It's been said that life is a learning process, but as any homeowner can tell you, it's also a process of accumulation. Over the years, we accumulate a lot of things, many of them things with great sentimental value. From your grandmother's wedding dress to the T-shirt from your first concert, our things represent precious memories, and even if we don't use them, we often can't bear to lose them.
With real estate prices skyrocketing, moving into a bigger home in which to keep our things is no longer an option for many people. In a time in which garages are being transformed into studio apartments for aging parents, storage sheds are becoming a popular alternative. In fact, garden sheds have become so popular that there's even a yearly competition in the UK, with prizes for those that are most historic, artistically unique, and ecologically sustainable. While most people don't enter their sheds in competitions, they do want them to be as attractive as they are practical.
One of the first things to consider when choosing a shed is the size. Small sheds are typically under 7 square metres. They are ideal for storing and organising basic gardening supplies like tools, pots and fertiliser. A medium-sized shed is between 8 and 11 square metres and is large enough to hold gardening equipment as large as a riding mower. Large sheds are between 13 and 26 square metres, and can serve not only as a garden shed, but as a workshop, hobby space, or playhouse for the children.
Preserving natural resources and protecting the environment has become so important that government agencies now offer advice on choosing the best building materials to do that. Building materials are an important thing to consider when choosing a shed. Wood, vinyl and metal are all options, and each has its own advantages.
Wood is a popular choice for outbuildings because the shed can be built to match the style of the house. However, because wood rots over time when exposed to the elements, it's important to choose a weather-resistant type of wood. Cedar has natural resins that make it more resistant to rot than many other types of woods. Whatever type of wood you choose, it's important to coat it with a sealer to protect it from moisture as well as damaging UV rays. The sealer should be re-applied at least every other year. Ecologically speaking, while wood is biodegradable and recyclable, trees are an important natural resource. Keeping your wooden shed from biodegrading before its time requires regular maintenance.
Vinyl is a popular choice because it's less susceptible to weather damage and requires less maintenance. It also comes in a wide variety of colours, making it easy to match to the colour of your home. It's also constructed with panels constructed according to precise specifications to prevent leaks. Vinyl isn't biodegradable, so it's long-lasting. In fact, it lasts forever, yet unfortunately, it's not recyclable. It's durability, weather-resistance, easy maintenance and affordability have made vinyl a popular choice.
Metal sheds are usually constructed of galvanised steel, aluminium, or a combination of the two. Like wood, steel requires a protective coating to prevent direct contact with moisture that can lead to rusting. Steel building materials are coated with a finish to protect them from scratches and rust. Metal is durable and long-lasting, as well as fire and insect resistant. Rust-free aluminium, which is also recyclable, is a popular choice of metals for garden sheds. Like vinyl, it comes in a variety of styles and colours.
Necessity is the mother of invention, and the necessity for more space has sparked the imaginations of thousands to find ever more creative uses for their storage sheds. Whether it's a private backyard office, a greenhouse, or an artist's studio, storage sheds are a great way to add space, and financial value, to your home. Best of all, they allow you to keep all those things that have emotional value, because those are the things that money just can't buy.
These tips were brought to you by Sheds n Homes, who have been delivering garden sheds and other premium steel building solutions since 2011.