It’s easy to decide to put a new shed in your back garden. Everyone could do with a little more space, whether it’s for a wood working hobby, or just for extra storage. The next issue becomes where you’re going to put it.
It should be noted that a shed is considered just a shed when it doesn’t take up more than half of your back garden. For those with a tiny backdoor, you may be best to check with your local council to make sure you don’t need planning consent first. For the purposes of installing a wood shed, it’s considered permitted development (meaning you don’t need planning permission) when it meets the following criteria:
- The shed is at the back of your house and not your front garden
- Nobody is going to live in it
- It doesn’t take up more than half the garden space
- Isn’t higher than 4 meters with the eaves (where the top of the shed’s walls end and the roof starts) no higher than 3 metres.
…And, you aren’t building the shed in a conservation area. If that is the case, check with your local council before starting. It’d be a nightmare to have a shed built only to be told it needs to come down.
Once you know you can go ahead and put a shed in your back garden, the next thing is figuring out where.
Sheds should be positioned at least 2.5 metres away from your home to allow for plenty of space to walk around the shed, make any repairs to the wood panels and be able to coat it with a preventative sealant each year, unless the wood used is cedar or higher quality letting you get away with longer durations between coatings. Nevertheless, leaving 2.5 metres gives you plenty of space to access all parts of the shed and has sufficient for air flow.
Where to Install a Foundation for a Garden Shed
When considering where you’re going to put your shed foundations, think things through carefully before committing and go through some prep work to minimise hassles later on.
Things to consider for positioning your shed…
- The purpose of a new wood shed
For those building a wood shed for storage, the main aspects to consider are security and access. Light isn’t really too big a deal when you’re only using the shed to store things. If you plan to store valuables in your shed, it’s a good idea to have the shed within reach of a motion sensor security light.
For sheds being used as workshops, you’ll want a spot in your garden that captures the most sunlight. That is, unless you’re going to be working from the shed a fair bit, in which case, direct sunlight could make it stifling hot throughout the summer. Keep in mind that most sheds do not have opening windows or vents. The only vent you have in a wood shed is the door, plus the gaps between wood panels. Not enough to provide a decent breeze.
- What’s around your back garden?
Look around to see what’s in your back garden that could potentially damage your garen shed. If you have trees with overhanging branches, this could cause the sap and excess moisture to build up on the roof felt, (and could cause falling branches to damage the shed) meaning you’ll have more maintenance to do for the roof.
Whenever possible, keep debris clear of the shed, especially plants and trees that can cause a moisture problem, leading to damp becoming an issue. This is the same for back gardens with hedges. Not only will you need to have the shed built in a spot where you can easily work around the outside to make any repairs, but you’ll also need plenty of space to perhaps get ladders in to reach the top of the hedge, keeping it trimmed, to prevent overgrown hedges being in constant contact with the shed’s wall panels.
With regards to trees in your back garden, definitely leave plenty of space because as trees age, the roots can wind up growing under your shed, leaving it unstable.
Ground Levelling for Shed Bases
For back gardens with a slope, it’s best to level the ground first. Bases for sheds can be concrete, wood, or slabs. Something to keep in mind about your base material is you want something with good ventilation while preventing water from pooling under the shed. Some options include using a solid concrete slab, paving slabs or pressure treated timber bearers.
The most important aspect of a sheds base is ground levelling, because if you try to erect a shed on a slope, you can find bolts don’t line up correctly for a secure and stable build with minimal risk of the wood warping.