Find the right shed for you with our jargon-busting help and advice
The garden shed should not be overlooked when it comes to planning your garden. Choose the right size and style, and it will blend into the look of your garden seamlessly. But more than that, it can help prevent your garden looking cluttered by hiding away all of your tools, toys and equipment - giving you extra room to enjoy.
We have a wide range of sheds to suit your needs, whatever they may be. Whether you’re replacing your old shed, searching for shelter when busy with the odd outdoor job (like planting pots or filling bird feeders), or looking for a quiet spot to sit and relax – we have something for you. We also stock suitable storage solutions to ensure that your space stays organised, as well as security ideas to protect your valuables.
Read our guide and let us help you find the ideal shed for you and your outdoor space.
Before you begin
How big should your shed be?
This has a lot to do with what you’ll be using it for – you’ll need a bigger shed for storing a large, ride-on lawnmower than you will if just keeping your bike or tools out of the way. List what you want to keep in your shed, and this will help determine the appropriate size to look for, as well as if you’ll need anything else, such as shelving.
Measure the space you’ve got available in your garden. Don’t forget to take into account the opening of windows and doors, as well roof overhangs, as these will also need extra space. If you can, opt for a slightly larger shed than you think you require – it’s always better to have too much space rather than too little and it'll be certain to fill up in no time.
If you’re going to be working on large projects, a shed may not be the right choice for you. A bigger option is a workshop, which will not only give you loads of storage, but also room to add work surfaces.
Where should you locate your shed?
There are many things to consider when selecting a suitable spot for your shed. If you have a large garden, all factors could be important, but if you're more limited for space, simply ensure that the area is as safe and secure as possible.
Is your garden prone to flooding? If so, make sure your shed is placed in the driest spot possible in order to protect its structural integrity – it also needs to be placed on a level surface.
Depending on what you’ll be storing in your shed, placing it in the shade will protect it from overheating in the summer. But do bear in mind that locating it underneath a tree will put it a risk from falling branches, and you’ll need to clear fallen leaves from it in autumn to prevent them rotting and marking the roof.
Are you going to be using it frequently? If so, you might want to situate it near to the house especially if you have a large garden. And also think about its purpose. Do you plan to run an electricity supply out there? Is natural light important? As this might influence not only the plot you choose but also the direction your shed will face.
Lastly, ensure easy access to as many sides of the shed as possible for maintenance.
Do you need planning permission?
While most of our garden buildings are less then 2.5 metres (m) high, which means that they won’t need planning permission to be installed, there are still a few rules to consider when shopping for a shed. They include:
- All outbuildings and garages should be single storey only and a maximum of three metres high with a pent roof and four metres high with an apex roof (for more on roof types see the 'Shed features' tab).
- Any building should be placed at least two metres away from the boundary of your property.
- The building must not cover more than 50% of the land around your home.
If you have any doubts, contact your local council for more information. And remember to discuss any building that you’re doing with your neighbours. While you may not need planning permission, it's a courteous way to flag any loud activity you may be doing, as well as give you the chance to discuss any implications for them.
Constructing your shed
Some of our sheds need to be self-assembled - follow the instruction manual provided. To install your shed safely, it’s recommended to have at least one person helping you, especially when it comes to metal sheds due to the weight of the components and the type of fittings involved.
Types of shed
There are three options when it comes to your shed's material - wood, metal and plastic.
The most traditional type of shed, as well as being the most popular in the UK, wooden sheds are durable and can be painted or stained to create the personal effect you’re looking for.
All of the timber we use is Forestry Stewardship Council (FSC) approved. This means that it has been responsibly sourced.
Although reasonably durable, the elements can take their toll on timber, so when buying your wooden shed look for timber that is:
Dip treated. This process involves applying preservative to the timber to protect it against rot and decay. You will need to re-apply throughout the life of your shed in order to maintain this protection.
Pressure treated. In order to ensure the maximum penetration, protective treatment that prolongs the life of the wood is blasted into the timber before it’s stacked and left to dry. This provides longer-lasting protection than dip treating the timber alone.
Wooden sheds come in three different styles – also known as constructions, cladding or designs – and all of our wooden sheds come with floors.
The traditional wooden shed style, the overlap (also know as featheredge) is not only classic in style, it’s usually the most cost effective choice. So called because its square-cut, rough slats overlap each other, this construction offers a more rustic look than other options.Shop overlap wooden sheds
Tongue and groove sheds
Made from smooth, planed boards that are interlocking, tongue and groove sheds offer great protection from the elements, ensuring that the contents of your shed remain dry whatever the weather.Shop tongue and groove wooden sheds
Another type of tongue and groove shed, our shiplap range is made from extra-strong cladding and includes an oust at the top to ensure that rain runs straight off the top without damaging the joints. As well as this, the panels are nailed into place, not only giving it a superior finish, but also increasing the weather resistance – even in extreme conditions.
For more features, check out the Shiplap+ range. They boast all the benefits of a shiplap shed as well as a unique double profile that has a more efficient water run-off. This is down to the patented way in which the smooth boards are designed, providing a good-looking appearance as well as weather resistance.Shop shiplap wooden sheds
A great industrial and utilitarian style that suits contemporary gardens, metal sheds are incredibly durable – the metal is galvanised meaning that it is protected from the weather, and you won’t have to re-paint.
Metal sheds are:
- Low maintenance
- Designed to last
- Available in a few different effects, including green paint and wooden effect
- Slightly more difficult to put up than wooden or plastic options – but are solid once completed
For an affordable and easy to install option, explore plastic sheds. These are light enough to move and manoeuvre around your garden (if you need to) and are perfect if you’re on a budget and don’t need lots of storage space. A plastic shed doesn't need painting or much maintenance and all of the models in our range come with a floor, so all you need will be in the box.
