When the garage is packed with bikes, toys, gardening tools and the lawn mower, the chances of getting to a car without damaging it or yourself are slim. Thankfully, there's a way to solve this problem: Buy a shed.
You'll find that storing yard-care tools, equipment and supplies in a single location makes getting the work done much easier. You won't have to dig through the garage to find the trowel. The wheelbarrow and hand tools are right there beside each other every time you need them.
Here are some things to keep in mind when purchasing one:
Prefab is fab
Prefabricated sheds are one of the best values today. These are generally already finished and then delivered via forklift.
Made to order
Many types of sheds can be made to order. This allows you to better match existing structures in your landscape or yard. You can select the ideal size and then specify finish materials to match your home or garage. Sheds with a barn-style gambrel roof offer the benefit of a loft above for additional storage.
If you have a lawn tractor, a shed with double doors may be required so you can move the large mower in and out. Windows can make a shed more comfortable, with a screened opening allowing for better circulation of air but keeping out insects.
Do you need a permit?
Prefabricated sheds are usually not built on site. They leave the factory finished and ready to set up at in your yard. You may not have to worry about building permits, setbacks or foundations when it comes to prefabricated sheds. However, some communities with strict covenants, conditions and restrictions may prohibit them entirely, so be sure to check ahead of time.
Don't block the yard
There must be sufficient access to your backyard. Homes with narrow side yards and no rear yard access may not be able to accommodate a prefabricated unit. But sometimes just taking down a fence panel is enough to allow a forklift to bring one in.
Plot your spot
Before you buy a shed, study your yard to determine its best location. Since they generally aren't particularly decorative, sheds are sometimes set in out-of-the-way spaces, such as utility yards, or hidden behind dense planting. But if a shed will be easily visible from your house, consider its appearance. Specify a paint color that matches that of your house or other nearby structures. Seek a style with a roof line similar to that of your home's roof so the shed doesn't appear like an afterthought.
Pretty it up
You can also take an ordinary shed and decorate it. Creative faux paint can give it a rustic appeal. Shutters and a window box can render a dull window charming. Even the door itself can be embellished with fancy hardware and other details.
Flowers and foliage
Give that shed some garden flourishes by adding decorative foliage and flowers. They'll help keep the shed from looking as though it just got dropped into place.