Build Your Own Garden Shed – The Planning Stage

Fail to plan and you plan to fail

The old saying is true about any kind of project – and when you are trying to build your own shed then its is particularly appropriate. Many people seem to think that building a wooden storage shed or lean to is a small construction problem and, as such, doesn’t need to be planned out. However, as we shall see this is definitely not the case.

storage-shed-plansImagine you have a small garden and you want to build a shed. Sure, you could just sketch out a few details, head off to the DIY store and buy some stuff and then start hammering pieces of wood together. However, have you stopped to think about the final shape of the shed? Will it be subject to any height restrictions such as overhanging trees? How about planning permission if it’s a bigger structure – the last thing you want is to have to tear it down because it violates local planning laws. Have you put the door at the right end – don’t laugh, I know of projects where the shed was actually built with the door only a foot from the garden wall! Have you allowed for windows, drainage, and even power? What often starts off as a simple enough sounding project can, very quickly, go wrong with sometimes expensive and disastrous consequences.

The good news is that by investing a little time at the planning stage, many of these problems can be avoided saving you time, effort and even a lot of money. A good set of wooden shed plans will lay out, in great detail, the materials you will need so you know exactly what you will need to invest in raw materials as well as tools. This means no nasty surprises during the construction phase, and generally, a more pleasant experience all round.

Good shed plans will also provide you with a whole range of fantastic design ideas. Why limit yourself to a square box when you can opt for a cabin, or why have a lean to when a complete storage shed complete with light, power and workbench are all within your capabilities. In short, good shed plans are worth far more than the small amount of money they cost to obtain.

If it’s a bigger project, you might decide to have an architect draw up plans, but beware, this can be a very expensive process and, generally, isn’t needed for the average wooden storage shed project. A much better bet is to download some of the free shed plans that you can find online, or if you fancy really making a good job of it, invest about $40 in a package such as myshedplans which provides you with 12,000 different designs.

Whatever you chose to do, though, please make sure that you have a good set of plans to work from. Make sure that you can envision the whole process end to end and only start to lay foundations and build your structure when you are happy that you know exactly what you are doing.