Cheap Chicken Coop Ideas for 2023

Cheap chicken coop ideas are essential for poultry enthusiasts who aim to balance budget and practicality. Remember, chicken coops are more than just shelters for your flock. They serve as your chickens’ safe haven, a nesting area, and a retreat during inclement weather. Constructing one doesn’t mean you have to break the bank. As someone who’s budget-conscious, I’ve gathered cost-effective strategies to help you save money on your chicken coop.

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Understanding Chicken Coops

Just like you and me, chickens crave a sanctuary they can call home, a haven where they feel safe from predators and shielded from harsh weather. This is where our cheap chicken coop ideas come into play. Just think of it as designing the chicken equivalent of our snug and comfy homes but with a budget-friendly twist.

A chicken coop isn’t just a place to snooze, though that’s pretty important, too. It’s also where your hens will lay their eggs. So, within the coop, you’ll need to have nesting boxes. These boxes need to be comfortable, quiet, and dark– the perfect environment for a hen to lay her eggs. Chickens also need room to roam, peck, and scratch so your coop should have a section for this– it’s called the run. Think of it as your chicken’s personal playground.

Of course, the chicken coop also provides shelter from bad weather. Whether it’s scorching heat, heavy rains, or freezing snow, the coop is your chickens’ first line of defense. That’s why it’s crucial to build a coop that can withstand your local weather conditions.

Cheap Chicken Coop Ideas to Consider

You know those old wooden pallets that have been gathering dust in your yard, or that old shed that hasn’t seen much action recently? Well, you’re sitting on a goldmine of resources there. These could be just the ticket for your next DIY a chicken coop project.

It’s easier than you might think to repurpose these items. With a few alterations here and there, that pile of forgotten wood can become a cozy and safe space for your feathered friends. The beauty of this project is its simplicity and thriftiness. You won’t need a whole lot of fancy tools or materials, just a bit of ingenuity and elbow grease.

Chickens aren’t exactly design critics. They don’t care if their new abode isn’t the latest chic design or if the color scheme isn’t trending this season. All they really need is a secure place where they can roost, lay eggs, and be safe from predators and harsh weather conditions.

So why not roll up your sleeves and get started? Not only will you be providing your chickens with a new home, but you’ll also be making the most out of materials you already have. It’s one of those cheap chicken coop ideas that’s as eco-friendly as it is economical. And trust me, nothing beats the satisfaction of building something useful out of what was once considered scrap.

Wooden Pallet Coop

One of my all-time favorites is the wooden pallet coop. With some basic woodworking skills, you can turn discarded pallets into a functional and cheap chicken coop. All you’ll need are those wooden pallets, a handful of nails, a few tools like a hammer and a saw, perhaps a sturdy pair of gloves for safety and a Saturday afternoon. It’ll be an engaging and rewarding DIY project that will give you a great sense of achievement by the end.

wood pallet chicken coop

You could deck out your chicken abode with a sturdy corrugated roof, or perhaps a stylish shingled, slanted roof. Set it on a solid concrete block base, or charm up your backyard with a bungalow-style hen house. Remember, including a nesting box, bedding, and a feeder are essential components.

Old Sheds & Playhouses

Old sheds or playhouses can serve as the perfect starting point for creating an affordable, yet comfortable, chicken coop. Rather than letting these structures sit idly and gather dust, why not breathe new life into them?

Start by giving these old structures a good clean. You’d be surprised by the amount of hidden space you could uncover with a bit of decluttering. Removing unwanted items, sweeping out the dust, and scrubbing the corners can often create a spacious and clean area that’s ready to welcome your feathered friends.

After you’ve cleaned up, it’s time for a bit of creative partitioning. Depending on the size of the shed or playhouse, consider dividing the space into different zones. A designated area for roosting and another for feeding helps in maintaining order within the coop. And it gives your chickens a sense of routine, which is always good for their overall wellbeing.

Next comes the crucial bit: adding nesting boxes. This is where your hens will lay their eggs. Depending on the size of your flock, you might need a few. Remember, the goal is to make each hen feel secure and comfortable. These boxes can be as simple as wooden crates padded with straw.

But don’t stop there! Why not spruce up the place with some chicken-friendly decor? Maybe a nice coat of non-toxic paint or some DIY decorations that your chickens can interact with? This isn’t just for the chickens. It’s also about making the coop a nice feature in your garden.

In essence, the transformation of an old shed or playhouse into a functional chicken coop is not only an economical choice, it also adds a sense of charm to your backyard. Before you know it, you’ll have created a chicken haven that’s the talk of the neighborhood.

old shed chicken coop

With a bit of tidying up, some clever partitioning, and the inclusion of cozy nesting boxes, even old sheds or playhouses can be transformed into an excellent, ready-to-use chicken coop.

Pre-Fabricated Chicken Coops

But what if you’re not the DIY type? No worries. There are cheap pre-fabricated chicken coops available in the market. They come with instructions for easy assembly and all the required parts. Just remember, you often get what you pay for, so ensure it ticks all the boxes in terms of safety and comfort for your birds.

pre fabricated chicken coop

Pre-fabricated chicken coops offer a quick, convenient, and often stylish solution for housing your flock, making them a perfect choice for those seeking a hassle-free, ready-to-install poultry home.

Considerations for Choosing a Cheap Chicken Coop

Finding a cheap chicken coop is a win, but it’s not all about the price. You should take into consideration the size and space of the coop, especially if you’re planning to expand your flock. Each chicken requires 4 square feet, so keep that in mind.

Safety from predators is another crucial factor. Check if the coop is sturdy enough to keep out raccoons, foxes, and other potential threats.

The coop should also be well-ventilated to prevent overheating in summer and well-lit so your chickens can lay eggs efficiently. Finally, ensure it’s easy to clean because a clean coop is a healthy coop.

Making Your Chicken Coop More Efficient

Ever thought about incorporating automatic feeders and waterers into your cheap chicken coop ideas? They’re like the 24/7 diner of the chicken world. Your flock can eat and drink whenever they want, which means less stress for them and less work for you. And remember, less stress for the chickens means more and better-quality eggs.

There are several accessories that can also make your chicken coop more efficient. Nesting box curtains, for example, can give your hens privacy and reduce egg-eating behavior. Adding a chicken run to your coop not only provides exercise for your hens but it can also reduce conflict in the coop due to overcrowding. Plus, it helps in keeping the coop clean.

Also, regular maintenance goes a long way. Fix any broken parts immediately, maintain proper ventilation, and remember to clean the coop frequently.

If you’re in an area with fluctuating temperatures, insulation is key. It’s not just for keeping your flock warm in the winter, but it can also help to keep the coop cool in the summer. Proper insulation makes a world of difference to the comfort and productivity of your hens.


Can I use an old dog house as a chicken coop? Absolutely, provided it’s spacious enough and safe for your chickens.

What’s the cheapest material to build a chicken coop? Wooden pallets are one of the cheapest and most accessible materials.

How many nesting boxes do I need in my chicken coop? Typically, one nesting box for every 3-4 hens works well.

What should be the size of my chicken coop? As a rule, provide at least 4 square feet of space per chicken inside the coop.

Do chicken coops need windows? Yes, windows provide light and ventilation, which are essential for the health of your chickens.

Kate King

Kate King

My experiences in sustainable living aim to contribute positively to our environment and community. This shared wisdom fosters respect and love for nature, emphasizing our place in the broader ecological framework.

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