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How To Choose the Perfect Outdoor Shed

November 16, 2023   |   9 min read
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Green gable garage in backyard

How to Choose the Best Option for You

When you are looking to purchase an outdoor storage shed, there are some initial things you should consider: aesthetic value and property value.

Aesthetic Value

As a homeowner, you want your outdoor storage shed to provide aesthetic value. It should be appealing to the eye and be complementary to your home.

Property Value

Adding value to your property by purchasing a beautiful outdoor storage shed with architectural detail should be another consideration.

Too often a shed of lesser quality becomes an eyesore and something you want to hide behind your house. Avoid making this mistake when choosing your outdoor storage shed by creating a list of styles and materials you’d like your shed to have.

How to Determine the Right Size Storage Shed

Size is the next topic up for discussion.

Based on a variety of factors, you will want to consider what your storage shed capacity needs are.

Our 3D designer has a storage visualization feature that helps you lay out a floor plan of items you would typically have in your outdoor storage shed.

Smaller Shed Options

You may have a smaller yard that only requires a push mower. Maybe in addition to that, you have some types of hand tools (shovels, rakes, brooms, etc.).

In this case, a smaller storage shed would be ideal for you.

We offer small outdoor storage sheds starting at 8’ x 12’, and sizes go up from there.

Larger Shed Options

Perhaps you have a larger piece of property to care for. This alone can be the reason you need a spacious storage shed. If you have a riding mower and a snow blower, these two items require extra room to get in and out with ease.

Our outdoor storage sheds can be built as wide as fourteen feet—and some models can be built up to forty feet long.

We also offer sheds with lofts for extra outdoor storage capacity.

Custom Shed Sizes

Of course, everyone’s outdoor storage needs are different.

That’s why we offer small, medium, and large size options in all our outdoor storage shed models to suit each person’s individual needs.

Our 12’ x 16’ Shed

A 12’ x 16’ outdoor storage shed is one of our most popular sizes.

This model won’t take up too much outdoor space if your yard is a typical city or subdivision lot.

At the same time, our 12’ x 16’ shed provides solutions for most homeowners and can accommodate all their outdoor storage needs.

Our 14’ x 24’ Shed

If you own a larger piece of property, you may not fit into the first category.

For that reason, our 14’ x 24’ storage sheds and garages are also very popular choices—due to the increased storage capacity.

In the event you have heavy equipment (like a tractor) or want to store a car or motorcycle, we have the perfect size outdoor storage shed or garage for you.

Finalizing Your Shed Size

Before choosing your final size, it is always a good idea to check with your local zoning office and homeowners’ association (if applicable). This is your responsibility as the homeowner and ensures that the building size you have chosen will be permitted in your neighborhood.

Once you have determined the allowed size of your outdoor storage shed—and have calculated your storage needs—it’s time to start choosing the beautiful accessories we offer. We offer endless color combinations you can put together to create the perfect outdoor storage shed of your dreams.

White utility shed in backyard

The Best Sheds for Extreme Weather Conditions

When choosing your outdoor storage shed, evaluating the type of weather your shed will be exposed to is vital.

Here are some important factors to consider:

  • Where will it be placed?
  • Will your outdoor storage shed be in a location that will be getting direct sunlight throughout the day?
  • Do you live in an area that may experience heavy snowfall at times?
  • Will it be facing direct strong winds?

To prevent weathering, we use only high-quality materials in all facets of our outdoor storage sheds.

Flooring

All our storage sheds are built with ¾ inch plywood tongue and groove floors.

Our Double Super Tuff outdoor storage floor options are built with two layers of ¾ inch tongue and groove plywood. This provides an unbeatable sturdy floor that can handle any of your vehicles or heavy equipment with ease.

We also offer heavy-duty ramp options that make moving your equipment in and out of your storage shed a breeze.

Construction

Our sheds have plywood construction that holds up to extreme temperatures and higher levels of moisture—compared to oriented strand board (OSB), which is commonly used in building outdoor storage sheds.

Roofing

All our roofing material is metal that carries a 40-year warranty. This type of roofing sustains higher wind and extreme weather conditions better than asphalt shingles (also typically used in building outdoor storage sheds).

Extra Options

We offer spray foam on floors, ceilings, and walls for added R-value (higher insulation value). Plus, vinyl-insulated windows and fiberglass door options add to your shed’s performance and longevity.

With comprehensive options, some of our customers use their outdoor storage sheds for more than just storage. Home offices have become a popular addition, and pool houses provide extra space for additional accessories needed in pool care.

What Materials are Best to Consider When Purchasing an Outdoor Storage Shed

While styles are important, structural components are the first thing to consider when looking at the materials used to build your outdoor storage shed.

