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How to choose a garden shed

There’s lots to consider when choosing a garden shed – from how you want it to look, to how big it needs to be and where you’ll put it. We’ve put together this guide to help make it easier to pick the right shed for you…

What’s the main purpose of your shed?

The first thing to consider is what you will be using the shed for – this could be for gardening, DIY and hobbies, storage or even a home office.

Check that the sheds you are looking at have enough space and access for your intended purpose. For example:

  • If you are planning to use your shed for working on DIY projects or hobbies, make sure you have enough height to work comfortably as well as store your tools and kit.
  • For sheds that are going to be used for storage, work out if there’s enough room to fit everything in, and also that the items you plan to store will fit through the doorway. If you want to store bulky items like lawn mowers and wheelbarrows, you may want to add double doors to your shed.
  • Is there a specialist shed available that meets your needs? For example, we have a potting shed for dedicated gardeners. If you have a very specific purpose in mind, getting a shed custom made could be the best option for you.

Where will it go?

As well as thinking about how much space you need inside your shed, don’t forget to check you have enough space in your garden for your chosen shed. Measure your space carefully, allowing for an overhanging roof if your shed has one.

Here’s some things to consider when choosing a site for your shed:

  • Do you want to see the shed from the house or would you prefer for it to be hidden?
  • Will you be accessing the shed frequently, and if so do you need to improve access, e.g. lay ground covering or a path?
  • Will you need electricity and light, and can cables easily be laid from the house?
  • Will you be using the shed as a summer house? In this case, ensuring the windows and doors face south will allow the most light into your shed.
  • Will you be working in the shed? If so, you may want to position it in the shade, as it can get very hot inside sheds in the summer. However, make sure you avoid overhanging branches which could cause damage to your roof.
  • Ensure there’s good drainage in the area you will place your shed, flooding can cause significant damage.
  • Double check if you will need planning permission – although most sheds do not require permission if they take up less than 50% of the garden area.

Construction and materials

Choosing a high quality shed with solid construction will ensure you get years of service from your shed.

Sheds made from featheredge boards are likely to be cheaper but less long lasting, as the boards are more likely to sag and warp. Although they can be slightly more expensive, sheds made from interlocked shiplap cladding are much more durable and resilient.

Choose quality timber that has been treated with preservatives for optimum longevity.

Style of shed

Sheds come in many shapes and sizes, but the two most common designs are apex and pent sheds.

Apex sheds

The traditional shed shape. Apex sheds have a triangular sloped roof, ideal if you need to store tall items.

Pent sheds

Pent sheds have a single sloped roof, with front eaves higher than the back. These are ideal for working in as they have generous headroom at the front.

Special sheds

It’s also possible to get purpose-made specialist sheds such as potting sheds, tool storage shedschildren’s play dens and summer houses.

Buying a shed from Somerlap

If you need any more help with selecting a shed, get in touch and we will be more than happy to help. If you can’t find the right shed, we can design something to meet your needs, just ask.

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