5 tips for building a small shed


If you want to build a small shed, here’s what you need to consider. 

Outpost hen houses

Words: Nadene Hall

You can never have too many sheds. But if your budget doesn’t spring to something that requires a council permit, it is possible to build a garden shed under 10m² without one.*

To qualify as a ‘garden shed’, it must be one storey, contain no facilities (eg, a toilet, water supply) and must be at least its own height away from any boundary.

*check for the maximum size and other conditions that may be in place in your area as these can vary from council to council.

1. PACE IT OUT

A shed under 10m² can have any floor dimensions you like. For example, you may choose to have a wide shed that’s not very deep, or one that’s deep enough to allow you to store a ride-on mower. But whatever you want, it pays to grab a measuring tape and some pegs and work out what size works best for your needs. Make sure it’s also easy to access.

2. SITE

A flat site is going to need the least amount of preparation, but you also want a clay base (so you can lay a concrete base, or at the very least a gravel base) and you want to make sure there is adequate drainage.

3. CHOOSE A KITSET GARDEN SHED CAREFULLY

There is a wonderful range of small kitset garden sheds in stores these days, mostly designed for urban gardens and very sheltered sites. These don’t tend to require a permit (the retailer will tell you if it does) and come with everything you need.

Kitset sheds don’t tend to require permits, but may not be strong enough for an open site.

However, if you’re planning to have your shed sitting anywhere that’s not an enclosed, sheltered place, particularly if you get strong winds, check the specs: the frames and trusses are often thin steel that don’t have the rigidity or strength to stand up to wind gusts, and if you’re near the sea, they may not have the right specification cladding to withstand salt.

4. GOOD FASTENINGS ARE CRUCIAL 

If you’re not experienced at building, you may think it’s a case of grabbing a hammer and nails, but tech screws and rivets are important fastenings, especially for cladding and roofing. Brackets to attach it to a floor or concrete foundation blocks also add strength, reinforcing the frame.

5. WATCH THE DOORS

There’s nothing more annoying than building your shed to fit your ride-on mower, then finding it won’t fit. Make sure you measure the width of your mower and allow extra room for hinges and the door’s frame.

Doors can be sliding doors (easier to install, but do require a wall to slide past) or hinged doors which can be closed and secured more easily. Always have doors on the longest side so you can easily access everything in your shed, whether it’s to the left or the right.

NZ Lifestyle Block This article first appeared in NZ Lifestyle Block Magazine.

You may also like...

6 easy-to-grow cherry tomato varieties To have tomatoes in time for summer, start planting soon. Cherry tomatoes are a good option for those with only a small amount of space.The fa...
19 tips for better fencing Photos: DreamstimeDoing some fencing now the ground is softer? Here’s 19 tips you might find useful.Words: Nadene HallWire mesh fences ar...
10 lawn problems and how to solve them A carpet of soft green grass does put the finishing touch to any landscape. Here, we look at 10 common problems standing in the way of the perfect...
What it takes to kill a rat Rats are incredibly smart, and it can be difficult to reduce their numbers if they’ve learnt to avoid bait and traps. But science has discovered t...
Discuss This Article

Send this to friend