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Shed Buying Guide

Zoning laws for your property are the most commonly neglected decision item in the shed buying process. It's not uncommon for towns to have set laws about how far the shed must be from the home, size of the shed, or materials used in the process (sustainable vs. other). Become familiar with the laws for your town before starting the build to avoid it becoming a pain point after the fact.

After checking your local zoning laws you'll want to make sure you build the structure in a safe place. You may want to lay down cinder blocks if you're looking for a cheap alternative to get the shed off the ground. If you're looking for a longer-term solution you can use concrete piers, slabs, or crushed stone. Generally this requires digging into the ground 1 ' 3' feet to provide an anchor for the concrete, stone or wood.

It's easy to jump right into the cheapest option available, but the savvy shopper should always consider longevity. Cedar and vinyl sided sheds generally cost more up front (usually two to three hundred dollars more), but are much more durable. If you spread that three hundred dollar hit out over a couple decades it's probably worth the upfront expense.

Choosing the right siding material is an integral step in purchasing an outdoor shed. As mentioned above, cedar is a popular choice due to its naturally rot resistant properties, but left untreated it can still succumb to inclement weather. Spend a little time researching some stains and protectants to be applied every other year, and it should extend the lifetime. Vinyl siding usually isn't as visually appealing as wood, but a strong case can be made for it if you have a home made of similar materials. The big benefit of using vinyl siding is that it's relatively maintenance free.

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