A shed is a significant part of any garden. They serve as storage spaces for the most part but are now used for many other different reasons, too. You can convert them into offices, garden bars and so much more. Choose from different materials, glazing options and other features to make it your own.

Buying a shed shouldn’t have to be a difficult decision. Find out more about buying a shed via this guide.

Table of contents

What size shed do I need?

Well, before you answer that, consider these two questions:

  • What will you use the shed for? and;
  • What will you store in it?

The size of your shed will depend on these factors.

We’ve broken down key questions to help guide your reasoning for choosing a specific shed size.

How much space do you have?

Trying to fit a large shed into a small garden just doesn’t work. Think about the roof overhangs and window openings as these add up to the overall size of the shed.

If your garden has elbow room, lean towards a slightly roomier shed. A little more space is a lifesaver and beats the struggle of cramming everything into a miniature shed. Remember, it’s all about making the most of your garden real estate!

What will you use your shed for?

Sheds aren’t just tool storage spaces anymore. They are now spaces where work or personal activities can take place. Here are some of the ways sheds can be used:


Now, we know we said sheds have various modern uses, but this doesn’t stop you from using them for their traditional purpose, too! For homeowners and business owners alike, you can store your garden maintenance tools, bikes and more. It’s easy to access and helps shelter items away.

Forest Garden Overlap Pressure Treated Apex Shed with Double Door


Ah, the great outdoors. A place where people can find peace and comfort and enjoy nature. A shed is perfect for this as you can turn it into a summerhouse. This gives you a calm space to relax and take in the scenery of your garden.


You don’t have to stick to glass if you’re into the plant game. A shed can work as a greenhouse, creating the perfect haven for flowers and green plants. Plus, it’s not just a plant paradise. You can also keep garden tools tucked away properly. It’s like having your own multitasking garden superhero. A storage space and a plant paradise all in one!

Forest Garden Shiplap Potting Shed


If you work from home or need a breaktime space to escape the home feeling during work hours, a shed can be the space for that peaceful setting. Whether it’s to take some time away from the little ones or an area to work without distraction, a shed can work perfectly.

A bonus benefit of this is that you can enjoy the view of your garden when you need downtime, too.


Whether you’re a DIY enthusiast or have a hobby that demands a top-notch workspace, a shed is your go-to solution. It serves up that essential space you crave and lets you stash all the tools and gear neatly, sparing your home from turning into a chaotic mess.

Consider it like having your dedicated hub for all things hands-on, minus the living room clutter.


What is your budget?

The upfront cost of a shed depends on its size and usually involves a bit of DIY installation on your part. However, remember small factors can differ from shed to shed, so observe these in more detail before making a purchase.

Now, if you’re not a DIY enthusiast, certain suppliers can lend a hand with the installation. However, beware that some builders might throw in an extra installation cost, so double-check those details before committing to anything.

Do you want single or double doors?

If you’re eager for a smaller shed, single shed doors are the way to go. Perfect for stashing your usual garden tools or smaller bits and bobs.

If you want a lot of entry space for equipment or just for garden view purposes, double doors are a great choice. They’re ideal for workshops or storing the bigger tools and chunkier items in your collection.

Now, before you make a door decision, think about how you’ll use the shed and how easy it is to enter. If you have a shed with double doors that won’t swing open because of the close proximity, this can prove annoying.

Which shed material should I choose?

If your immediate answer is wood, you’re likely thinking about traditional sheds. However, modern sheds can now come in plastic and metal.

We’ve listed shed building materials to help you find out more about the pros and cons of each. Learn about their longevity, benefits and more to help you choose which is right for you.

Wooden shed•Popular and cost-effective.
•Long-lasting and built for durability.
•Easily customisable for painting and decorating (inside and out).
•Can rot over time.
•Wood at risk to pests.
•Wood appearance can be flawed.
•Can suffer from the weather, so will require maintenance.
Plastic shed•Cost-effective.
•Low maintenance.
•Lighter than wood and metal.
•Great if you need little storage space.
•No additional painting is required.
•Can have a skylight added for extra sunlight.
•Can be combined with metal for extra strength.
•Low security
•Can be restrictive in size.
•Resistant to stains and rot.
•Customisation can be pricey or cannot be customised in some cases.
Metal shed•High durability.
•Can have sliding doors for easier transfer of tools in and out of the shed.
•High security, so great for containing expensive tools and more.
•Can be costly.
•Can rust over time and corrode over time.
•Heavy material that can be difficult to set up and move around.

What type of shed roof should I choose?

For shed roofs, there are three main types to choose from. Luckily for you, the typical pointy style is not your only choice. Here’s some information to help you understand the unique roofs available to you and why the choice of roofing matters for your shed.

The apex roof – a classic

Apex roofs are your typical pointed roof style. They have a point in the middle which allows rainwater to run off. The design also gives you optimal headroom when standing in the middle of the shed.

When fitting a door, it’s common to install it under the apex peak of the roof as this lets water flow away from the entryway. The style will also enable you to install double doors if you have a wide enough shed.

Forest Garden Tongue & Groove Pressure Treated Reverse Apex Shed with Double Door & Log Store

Another apex-style roof is called a Dutch apex roof (or barn roof). This style slightly varies with two-section slopes that offer more height and headroom around the edges of the shed. This is ideal for taller items and people! However, their height makes putting them together and adding felt quite the challenge. So, support from an additional person will help.

Shire Barn Shiplap Apex Shed - 7ft x 7ft

The pent roof – time to get contemporary!

A pent roof is essentially a flat roof at an angle with one side lower than the other to allow rainwater runoff. This roof type lets you choose whether the height is there as you enter the door or when reaching the back of the shed.

