I decided to start this post after reading this post: No offense meant but I would have to gently disagree with this. The only cost that a person has a reasonably large chance of HAVING to shell out significantly for is safe run fencing, but you can make a pretty good daytime-only run for half a dozen (or a dozen more crowded) chickens with maybe $100 worth of fencing and posts. So the cost needn't be exorbitant for the run. Obviously a larger or roofed run will cost a good bit more; but OTOH it is sometimes possible to scrounge much or all of the materials for cheap or free, if you look around enough. As for the coop itself, is of course quite EASY to spend a lot but it is by no means NECESSARY. Not even if you don't have lots of stuff lying around. Scrounging is good, as is designing around the materials you have. So it can certainly be done on a shoestring if desired. Also many people have structures that can be converted (in whole or in part) into chicken housing, so that you're back to only needing a run. I am only posting this so that people do not get scared off by thinking that they HAVE to have many hundreds or thousands of loose-change dollars in order to have chcikens smile Good luck, have fun, Pat While I agree with Pat for the most part, I would like to point out that there is also time involved. So I would like to discuss the total cost we all spend getting started with chickens. I will start: Time spent doing coop/chicken research: ~ 50 hours. (This is a conservative guess. I obsessed for 3 weeks before starting the build. I also had to design from scratch so my tractor could go through a garden fence.) Materials for coop and run: ~ $350.00 (The run was put in as a dog run by previous house owners. All I had to do was fix the gate. Spent extra on a few ideas that did not work out so well. I believe if I were to do it again I could make the coop for less than $200.00) Time Spent building the coop and run: ~40 hours (This includes time building feeders and nipple watering system. A proper paint job was a big time eater. It always amazes me how long it takes to build even simple things.) Initial Cost of Chickens: Including brooding supplies and feed to first egg. $0 (I am lucky enough to have a friend with a large flock. She let me have my 4 18 month old hens for free. We had 4 eggs the next day) Other Misc Costs: I'm sure I will think of some. This is just the initial cost. About $350 and roughly 90 hours of my time, worth $1800.00 if I were work extra instead of building a coop. Just so happens I enjoy building things as a hobby so we could reasonably cut the cost for time in half. Total true cost for me to first egg: ~ $1250.00 I was originally going to build a recycled coop from pallets. For me though it did not make sense to spend that much time tracking down and destructing pallets since that is less fun for me than working. Kinda scary when you think about it like that. However I have 4 great pets and some great eggs. So I would do it again in a heartbeat.