Your shed, your way

Accessibility: Finding tools and equipment in a shed can get difficult quickly so being orgainsed from the start helps. Photo: Shutterstock.

Accessibility: Finding tools and equipment in a shed can get difficult quickly so being orgainsed from the start helps. Photo: Shutterstock.

The simple backyard shed is no longer just a storage place for tools and lawnmowers. Sheds are now workshops, fitness gyms, cubby houses, home offices and of course the 'man cave'. While size can limit what you can do with your shed, the bigger the shed, the greater the possibilities for turning it into a functional and fun environment.

When building or revamping a shed you need to focus on what you use it for now and what it's use will be in the future as you don't want to be constantly throwing money at a shed. It's often easier and cheaper to pull down an old existing shed and replace it with a new one that you can build to your specifications, but remember to get council approval before you start.

Man Cave: A man's shed is his castle, so make sure you personalise your shed in your own distinct way. Photo: Geoff Ardle.

Man Cave: A man's shed is his castle, so make sure you personalise your shed in your own distinct way. Photo: Geoff Ardle.

Sheds range from small metal storage units to grand garages and sanctuaries. A simple garden shed to store equipment and tools in costs around $500, while custom built sheds can vary from $2,500 to $20,000 depending on the materials used along with the size and design of the building.

A shed needs to withstand the elements so use strong weather resistant materials on a solid concrete base. Plan your layout carefully so you aren't having to compromise later, this includes where access points will be and how large they are.

Make sure you organise power points throughout for tools and battery chargers, and if you're lucky enough a television and fridge. If you are turning your shed into an office or entertaining area you should also think about heating and cooling, given most sheds are made from metal where temperatures inside can vary greatly. You should also consider ventilation such as windows or a roofing fan, as fumes can quickly build up in small spaces.

Simple storage: With limited space even a small shed is ideal for gardening equipment and tools. Photo: Shutterstock.

Simple storage: With limited space even a small shed is ideal for gardening equipment and tools. Photo: Shutterstock.

Organisation and storage within your shed is key. While shelving is handy it can also be messy so try using trays and drawers with labels to ensure everything stays neat and easy to find. Make use of empty space such as walls with racks and hooks for hanging items, and in ceiling frames which are great for storing longer items such as rakes, shovels or even camping equipment and kayaks.