Affordable Chicken Coop Ideas: Budget-Friendly Solutions for Your Flock
Our top pick for affordable chicken coop design in the Producer’s Pride Sentinel Chicken Coop, thanks to its quality construction and extendable roost bar feature.
For us, it was the obvious choice for anyone looking for a highly capable coop.
This post explores some budget-friendly chicken coop ideas before reviewing the best-value products currently on the market.
We also explain how to construct a simple A-frame hen house using materials you might have lying around your home.
Budget-Friendly Chicken Coop Ideas
Keeping the cost of your chicken coop down is essential if you’re on a budget or have hundreds of birds in your flock. Buying multiple henhouses can get expensive fast!
Fortunately, this section presents some budget-friendly chicken coop ideas you can try straight away. It’s time to start saving money!
Straw Bale Coop Extension
If you have a limited budget, one option is to extend your coop using straw bales. If you live on a farm, you likely have some of these lying around already.
Straw bales are easy to arrange and chickens can’t jump or fly over them if they are more than a couple of feet.
Just don’t forget to put your chickens back in the coop in the evening. Bales won’t keep them safe from predators.
Upcycle Nesting Boxes
Another option is to try upcycling your nesting boxes. Innovative chicken owners use all sorts of things, from washing up bowls sunk into old chair frames to drawers stapled to the coop wall.
Ideally, you want a box that’s 12 inches cubed or larger. Don’t worry: chickens aren’t fussy about the quality of the interior design as long as it is secure.
Use Foraged Items As Coop Accessories
Another tactic is to use foraged items as coop accessories; think branches for roosting bars and rocks as water holders.
You can also sprinkle a few dried leaves in your coop for enrichment. Chickens love pecking safe, natural items, exploring them with their beaks.
Share The Cost Of Materials
Teaming up with other chicken enthusiasts in your area and building a shared coop is another tactic you could try.
Sharing materials costs can bring down the price significantly and enables everyone in the community to benefit from the collective hen house.
One group, the Egg Share Cooperative, constructed a hen house in Greenfield, MA.
Eighteen chickens spent part of the winter in a shared coop instead of returning to their regular homesteads.
And it all happened because the community came together and used the initiative to improve food security for deprived local people.
Use Recycled Materials
Another way to reduce the cost of your hen house is to use recycled materials. Storage units, playhouses, and old sheds are excellent skeletons for building quality henhouses.
One funky idea is to convert an old wardrobe into something that will accommodate chickens, as shown by the Thrifty Couple.
Other ideas include:-
- Converting an old chest of drawers
- Putting chicken wire over a stripped-down car frame
- Recycling a cylindrical water tank
- Using a trampoline frame as a run
- Building a coop using old wooden pallets
- Converting an old swing set frame
- Using an old satellite dish as a coop or run roof
- Converting a fixed-frame gazebo
- Repurposing a dog house
As you can see, the list of ideas is practically endless once you get going. Just use your imagination and see what your mind comes up with.
Use Old Materials
Finally, look around and ask if you could use any old materials for your chicken coop. Leftover building items, salvaged wood, and rolls of wire can all come in handy.
Affordable Chicken Coop Designs
But what if you don’t want to build a chicken coop from scratch? Then what? Which are the most affordable chicken coop designs? Let’s take a look.
Best Overall: Producer’s Pride Sentinel Chicken Coop
Coming in at the top of our list of affordable chicken coops is Producer’s Pride Sentinel Chicken Coop.
While it might not have a bargain basement price, it can house up to six birds and comes with a safe, walk-in run.
With a total area of more than 19 square feet and an extended roosting bar, it’s the perfect palace for your little cluckers.
- Sturdy construction
- Wire mesh protection to keep predators out
- Extendable roosting bar
- Tight space for six hens
- No roof insulation
Best Value: Best Choice Products 80-Inch Wooden Chicken Coop
Our best-value option is the Best Choice Products 80-inch Wooden Chicken Coop, a relatively budget-friendly coop for any backyard chicken owner.
As the name suggests, the henhouse is 80 inches long and over 26 inches tall, making it the right size for two to four hens.
It’s not too big, which means you can put it out of the way in a corner somewhere, but also not too small that your birds will start to feel claustrophobic.
Additional perks include the slide-out bedding tray, built-in nesting boxes, and sliding nesting box trays for easy egg access.
- Exceptionally well-priced
- Not large enough for bigger flocks
- Wood requires regular treating
Best Affordable Large Chicken Coop: Pets Imperial Large Chicken Coop
Pets Imperial Large Chicken Coop provides ample space for up to 10 birds. The run features a galvanized metal pull-out tray, full fox-proofing, and two nest boxes with six compartments and four perches.
The coop is 4 feet, 9 inches wide and 3 feet, 3 inches deep, and comes with a 4-foot 6-inch run.
The latest model has an openable roof, making it easy to access all parts of the coop, combating red mites and other parasites to keep your birds healthy.
Finally, Pets Imperial’s coop is ergonomic and makes the best use of space. Doors and flaps open without intruding on the surroundings.
- Fox-proof design
- Two nest boxes and four perches included
- Ergonomic, space-saving design
- Arrives flat-packed
- Poor customer service
Frugal Ways to Build a Chicken Coop: The A-Frame Chicken Coop Design
DIY designs let you lower the cost of building chicken coops even more. Doing it yourself is often incredibly cheap (or almost free if you salvage or repurpose most materials).
And the A-frame chicken coop design is perhaps the cheapest and easiest of the bunch. Here’s how to make it:
1. Gather your materials and tools
The first step is to gather the materials and tools you need.
You’ll want treated lumber for the frame, some plywood or treated exterior siding, screws, nails, a saw, drill, tape measure, set square, level, and work gloves.
2. Plan the dimensions
The first step is to plan the dimensions of the coop. Most DIYers build a typical A-frame coop 4 feet wide at the base and 6 feet long.
However, you can adjust these dimensions according to the number of chickens you want to keep. If you have a larger flock, you’ll want a longer and wider design.
3. Build the frame
The next step is to construct the frame. It will provide the entire structure with rigidity to support the panels.
Design the frame on the computer first and work out what angle to cut each piece of wood. Then, assemble all the wooden pieces and attach them with long screws or nails.
Your A-frame should have two A-shapes at either end and preferably one in the middle. It should also have wood support running around the base for strength.
4. Add The Roof And Siding
Once that’s done, you’re ready to add the roofing and siding. Most people choose corrugated metal for the roofing, but you can use another waterproof material if one is available.
Plywood is suitable for the siding and floors. Simply nail it to the frame and then treat it with safe sealant on the inside and outside.
5. Install Nesting Boxes And Perches
The next step is to attach the nesting boxes. Adding them to the side of the coop is easy, and you can do it with simple wooden hinges.
You can also add perches for chickens to roost. Try attaching them at various heights throughout the frame horizontally. (You can always adjust them later if your chickens aren’t fond of your design).
6. Apply Finishing Touches
Finally, you’ll want to apply the finishing touches. Attach the door with hinges and a latch for easy access.
Add a ramp, if necessary, to enable chickens to enter. Furnish the coop with bedding, such as straw or wood shavings, and place your feeders and waterers in accessible locations.
Try Cheap Chicken Coop Ideas Yourself
Exploring a variety of budget-friendly materials and designs, you can implement chicken coop ideas cheap without compromising on the comfort of your birds. All it takes is a little inventiveness!
Alternatively, if you aren’t a DIY whizz, you can buy affordable hen houses, ready-made.
Our favorite was the Producer’s Sentinel Chicken Coop but there are plenty of ultra-affordable coops to choose from especially if you have a small flock.