The Walden Effect: Farming, simple living, permaculture, and invention.

How much does it cost to make a storage building?

Storage building with first roof rafters onWe've decided to wait on putting the tin around the skylight until we're forecast to have some sustained warm weather, but otherwise the homemade storage building is under roof and enclosed to the same level as the pre-made buildings you can buy at Lowes.  Of course, we've still got a lot of work to do --- painting the exterior,  adding gutters, sealing cracks, adding insulation, throwing some linoleum on the floor, and finishing the interior walls.  But I thought now would be a good time to crunch the numbers and see whether it was smart to build the structure ourselves rather than buying one pre-made.

The finished exterior of the storage buildingOur building is 8 feet by 20 feet (with the last four feet on the long side being a raised loft.)  The total cost in supplies has been $1,063.39, or $6.65 per square foot. We could have gotten a metal shed from Home Depot for a similar price per square foot, but it would have only been six feet tall (which would have bumped Mark's head!)  A similar sized wooden shed on the lot at Lowes (with more adequate head room) costs three times as much, is constructed out of two by twos instead of two by fours, and only has one small window.  I think we got a good deal --- plus we learned an awful lot about building in the process!

This post is part of our Building a Storage Building from Scratch series.  Read all of the entries:

Part 1: Foundation
Part 2: Floor
Part 3: Walls and scavenging lumber
Part 4: Adding the loft
Part 5: The roof
Summing it up:

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About us: Anna Hess and Mark Hamilton spent over a decade living self-sufficiently in the mountains of Virginia before moving north to start over from scratch in the foothills of Ohio. They've experimented with permaculture, no-till gardening, trailersteading, home-based microbusinesses and much more, writing about their adventures in both blogs and books.

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I posted a pic of my $1200 shed I built a couple years ago its on my blog 8 x 12 it came out at $12.5 a foot.

Comment by moontree ranch Sun Jan 31 13:04:35 2010
That's a very nice looking shed! We're hoping that the whole thing, once we finish the inside, will come to about $10 per square foot. Did you finish your inside or is your figure for a shed at about the stage ours is at now?
Comment by anna Sun Jan 31 13:09:17 2010
Its just for storage, Open stud bays with 2' deep shelves on two walls (one short, one long) I got tired of hauling tools and equipment to the basement when I needed to unload the truck to haul larger loads of material...Now I just back in and its a 10 foot trip! I just put power in it last year...when its nasty out...I can now run my electric log splitter inside...and with the lights in there now I can find stuff at night...what a concept eh? another bonus of the power is I put on an exterior light that shines toward the front door of the house...helpful when getting home after dark
Comment by moontree ranch Sun Jan 31 14:55:13 2010
Interior work space becomes awfully exciting at this time of year --- I understand! :-)
Comment by anna Sun Jan 31 15:28:52 2010
this is so helpful in my shack building process! thanks guys!
Comment by nellie Thu Aug 26 12:54:58 2010
How's the shack coming? You need to come over and visit before you head back south!
Comment by anna Thu Aug 26 13:41:32 2010

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