What Are the Disadvantages in Geodesic Domes?

A geodesic dome is made out of triangular or geometric shaped supports. These domes use less material and are as structurally as strong as traditionally built homes. This strength comes from the geometric shapes spreading the weight of the home out more evenly than other homes. Geodesic domes are easy to build and even come in do-it-yourself packages. As with any building, there are also disadvantages associated with this style of home.

...
The dome at Epcot is an example of a geodesic dome.

Unusable Space

The spherical design of a geodesic dome creates a lack of usable space within the home. As the the walls rise, it curves more sharply and lowers headroom around the outside walls of the home. The base of the home is circular in shape and rectangular shaped furniture, cabinetry and appliances do not sit flush against the outside wall creating wasted spaces within the home.

Doors and Windows

Finding doors and windows that fit into geodesic domes can be challenging. The traditional door and window are rectangles that will rest at 90 degree angles. A geodesic dome has a slope and is based on triangular or other geometric shapes to hold the structure together. Doors and windows must be specially made and can be expensive. Kits will provide prefabricated doors and windows for use in the home, however, replacements may be difficult to find.

Permits

Obtaining a building permit for a geodesic dome may be difficult to obtain in many areas. Neighborhoods with homeowners' associations may not allow for these types of structures to be built in a neighborhood even if a permit can be obtained. Building the home to code may also be a challenge as drainage and fire escapes that meet code are made more difficult by the design of the home.

Financing and Resale

Geodesic domes are not common homes in most areas. Obtaining a mortgage can be difficult because of the uniqueness of the home. Appraisals to establish value can be very difficult. Appraisers are required to find like properties that have sold within the last 12 months to support value. If geodesic domes are rare in your area, getting an acceptable appraisal can be difficult.