Winter 2024

Barnhouse Custom Homes

Words by Megan Litts


or builder Gardner Leaver of Barnhouse Custom Homes, using reclaimed barn wood to construct modern homes was a natural progression in his career journey. Growing up, Gardner’s father owned a business that removed dilapidated barns from properties around the Montauk, New York, area. In 2006, Gardner and his father combined their skills to build their first home using reclaimed timber from local barns. This experience, coupled with Gardner’s later role as a construction manager, sparked the inspiration to grow his love for construction and sustainable design into a successful business.

For Barnhouse Custom Homes, “creativity is important, and no project is the same,” whether it’s full-on rustic or entirely modern. Designs range from the traditional gambrel barn-style to innovative combinations of modified timber and pre-engineered steel, striking a harmonious balance between the old and the new. Primarily sourcing reclaimed wood from the Northeast, the Leaver family maintains a connection with an old friend in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, who scouts for old barns to be repurposed. These barns undergo a thorough evaluation to ensure the majority of the material is still viable, after which they are transported to a warehouse in Louisburg, Kansas, for restoration and use in construction.

Nearly a decade has passed since Gardner and his wife, Amy, relocated to Kansas City and embarked on their entrepreneurial journey. Today, Barnhouse Custom Homes has an entire team dedicated to designing and crafting artisanal barn-style homes that fulfill their clients’ dreams. Although most clients arrive with only a vague concept of their desired home, the team invests months of diligent effort to transform these aspirations into tangible dream homes made of reclaimed beauty and modern design.



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