Five Planning Tips for Your New Garage or Storage Building

by Brian Schmidt
(last updated July 17, 2020)

Then there're all of the yard and garden tools. Perhaps you have a variety of mechanics tools or handyman tools. In some cases we have a "baby" that needs a home so that we can keep her clean and protected from the elements – whether it's a vintage car or a fast and furious beauty.

But before you go shopping for a new building do some planning and homework. It will save you time and frustration down the road. It may even save you considerable money.

  • Understand the Exact Building Uses. First and foremost understand exactly what your new building will be used for. Now this might seem like a silly statement on the surface but let's dig a little deeper into what I am saying. You will have a specific reason for needing a garage or storage building. Whether it's a hobby shop, garden storage building, garage or any other main use you will probably find that there will be ancillary uses as well. What I mean by that is that your garage may double as a place to store garden tools and equipment. In your workshop you may want to store some hobby equipment or overflow from your inside storage area. The extra uses for your building can dictate the shape of your building as well. Some uses require large open spaces while others are best suited by a longer and narrower building.
  • Don't Forget Building Height. Also consider what clear height you will require inside your new building to suit the intended use. A building that is a couple of feet taller than required is still quite usable. However a building that is a few inches to low may not work at all for your use. Remember we're talking INSIDE CLEAR height. Many buildings are sold by eave height which is the outside height to the top of the eave.
  • To Heat or Not To Heat. This brings up another point. Will you be heating and cooling your new building? If so you will want to ensure that you source the proper insulation for your building. If you wait until later you may find that installing the insulation will be more expensive and much harder to do.
  • How much Loading. If you plan to use a chain hoist or other lifting device attached to the roof framing you should prepare for it from the start. Many buildings – and especially metal buildings – are engineered to specific loads. Adding any loads to the framing structure can compromise the safety of the building and especially you.
  • Placement. Finally consider where your building will be placed. This alone may dictate the size and shape of your new garage or shop. It may also affect the exterior finishes. You may want to blend-in with the surrounding buildings or you may choose to have your garage make a statement.

There are of course many other planning considerations such as building permit regulations, local by-laws and the biggie, cost. However if you start armed with the information above it will make the planning process a much more enjoyable experience.

Author Bio

Brian Schmidt

Brian A. Schmidt is the publisher of He has decades of experience in the construction industry. Check out more information regarding metal prefab garage kits, shops and storage buildings. ...


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