Outdoor sheds come in a variety of different materials and configurations, and it’s important to understand the functionality and benefits of each to determine the shed that’s right for your backyard situation. Consider the following elements as you start your research:
Size: Not only should you take the length and width of the shed into consideration, but you should also note the structure’s finished height. Make sure that you have enough room to comfortably move around inside and that it's tall enough to hold any tools you may want to store. If you’re not too worried about being able to stand up and walk around in the shed, this may be less of a concern — but it still needs to fit what you’re planning to store. You'll also want to keep the size of your yard and the shed’s footprint in mind. If your yard is on the smaller side, mark out the perimeter of the shed you like to determine how much space it takes up. This helps you better visualize and plan for the structure.
Intended Purpose: From workshops to pet houses to hobby spaces, sheds can serve a variety of purposes beyond storage alone. Making sure you're clear on how you intend to use your new shed goes a long way in helping you make the right choice. For example, if you’re planning to spend time in the shed working on craft projects, windows that let in natural light might be a must-have feature so you can see what you’re doing.
Materials:Consider the long-term viability of the materials used in the shed you select. Although outdoor storage sheds are designed to, well, stay outdoors, different materials can still perform better in different climates. Wood, for example, is likely to last longer in sunnier, drier climates than wet ones. A metal shed, on the other hand, can get hot quickly, so it may not be ideal if you plan to work inside it and live in a warmer climate. Resin and wood sheds also stand up better to impacts — they’re less likely to dent — so they tend to last longer in windy areas.
Planning Ahead: Before you invest in a new shed, consider both what you need right now and what you might want in the future. While a certain shed may be the perfect fit at the moment, is there a possibility that your needs will outgrow it in the coming years? Take into account things like sporting equipment, bikes and lawn tools you intend to purchase later when making your choice — if you’re thinking of getting a riding mower down the road, a shed that only fits your current push mower might not be the best option.