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Converting your garden shed


This is a guest post from In the backyard - custom backyard shed builders based in Ontario, Canada.

Do you have a shed in your garden that has not been getting the use you imagined it would when you first invested in it? Suppose it is just sitting empty or merely housing all of your old junk that you do not have room for in your garage. In that case, it could serve a better purpose as it may not seem like it now, but a shed truly has much potential. What you decide to do with your shed depends on your needs, as it can serve as a work-from-home office space, a hobby/project space, or even a decked-out “man cave.”

Of course, converting your shed from its current state to a more functional space will require some work. Still, when you can use the extended living area on your property, the work you put into the conversion will undoubtedly be worth it.

Planning and Preparation

One of the most critical steps of your shed conversion project will be the planning and preparation stage, as it is crucial to determine the specifics of what will be needed to make the rest of the process possible. Once you have an idea of what you intend to use the converted shed for, this can inform your planning process.

You can decide whether you are using the shed for an office, a project space, or something else will probably have a significant impact on the type of furniture you will require, and the types of changes you may need to make to the interior like added insulation or electrical outlets.

As part of your planning, you should also establish a budget for your project, factoring in all the materials you will require and any tools you may need to rent or purchase.

This preparation process should also involve a ton of measuring, as you want to know how much space you are working with before purchasing furniture or appliances that may or may not fit as intended. To ensure that all of your bases are covered, it is also a good idea to look into whether you require any permits for your shed conversion, as these requirements may vary depending on where you live and the scale of your project.

Assessing the Shed

Before you get too far into your shed conversion project, it is necessary to assess your shed in its current state to figure out what elements may already align with what you require and what parts need changing. For instance, your shed may already have a window or two that provides all the light you believe you will need.

In that case, it would remove a big step from your conversion process, as you would not have to go through the trouble of adding windows. However, if your shed has no windows or its windows do not provide sufficient light, you should consider where to add a window(s) and what kinds you would like to use.

Other factors are worth assessing, such as the current locking system on your shed, which may or may not require revamping, the amount and type of electrical outlets in your shed, the existing flooring, the insulation or lack thereof, and more.

After taking stock of the elements of your shed that are good as is and those that will require changing, you will undoubtedly have a much better idea of how much work, time, and money your conversion project will likely need.

Planning and Designing

The actual designing process for your garden studio will also involve multiple steps, as the design you come up with will significantly impact the final outcome of your converted shed. One of the essential steps in this process is figuring out the floor plan for your shed’s design, as this will make it easier to decide where to place furniture, lighting, and electronics.

You should also consider the style you would like to go for with your new office or studio space, with sleek and minimalist, cozy and ornamental, and modern and designer being just a few of the many options you have to select from.

You can also plan out the colour scheme you would like to go with and look at some different options for paint that you can use. Lighting can also make a considerable difference in hitting or missing the mark with the vibe you are going for, so consider what kinds of lamps and additional lighting you would like to include in your new space.

Finally, avoid putting too many items in the area while planning it. You want your shed to feel manageable after the conversion, which will happen if you try to stuff too much into a space that is too small to accommodate everything.

Preparing the Shed for Conversion

After you have a solid plan and design for your backyard shed, it is time to start getting everything ready for the conversion. First and foremost, if you still need to, remove everything from your shed and store it elsewhere, as anything you had previously stored in the shed will only get in the way during the conversion process.

After removing everything from your shed, it is advisable to thoroughly clean it before continuing with the renovations.

Finally, before you start working on the shed, it might help to get all of your building supplies, tools, and materials organized and arranged so that everything is easily accessible as you need it throughout the conversion. Set up everything you need in one central location away from the shed, and then bring things to the shed as you need them so that your working space does not become too cluttered.

Using GearHooks to save floor space

Unless you are either going to get rid of everything that was in the shed, or have space for it all elsewhere, you will still need somewhere to store garden tools, bikes, golf bags, skis and all the other stuff you have.

GearHooks can be effectively used in a shed to declutter and organize the space. By mounting GearHooks on the shed walls, you can efficiently store a variety of items, such as tools, gardening equipment, bikes, and sports gear whilst keeping the bulk of the floor space free for your project..

shed storage ideas

The hooks provide designated spots for each item, ensuring they are readily accessible and no longer scattered around the floor. This not only maximizes floor space for larger items but also prevents tripping hazards and helps maintain a safe and orderly environment.

shed storage ideas

GearHooks' customization options allow you to choose the specific hooks and configurations that best suit your storage needs, offering a tailored solution to tidy up and optimize the functionality of your shed.

Building the Studio

Installing an electrical system is the first thing you should take care of when you start the building/renovation process. Suppose you are not comfortable with performing electrical work on your own. In that case, you should consult or hire an electrician to help with this step. They will help you route an electrical cable from your home’s electrical panel to your shed, bury it, and install a dedicated GFCI circuit, conduit, outlets, and lights.

If you decide that you would like to have a sink or even a bathroom in your shed, then another critical step is the installation of plumbing. Once again, if this is not something you are comfortable doing on your own, you may seek help from a professional plumber who will help you dig holes for pipes, install them, and hook them up to your water main.

After you get these more significant tasks out of the way that requires more complicated installations, you can take care of some of the more straightforward tasks like painting. Once the renovations are complete, implement your interior design plan and set up your desired furniture and/or decorations.

Convert Your Shed Today!

There are limitless possibilities for what you can do with your garden shed if you decide to take on a conversion project. If you put in the right amount of planning, develop a good design, and follow the proper steps for renovating or hire professionals to assist with this, you can turn wasted space into a fully functional room. No matter what you decide to use your converted shed for, you can customize it to your liking. It will be much better than getting work done with little room in your busy house or finishing a project in your crowded garage.


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