Putting up a shed in your backyard is a fantastic idea! It instantly offers you more storage for your yard equipment, a place of solitude to escape to when the house becomes too hectic, an art studio, or anything else you can dream of. Don’t worry, and it’s not as difficult it seems; even if you’ve never done any kind of construction work or serious home renovations before, you absolutely can do this. So if you’ve ever wondered how to build your own shed, or at least want to know the steps before diving headfirst into the project, here is everything you need to know about building a shed.
First of all, know what you want to do with the shed. Do you want to use it to store your lawn equipment, or are you looking to turn it into an arts and crafts studio? Knowing what you want to use it for will help you with how large it should be as well as the basic design. A shed designed for a driving mower will need a large door opening (such as dual barn doors or a single, larger opening), while a studio setup won’t likely need this much space.
A general rule of thumb is to plan for a larger shed than what you think you’ll need. You can always use the extra space, but if you build a shed that’s too small, you’ll be stuck with it.
You’ll want to check out the local ordinances where you live. There may be some requirements for how close it can be to your property line. You can call your local town hall for this kind of information. Additionally, if you have a homeowners association, you will need to look over the HOA guidelines to see if sheds are restricted. The last thing you want is to have your shed up and ready for use, only to find a letter in your mailbox and a hefty fine attached to it (or even a document stating you need to remove the shed).
Once you have all the information you need regarding local and HOA regulations, you will want to dial 8-1-1 on your phone. This will bring out the utility companies where they will not only measure off the property lines but also the location of your utilities. You want to avoid building over utility lines because if the companies maintaining the services should ever need access, they may be forced to knock over your shed.
You have two options here: build from scratch, or select a pre-design. Building from scratch gives you infinite possibilities, but someone should only do it with experience in construction. There are plans out there that will provide you with step-by-step instructions on how to build sheds, but if you veer off-course, you don’t follow the instructions exactly, or the instructions are wrong to begin with, you’ll end up with an inferior shed that won’t last. That’s an expensive mistake to make. If you know what you’re doing, this is a great way to go. However, if you don’t, or if you don’t feel comfortable building your own shed, the pre-design options are great. This lets you pick and choose the design of the shed, the size and most features. It also takes much of the guesswork out of the build. It might cost a few dollars more, but in the end, it is a lot less stressful, and you will know the build is done right from the onset.
With all the pre-work done, you can get to work on the actual construction. The first step is to lay the foundation. There are a handful of options here. You don’t want just to place the shed on the ground. This will lead to the shed shifting and moving, especially during the change of weather.
One option is to dig into the ground, place four inches of gravel in the holes, and position masonry blocks on top of the gravel. Then set the four corners of your foundation (if you’ve ever installed a fence and had to set the wood support inside of cement then you will be familiar with this setup). Other options will have an entire cement foundation instead of a wood design. A wood floor and base are usually easier to deal with than cement. With cement, you need to make sure it dries perfectly. If you opt for a pre-designed shed, be sure to talk with the manufacturer and designer of the shed to get their input. Many locations will also help with laying the foundation. Doing so enables you to take this particular stress out of construction as well.
With the foundation in place, you can now begin with the actual installation of the shed. You will want to give the foundation time to dry and settle once you’ve done that you can move forward with placing the shed. When ordering the pre-designed sheds, such as those available through Barnyard Utility Buildings, the shed can be installed and placed by a team of professionals. This way, everything will be taken care of for you.
Here at Barnyard Utility Buildings, we are here to help you with all of your utility and shed needs. So whether you’re searching for the right shed design or want to know whether the space you have available in your yard will work, let us address all of your shed and utility building concerns. Feel free to check out our wide selection of sheds, browse through the readily available information and give us a call at your convenience. We’d love to hear about your project and offer all the help we can.