How much it costs to start a library depends on whether you are building your own library or buying a pre-built library or kit from our online store.
- If you’re building your own library, then your main cost is materials. That could range from $5 if you use recycled materials to $150 if you buy all new lumber and hardware. If you use recycled materials, make sure they’re high enough quality to be weatherproof. Cheap particle board or interior plywood won’t last outdoors. We recommend using exterior plywood, pine or cedar and painting it with standard exterior house paint for weather protection.
- There is a one-time payment of about $40 USD to register each library that you build. When you register, you get a charter sign printed with a unique charter number. Your charter number is the key that lets you set up your steward account and add your library’s location to the Little Free Library app and web map. You also get access to discounted books and a private Facebook support group.
- Think about installation costs, too, like a wooden post. Those items usually cost around $30 at your local home goods store or buy a pre-assembled post from our online store. Check out our recommended library installation instructions, too.
- If you purchase a library through our website, library prices start around $250 USD and your library is automatically registered. A charter sign is included with your library purchase, though it may ship separately.