Steel Warehouses

Optimal Storage Facilities at an Economical Price

A pre-engineered steel warehouse building will provide you with the very best value for your investment. In terms of cost and efficiency, ease and flexibility of expansion, insurance and government Green Building incentive eligibility, and long-lasting superior structural integrity and durability – in every sector - pre-engineered steel buildings are the number one choice for warehousing and distribution facilities.

No wonder steel dominates the industrial market with a 95% market share, and is aggressively taking over the commercial market, at a 71% share and climbing.

Why Steel: for Warehouse Buildings

Shorter Construction Time
built faster, start stocking your warehouse sooner
Lower Construction / Material Costs
save 40-60% on construction and material costs
Inexpensive & Easy to Expand
save on warehouse building costs with pre-engineered components
Durable & Weather Resistant
sturdier even in hurricanes and earthquakes, protect your inventory
Energy Efficient
save money on temperature control, maintain ideal storage conditions
Environmentally Responsible
built with recycled material, excellent LEED ratings
Insurance Advantages
save 30-40% on premiums for building with steel
Minimal Maintenance
no work to upkeep, easy to clean; NO cracking, rotting, mold; pest-resistant
Single Source Assurance
warranty on entire structure from one supplier, (typically 25 years)
Attractive Finish
esthetic surface textures and colors, or add brick, masonry, stucco, etc

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An independent article written for Northern Ontario Business magazine clears up the following misconception: “While these steel buildings are called 'pre-engineered,' they are actually 'custom-engineered' and specially designed according to the buyer's specifications.” 'Pre-engineered' refers to the various systems and components that have been carefully designed such that “highly controlled construction (provides) a steel building that is pre-cut and predrilled and is ready for assembly in a time that is much shorter than it would take to construct a conventional building.” 1

As pointed out in the N.O Business article, this single-source assurance, results in “ more accurate measures since a number of different suppliers are not trying to add their materials and measures to the project,” 1 not to mention a comprehensive warranty package that ensures buyers won't be paying for repairs or maintenance of their building for at least 20 years, and sometimes up to 40.

The ultra-precise factory production of steel components ensures that they will fit together seamlessly, allowing for superior energy-efficiency when appropriately insulated (also see our article on how to insulate a steel building). Savings results are twofold: not only do owners save enormous sums of money each year on the cost of interior environmental control (of temperature and humidity), but they also stand to benefit from IRS & government incentives for sustainable practices.

In addition, in a government effort to stimulate business and the economy, the depreciation lifetime for many pre-engineered & modular steel building configurations has been set to an unprecedentedly generous 7-year-span, since many of these buildings can actually be dismantled, moved and re-assembled. This is in comparison to 39 years for buildings of conventional construction. Special thanks and credit goes to Portafab Modular Buildings for publicizing this shrewd and valuable tax strategy ( To put this return on investment in perspective, consider the following:

If you invested in pre-engineered modular warehouse for $40,000, and an equally priced warehouse built using conventional construction methods (which would have to be considerably smaller, and would take much longer to erect, from design to completion to come in at the same price), at the end of 8 years, your modular steel warehouse would accumulate a full, $40,000 Tax Depreciation Deduction, just because it is a modular structure that can be dismantled, moved, and re-assembled – it is still going to outlast the conventional buildings due to steel's durability. Whereas a conventionally constructed warehouse would have only accumulated an $8,200 Depreciation Deduction. If we arbitrarily assume a tax rate of 30%, you are looking at a savings of $12,000 in taxes on your steel warehouse, as compared to a savings of only $2,500 in tax on your conventional warehouse. That is a difference in savings of $9,500. Portafab takes their illustration a step further by computing the returns if that difference (in our example, $9,500) is invested at 8% for the remaining 31 years left on the depreciation life of the conventional warehouse. We'll let you do the math: the conclusion is unavoidable; a pre-engineered steel warehouse just keeps on making you money, and saving you time & energy!

We can't mention the conservation of energy in connection with steel buildings, without touching on the Green Buildings Sustainability Initiative, and LEED. In a recent Buildings magazine article, the American Institute of Steel's Scott Melnick, writes, “if you purchase a wide-flange beam or column in the United States today, you're getting a product produced from about 95-percent scrap material.” LEED will always credit you for building with recycled material. If your fabricator is within 500 miles of a jobsite, then you are typically eligible for additional related LEED credit 2. In fact, building with steel can earn you credits in 5 out of 6 LEED Sustainability categories. For more information about Green Buildings, visit our Blog section for further articles & resources. BuildingsGuide also hopes to produce an article on government incentives and other ways to cash in on the Green Buildings in the near future.

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  1. Taken from the article, “How to Choose a Pre-engineered Building System,” by Pauling Clark, written for Northern Ontario Business Vol. 22 (August 2002), Issue 10, p21
  2. Written by Scott Melnick, Vice President of the American Institute of Steel, and Publisher / Editor for Modern Steel Construction.  His LinkedIn profile is located at: