all elements of a complete building. Things which may be overlooked by others including complete trim, full overhangs, and posts set in concrete footings. “Basics and Beyond” is a phrase associated with Spane Buildings. Our heritage began with agriculture and dairy farm buildings. This is still a large part of our business.

I have an old barn and I would like to make some repairs and maybe restore it. Can Spane help me?

Yes, we regularly perform re-sides or re-roofs on existing structures. Our experts can work with you to “save” your older building, preserving it for generations to come.

What other services do you offer?

Spane Buildings has a full construction team for conventional construction and remodel, as well as our post frame construction teams.

  • Roofing
  • Gutters
  • Siding
  • Concrete (patio, carport, decorative)
Can I see your crew in action?

Yes! We can arrange for a site visit. Your safety is important, please contact us before entering a job site.

How about looking at a finished building similar to the one I want to build?

Yes! In fact we encourage it. You may even find something you hadn’t thought of that we should incorporate into your design.

I want to have a finished area in the new building, maybe a bathroom, can you help with this?

We can include the feature in the plans and we would be able to handle rough framing for the space. However we do not manage sub trades (plumbing, electrical, fixtures or interior finishes). You would need to coordinate those items.

Who applies for the permit?

Once we have prepared the engineered drawings we will submit for your permit. You are responsible for the fees. The cost for the permitting process varies widely and is determined to a great degree by the property. The time for your permit to be issued can vary widely as well. We do all we can to help expedite the process. We have good working relationships with all of the agencies we deal with. Once approved, we will pick up the completed permit and advise you to complete the site preparations. We schedule our crew to begin construction as soon as the site work is done.

How long does it take to construct my new building?
  • Every building is different; however you will likely be surprised at how quickly things progress from this point on. Our crew will lay out the building location and set the posts.After the posts are complete the framing begins, followed by the roof and siding, windows and door framing.
  • Inspections are made along the way as required by the building department.
  • Once the floor is poured (if included) and doors are installed you will be asked to inspect the building to make sure it meets with your satisfaction. Only then is the project complete.
What is a “pole building”?

A pole building or post frame construction differs from conventional framing in that the main foundation element of the building is the post. The posts are set in the ground in concrete and act as the main frame support for the building. This building technique is a variation of post and beam construction and has been widely used since about 1930. One advantage of this method of construction is the time involved to complete the building. It also is a time proven method for strength and longevity. Spane Buildings has been building post frame buildings since 1945.

There are several builders who seem to specialize in pole buildings. Is there a difference in the way they build?

Absolutely! At Spane Buildings we recognize customers have many choices, but we believe we offer the best choice. Why?

  • Experience – Experience matters. Spane has been building post frame buildings since 1945.
  • Building Techniques – From using visqueen under the slab to setting posts in concrete to including overhang on eaves and gable ends. You would think this would be standard in the industry. You want to verify that this is being provided.
  • Materials used – We only use materials that have proven to stand the test of time. From the lumber selection to the metal roofing and siding materials, only the highest quality materials make it into a Spane building.
  • Quality of workmanship – Craftsmen. That is who we are. Our team is made up of employees with a long history of experience in this specialty trade.
  • Timeliness – On budget, on time, every time. More than a slogan. This is what you can expect from Spane Buildings.
I have a friend who is a carpenter. He says he can build my building real cheap. Why not save a few bucks? Why use a licensed contractor?

When you hire someone to work on your property and they are not licensed you assume the responsibility of the employer. Along with that comes all of the liability attached to that role. What happens if your employee gets hurt on the job? Worse yet what if their actions hurt someone else? Don’t count on your homeowners’ policy to bail you out in this situation. When you hire anyone other than a licensed (and fully compliant) contractor to work on your property you become the contractor. Think about it. Are you ready for that responsibility, exposure and risk? For the vast majority of us this is a non starter. Only use a licensed contractor.

How do I select the best licensed contractor for my project?

Just having a license does not guarantee a satisfactory result. There are plenty of licensed drivers causing accidents every day. Being licensed does not make you competent. Here are a few suggestions:

  • If you got the idea for your project from seeing a similar one, ask who did the work.
    If you know someone who had the same work performed and was happy with the outcome, ask who did the work.
  • If you got the idea for your project from an ad or a TV show, you have more work to do.
    Locate several potential contractors and get to know them.
  • Are they professional in every way?
  • Can you see examples of their completed work?
    Can you speak to their references?
  • Can you visit a job underway to observe the work conditions?
  • Have you checked their background?
  • Are they endorsed by any trade associations?
  • Ask for an example of when something went wrong and how they corrected it. (this is what separates the lucky from the highest character)
  • If you are financing the project, will the contractor pass muster with the lender? Most people have no idea that your lender looks as close or more closely at the contractor and his background and finances than yours. If he doesn’t pass, you don’t get approved.
  • If you are dealing with a specialty, is the contractor specialized in the right area?

Remember; it is your project, your money, your time and your joy or aggravation at stake. Do your due diligence and you will improve the odds of a satisfactory outcome.

How can I verify a contractor has a license?

Washington State Labor & Industries maintains a list of all licensed contractors in the state.

What is the BBB?

Visit the
Better Business Bureau
(BBB) for answers to frequently asked questions.

How can I see a contractor's rating?
What about references?

It is always good to ask for references in order to assess how a contractor has performed on past projects.. We recommend asking for references on projects similar to those you are planning to build. Be certain the refernces come from recently-completed projects, as well as projects from several years ago. This way you can see how the owner feels about their building after five or ten years. We also recommend visiting projects currently under construction in order to gain an idea of what to expect on your project’s job site. In particular, look at the cleanliness and organization of the jobsite.

What is a Construction Lien? How does it affect me?

Under Washington laws, those who work on your property or provide materials and are not paid have a right to enforce their claim for payment against your property. This claim is known as a construction lien. People who supply materials or labor ordered by your contractor are permitted by law to file a lien only if they do so within 90 days of cessation of performance or delivery of materials. See RCW 60.04.091 Before making final payment on the project , request a completed lien release form from each contractor and material supplier. A sample of this release of lien form is available from the Department of Labor and Industries, Contractor Registration Section.

If you receive a notice to enforce a lien, take the notice seriously. Let your contractor know you have received the notice. Find out what arrangements are being made to pay the sender of the notice. When in doubt, or if you need more details, consult your attorney. When and how to pay your contractor is a decision that requires serious consideration. Remember: You have the final responsibility for seeing that all bills are paid even if you have paid your contractor in full!