The curved pent roof is a modern take on the classic design. It hangs slightly more over the sides of the shed, protecting the walls, windows and/or doors. This is an important feature when your shed is more exposed in places like allotments or areas with no shelter (from trees etc).

Forest Garden Overlap Pressure Treated Pent Shed with No Windows

A flat roof – easy to work with

Flat shed roofs are for you if you adore level roofing spaces. They usually have a pitch ranging from zero to ten, which makes it easier to add felt to, thanks to level spacing.

Be warned, though. A flat roof is more likely to become damaged and leak over time. So, maintenance will be regular; especially when the roof slant is further from the ten-degree pitch.

Shed floors and shed base

Don’t fret about feeling silly asking if the shed comes with a floor. It’s a perfectly valid question with good reason to ask it!

Shed floors and shed bases are different things. A shed base sits between the ground and floor to create an even surface. The base is the solid foundation for the shed to sit on.

EcoBase Fastfit Shed Base Grid

You may be happy to know some sheds are ready with a pre-floor. However, you’ll likely need to buy the base separately. Check closely if the shed floor is included or if you need to make a separate purchase, as this will be a factor for your budget.

EcoBase Fastfit Shed Base Grid 2

Here’s what to consider for shed floors and shed bases.

Check if your chosen shed comes with a floor

Shed floors are not necessary as long as you have a base capable for the shed to sit on. If you choose to check whether your shed has a floor already, you can do so.

Most wooden sheds will need a floor added using OSB (oriented strand board) or tongue and groove flooring. OSB is a very common type of shed floor because it is an engineered type of wood flooring. This means it is manufactured of compressed layers of wood strands stuck together to make the flooring.

Tongue and groove or timber floors are known to be more durable. They are also more sag-resistant and are considerably stronger than the OSB board.

OSB, tongue and groove or timber all vary in thickness as well. So, check the thickness and material are suitable for the shed.

What about plastic shed floors and metal shed floors?

The same approach applies to plastic sheds and metal sheds. However, many do have available floor support kits. These frames let you add a wooden floor in place using your own timber.

Some sheds also provide a metal or plastic floor. You will need to make sure that there are anti-slip features to reduce the risk of injury when the floor is in use.

Do you want your shed base to act as the shed floor?

A shed is nothing without a sturdy base. This is especially true if the base works as flooring with the right application.

Four shed base types exist, so you have more opportunity to find one suitable for your needs and the shed.

Wooden frame

This is a basic timber frame that lifts the shed off the ground.


This material can be laid anywhere on level ground for non-secure solutions. Ideal if you want something to take with you when you move house or if you live in a rented property.


Do you have leftover slabs or bricks from other paving projects? These can be used for the base of the shed.

Also, did you know we supply garden paving? Go on, check it out!


This is a choice to consider if you want something permanent. Stronger than other types of bases, it can be laid in whatever size shed you want to have.

Regardless of your chosen shed base, it’s vital you check the ground is level and strong enough to withstand the weight of the shed. Avoid putting the shed directly onto the surface, too. Not doing so risks waterlogging your shed and causing the structure to be damaged more quickly from bad weather.

Should I install a damp proof membrane below my shed?

Surprisingly, wooden sheds and bases don’t always need a damp membrane. However, using one for metal sheds, plastic sheds and plastic bases is considered a must.

Note: Using a membrane regardless of wood, metal or plastic minimises the appearance of dampness and can reduce the appearance of weeds beneath the shed.

Shed windows

Some sheds come pre-glazed, and some shed windows need to be installed. Not all sheds allow for glazing, but most do on different parts of the shed. It’s also worth noting not all manufacturers will install shed windows for free, so consider your options carefully.

Now when it comes to types of shed windows, you’ll normally find four main glazing types to choose from. We’ve broken down each type and found their unique styles to ensure you have the right one for your shed.

Forest Garden Tongue & Groove Pressure Treated Reverse Apex Shed with Double Door & Log Store 2


This is a traditional glazing solution. Polystyrene windows are ideal if your primary focus is keeping costs low.


Acrylic windows are another low-cost choice and are easy to keep clean. With that said, it’s not as flexible as materials like polycarbonate. So, there is a much higher risk of chipping.


A modern material, shed owners admire polycarbonate windows as they are incredibly unbreakable. It doesn’t lose colour, does not gain a yellow hue as time passes and is fixable with security screws. Ideal if you want more protection on your shed.


Whether you choose standard glass or safety glass depends on your requirements for security. Safety glass is designed to break into tiny pieces, unlike traditional glass which more commonly breaks into shards. It is also tougher when hit with impact.

Do you want or need windows in your shed?

If you’re using your shed for storage, shed windows aren’t typically needed. This is great for added security. So, if you don’t need windows, don’t worry about the design of the shed.

On the flip side, adding windows to a shed makes for better ventilation. So, if the shed is used for anything other than storage (as a workshop, for hobbies like reading, etc), then windows are ideal, especially if you’re going to spend long periods of time in there.

Shire Overlap Apex Shed - 6ft x 6ft

Do you need windows that open?

Opening windows are absolutely worth it for ventilation, but are they always needed? Well, no.

For example, you may need a natural skylight for plants. In this case, skylights might be preferable.

In addition to this, the more windows you have, the more access to the inside. This means your shed is at risk of animals, insects or even intruders getting into the shed. So, if you plan to keep important objects inside the shed, choosing to have sealed or no windows might be worth considering.

Forest Garden Shiplap Potting Shed 6

You’ve bought a shed so what now? Well, now you need to know the best ways to preserve that new shed. You can do that using our 10 shed maintenance tips! We also have advice to help you know how to waterproof your shed walls to prevent further damage.

Building a shed from scratch? Well, find out how to build a shed base first so it doesn’t end up on wonky or boggy ground.

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