Plastic sheds are:
- Ideal if you don’t have a lot of equipment or items to store
- Able to emulate the look of metal or wood
- Easy to put up and look after
- Available in a range of colours and effects
Once you’ve decided on your preferred type of shed, it’s time to check out what other features are available to make sure it delivers exactly what you need.
There are three different options of roof that you can choose from - pent, apex and curved.
A flat roof with one side slightly lower than the other in order to drain rainwater off. Think about whether you want to have to duck down to enter, or when you get towards the back of the shed.
Pointed in the middle, so rainwater runs off the sides. This means that you’ll have the most headroom when stood in the middle of your shed, but you’ll need to bend down in order to get anything around the edge of the room. With a standard apex roof, the door sits under the peak of the apex so that water flows away from the entrance (pictured). Alternatively, opt for a reverse apex roof, where the door sits within the side wall. This style provides space for double door access.
Look out for Dutch apex roofs (also known as Dutch barn roofs), these offer greater height and more headroom – ideal if you’re tall or are storing tall items. It can be more difficult to assemble and felt the roof due to the extra height, so get a friend to help.
Another option that gives you increased headroom; the curved roof is one of the newest designs, giving your shed a contemporary look. The roof hangs over the sides of the shed slightly, providing your doors and/or windows with extra protection from the elements. This is something to consider if your shed is going to be very exposed, such as on an allotment.
Felt is the classic roof covering for wooden sheds and comes in two main varieties - sand and mineral felt.
Sand felt offers strong protection from water penetration. Alternatively opt for mineral felt - the more durable option, which also has a more attractive finish.
If you’re shopping for a wooden shed, there are two flooring options available:
- Orientated Strand Board (OSB) is an engineered wood flooring made from compressed layers of wood strands stuck together.
- Tongue and groove flooring (pictured) is the stronger option. Made from separate wooden boards that are designed to interlock, this is the option to choose if you're storing heavy items.
Consider your access options with two types of shed door - double and single doors.
- Double doors make life easier if you have large items to store, offering convenient access to your shed if you have a big lawnmower or maybe want to put bulkier children’s toys away.
- Single doors might be more suitable if you're storing smaller items. But do be sure to check how much space you need to open the door fully before you buy.
When deciding if you'd like a shed with windows, the most important factor is how you're planning to use your shed space.
If your shed is going to be used mainly for storage, no windows is the best option for security as any potential intruder will be unable to assess what you have in there.
Alternatively, if you’re going to be spending any time in your shed – while you do some gardening or DIY projects – windows will help let in more natural light than just having the door open. They also offer a nice view of your garden (depending on the position of your shed).
Windows are available in two varieties - opening and fixed. Opening windows provide more ventilation - ideal if you’re going to be growing any plants inside. While if that's not a consideration, a fixed one might suit you fine.
Our shed windows come in two different glazing types - styrene and polycarbonate. Styrene is the established, traditional option that's great for shoppers on a budget. Polycarbonate is a new innovation that doesn't discolour or yellow over time, and is virtually unbreakable making it the perfect choice for gardens where children play. The glazing is also fitted with security screws to provide another extra layer of protection.
You might need
Whatever type of shed you opt for, it will need a base before it can be put up. Some sheds come with a base included, but if this isn't the case you’ll need something sturdy, secure and level to sit between your new shed and the ground. We recommend that you don't erect your shed straight onto grass, soil or loose gravel as these will not protect your shed from becoming waterlogged in bad weather. It will weaken your structure if not on level ground, and any professional installation team hired to install your new shed will not do so if a suitable base isn't already laid.
There are four main shed base options:
Flat concrete shed base
If you’re looking for a permanent and tough option, choose concrete. You can lay concrete for whatever size shed you go for.Shop concrete
Patio or block paving shed base
Ideal if you have slabs spare from a paving project, this option is an inexpensive, and relatively straightforward way to build a shed base. We reoommend the Peak smooth paving range.
Is your existing patio or paving slab base uneven or set on a fall for drainage? Or do you simply want your shed to be a little higher than it is currently? Achieve the height and balance you want with height-adjustable legs that sit on your paving base to raise your shed slightly and create airflow for improved ventilation.
Wooden frame shed base
Using a wooden frame, which lifts your shed off the ground, this option comes with spikes that secure it with the least amount of effort. This means that, should you need to, you can move the shed at a later date.Shop wooden shed bases
Plastic shed base
A non-secured option, a plastic base can be laid anywhere (as long as the ground is level) making it the ideal choice if you’re living in rented accommodation – simply take it with you when you move house.Shop plastic shed bases
Tools, equipment and bikes are all expensive to replace so shed security is definitely something to be taken seriously. Every shed comes with a turn button or butterfly latch, but these on their own are pretty ineffective against thieves, so add a padlock or latch with a key for extra protection.
If your shed is near your home, the siren of a shed alarm will help alert you to an intruder’s presence. While a movement sensor security light attached to the outside of your shed will deter opportunists.Shop shed alarms
The British weather makes waterproofing your shed an absolute essential to ensure it looks good for as long as possible. Unfinished wooden sheds are the most in need of thorough and immediate treatment. Apply an exterior wood stain, oil or varnish to protect your shed from the elements, and why not choose a coloured paint to add a finishing touch to your garden?Shop exterior wood paint
To help keep everything neat and tidy in your brand new shed, shelving is an essential. Our Flexi-Store range of plastic storage solutions is available in eight different sizes, all of which can be easily stacked on compact shelving units. Waterproof seals ensure that your items remain protected from any moisture, and for the smaller, more fiddly items, dividers and trays inserted into the boxes will help to keep them organised.
Shop the Flexi-Store range