What Size Storage Shed or Garden Shed Do You Need?

ideal size storage shed garden shed

When asking the question of what size storage shed or garden shed is best for you, there are a few different, very important aspects to consider. Specifically, you’ll want to assess:

1. What do you want a shed for?

This is your specific storage space we’re talking about. Therefore, your storage space should be big enough to fit what you need it to fit – and in such a way that you’re not digging for tools or other items every time you open the door.

Your ideal storage shed or garden shed should tidy up your life, not add one more source of clutter.

2. How big is your property?

This isn’t a “keeping up with the Joneses” kind of question. It’s a call to carefully consider how much shed your backyard, side yard or other part of your yard can handle.

You’ll want a natural feel to your property, complete with all the psychological, aesthetic and practical benefits it brings. So take a good look at what you’ve got, and map out how much shed your space can handle.

3. What restrictions from your local governmental jurisdiction could affect your decision?

Yup, we’re talking government bureaucracy here. Some of it’s reasonable; some of it’s unnecessarily nitpicky. Regardless, you’ll want to check up on it.

Chances are you should be in the clear. But chances aren’t really worth playing around with in this matter, particularly if you have certain specifications and extra add-ons in mind.


Let’s look further into each one of those considerations for your new storage shed or garden shed in the making.

storage shed best size

What is your shed meant to hold?

All three of our listed questions above are equally important. But this one is probably the most personal.

What exactly do you want or need a shed for? Regardless of whether we’re talking about a storage shed, garden shed, or something else, you wouldn’t be searching the internet about it unless you had stuff to store.

As such, let’s get down to brass tacks. And lawn mowers. And rakes, trowels, Christmas trimmings, extra fridges or freezers, and all the other items you’re hoping to get out of the house and into a more suitable space.

Let’s start with the basics…

Standard garden shed sizes can be as small as six-foot by eight-foot, whereas standard storage shed sizes can range up to 14 by 32. Eight by 10… 9 by 12… 10 by 16… and 12 by 20 are all fairly common as well.

Yet that doesn’t mean you’re limited to those specifications. It doesn’t mean there’s anything wrong with choosing them, but we don’t just want “not wrong.” We want “the perfect personal fit.”

To find those figures, you might want to go as far as measuring everything you want to store. This is particularly true if sizing up stationary objects isn’t your forte.

And while you’re at it, you might want to consider these options:

  • Would it make sense to leave one wall completely open? That way, you can put a set of shelves, a workbench or a pegboard there. These features can straighten up your ideal area amazingly.
  • Would a loft or second floor be a good fit for you? While both ultimately open up your storage possibilities, keep in mind that they’ll also require stairs to access. If you’re looking to fit larger items on the first level, make sure they’ll still have some wiggle room to make the process hassle-free.

And, what about the future? Obviously, none of us can predict exactly everything that’s going to happen a second from now, much less a generation later. Life can’t be that predictable, and we suppose it’d be boring if it was. At the same time, there are some aspects we can safely assume. Relatively so, anyway.

For example, imagine your children growing up and moving out. That typically means they begin with a small starter apartment… where it’s an easy bet they won’t be able to fit all their stuff. So won’t Mom and Dad do them a favor and store all their stuff until they get a bigger place?

Trust us. It happens all the time. For that matter, we see a whole lot of other life changes that call for wiggle room when it comes to storage space and needs. Therefore, keep an open mind about how you can use your shed a few years – or a few decades – down the road. Buy a shed that is made to last, so you can use it for multiple purposes.

That’s a lot to consider, we know. But keep in mind the big picture, which is a decluttered life and one very relieved you.

storage shed garden shed best size for property

How big is the property you’re putting your storage shed or garden shed on?

Again, this isn’t a measuring contest, though measuring does come into the picture. You don’t just want your new storage shed or garden shed to fit on your property. You want it to fit well, complete with room to run around it, behind it, and in front of it.

In other words, you want it to look good on your land. Maybe even good enough to make the neighbors jealous.

Okay, we’ll admit it. Perhaps it is a bit about keeping up with the Joneses…

But just a bit. Mostly, it’s about what’s going to fit on your property to your ideal visual and size specifications.

With that in mind, take the dimensions you came up with for Question #1, and go eye up your backyard. (Or side yard. Or front yard.) Does it fit?

If it doesn’t, don’t worry too much just yet. Have you considered that second floor or loft discussed before? Or maybe you just need a structure that’s longer than it is wide, or wider than it is long. You might very well have room to work with while plotting out your ideal garden shed or storage shed.

If it does fit, where would it ideally go? Scope out your sweet spot, taking into account how, more than likely, you want it to be some place convenient.

  • For garden shed shoppers, we’re guessing you’ll want it close to the garden. Though if you’re trying to count some steps, it might be worthwhile to set it a little further away.
  • For storage shed seekers, consider how heavy the items are that you’ll be moving. Of course, if you’ve got a dolly or two, and a solid walkway to take them on, that might not be a problem.

No matter which way you look at it, your garden shed or storage shed should suit you… right down to your property size and shape.

If it makes the Joneses eat their hearts out in the process? Well, we won’t stand in your way.

storage shed garden shed government jurisdiction restrictions

Are there regulations from your local governmental jurisdiction to consider when choosing a storage shed or garden shed?

We’re not saying we like this question, and we doubt you do either. But it is what it is, so let’s deal with it together.

What building codes might you have to consider? Check with your local jurisdiction (township, city, borough, county, etc.) first. Some may require:

  • Zoning Permits
  • Construction or Building Permits
  • Complete Site Plan (including aerial view)
  • Storm Run-Off or Drainage Plan
  • Image of Proposed Structure

Some of the things they will typically consider include:

  • Structure placement in designated historic area
  • Setback from property line
  • Distance from other structures on property
  • Height restrictions
  • Size (square footage) limits
  • Percentage of property covered by structures

Fortunately, a simple phone call will lead you in the right direction. Do a quick search for your township, county, city or borough decision makers. They should be able to answer your questions and either assure you that you won’t be getting into trouble… or tell you how to avoid it. And there will likely be a minimal fee involved.

Just make sure you verify this information BEFORE you order your shed!

perfect size storage shed garden shed

A garden shed or storage shed that’s all-around best for you

Your garden shed or storage shed should be made to your specifications. It should fit your property and keep you safe from unwanted government attention.

And it should be a quality structure from start to finish, down to the last board and nail. Don’t settle for anything less than what you deserve to clean up your house, your to-do list and your life.

Your ideal might be a one-story structure or a two-story. With or without a loft. Perfectly square or elongated. Up front, out back or elsewhere – and always tailored to national, state and local rules and regulations.

So what size storage shed or garden shed is best for you? Now you’ve got the tools necessary to know!

  Archived Articles