What type and size of dimensional lumber is used? What type of wall sheathing, siding, and flooring is used?

Let’s look at the structural difference between oriented strand board (OSB) and plywood.

Plywood

Plywood holds fasteners more firmly in place than OSB, whether you’re using nails, screws, or staples. When exposed to excessive moisture, plywood tends to swell less and dry out much faster than OSB.

OSB

OSB is generally cheaper than plywood and not as stiff. When exposed to excessive moisture, OSB will expand up to 15 percent on cut edges and may never shrink back down when dry.

Using OSB can result in soft and squeaky floors.

Framing

The size and quality of the framing lumber also play a big role in how strong the overall structure is and how long your storage shed will last.

We use European spruce 2’ x 4’ boards for all wall construction. These boards are an extremely clear grade, meaning little to no knots.

Floor Joists

Our sheds start with notched 4’ x 6’ pressure-treated ground contact runners. Boards that are 2’ x 6’ sit 1 ½ inches into the 4’ x 6’ boards to create the floor joists. This type of notched joint is one of the strongest applications available.

Siding

We use premium wood siding called DuraTemp®. This product offers a 50-year warranty, and its surface is 100% clear—free of patches and repairs.

DuraTemp® is manufactured with a strong plywood inner core and a fully water-resistant resin. The surface is a tough hardboard face that won’t crack, split, or check.

Pro lofted garden shed

Additional Features, Designs, and Options

In recent years, we’ve seen an increase in demand for uses aside from traditional outdoor storage sheds.

Customers are converting sheds into home offices, entertainment areas, and even home-based business applications.

Because of this rise in demand, we’ve elevated our architectural designs—adding diverse options to help you find the perfect customized look for your outdoor storage shed.

Custom Designs

For functionality and long-term stay, we offer insulative options such as spray foam, vinyl double-pane windows, and fiberglass doors. These options can help keep the heat in or out, depending on the time of year.

When it comes to the architecture and overall beauty of design, we have countless options. We offer shutters, flower boxes, corbels, and pergola-style awnings—just to name a few features.

Endless Options

Some models are available with timber framing options, constructed from kiln-dried stained 6’ x 6’ boards. Cedar decking or composite deck boards can complete the porch floor of these build-outs and add a striking appearance.

With a wide array of paint and stain colors, metal roofing colors, and a choice of white, brown, and black window frames and doors, the combinations are endless.

Your outdoor storage shed doesn’t have to look like your parents’ old outdoor storage shed. By adding colors and textures, you can create a timeless look that will enhance your home and add value.

Other Factors to Consider

In choosing your outdoor storage shed, here are a few other things to take into consideration.

Location

Location in your yard is a very important thing to consider. Obviously, you want your shed to be close enough for accessibility. However, make sure to place your shed in a relatively flat spot to ensure it stays level. This keeps all the mechanicals (windows/doors) functioning properly year after year.

Although we would always recommend you include a site prep (gravel pad) in your purchase of an outdoor storage shed, a good level spot is the best place to start.

Design

The size of your outdoor storage items will also need to be taken into account. When choosing door options, think about the space needed to get your items in and out. If you have a riding mower with a fifty-inch deck, a double-door option would be an obvious choice.

When you design your outdoor storage shed size factors need careful consideration. They will reduce the overall maintenance needed and increase the longevity of your storage shed.

Setup

A storage shed placed under a large pine tree may look great at first. But over the years, the sap and needles will damage the roof and stain the paint, causing you extra care and maintenance.

A low-lying area may reduce longevity due to ice and snow melting, creating excess standing water around the foundation of your storage shed. This can also cause your storage shed to settle and become unlevel. The doors and windows may become inoperable and releveling would be needed.

Take time to make the best choices for setup and save yourself the headache down the road.

Tan utility shed in backyard

How We Help You Choose the Best Storage Shed

At Sunrise Structures, we are committed to helping you make the best choices by providing you with the insight and experience we have in the outdoor storage shed industry.

We want you to make the best-educated decision in purchasing your storage shed.

Our goal is to help you solve all your outdoor storage needs, provide you with the highest level of customer service, and build your storage shed to the best quality and industry standards possible. That’s why we stand behind our storage sheds with our 10-year warranty.

From design to installation, our goal is to exceed your expectations. We ensure your satisfaction with the purchase of your outdoor storage shed now—and for the years to come.

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Find your Perfect Outdoor Shed at Sunrise Structures

Transform your outdoor space with the perfect storage solution! Discover the ideal shed size, top-quality materials, and endless design options at Sunrise Structures. Make the best choice for your home – start exploring now!
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