Last updated Friday, October 28th, 2022
The tiny house trend is still going strong. Living the less is more lifestyle can be the way to go. Sheds provide an affordable way to live large without excess square feet. These small buildings can be customized to become just about anything you could want, including a new home.
The talented crew at Colonial Barns & Sheds has been bringing smiles to clients’ faces for more than 40 years. We’re excited to work with you and bring your shed ideas to life!
Can Sheds be Livable?
Yes! You have the opportunity to turn these little buildings into tiny homes. And if you then want to live in your upgraded shed, that’s totally possible.
What is the Difference Between a Shed and a Livable Shed?
A basic shed is an outbuilding considered good for storage. A livable shed has everything that a traditional shed has with some additions. The dwelling will need water and power. A restroom is a must, but a composting toilet can be used in a pinch.
What is a Habitable Shed?
This type of shed doubles as a residence. Every amenity you would have in a regular house would be in this shed, perhaps just on a smaller scale. There should be a kitchen, power, bathroom, heating, air conditioning, running water, windows, doors and at least one place to sleep.
How do I Convert a Shed to a Livable Area?
Transforming a shed into livable space can sound intimidating. If you’re not all that handy, consider hiring professionals. Livable sheds typically need:
- Drywall, Baseboards and Trim. Finishing the walls with drywall makes a huge difference. The icing on the cake is trim added around windows and doors. Baseboards give a polished look as they cover where flooring and walls meet.
- Electricity. There are so many items that need power to operate. The average person couldn’t live without lights, appliances or portable devices. Adding wiring, outlets and a circuit breaker takes planning and skill.
- Facilities. A bathroom may not be the most exciting room of the home, but it’s certainly one of the most appreciated. Decide what kind of toilet you’ll be using. If a composting toilet’s not your style, understand that plumbing will need to be addressed.
- Flooring. Install your choice of flooring atop the subfloor.
- Heating and Cooling. However you want to heat and cool your shed house will need to be handled.
- Insulation. Adding extra insulation can keep your shed house warm and cozy in winter but cooler in summer. Don’t skip any areas. Insulate the floor, ceiling and walls for best results.
- Plumbing. The shed must be plumbed for a functional kitchen and complete bathroom.
- Proper Drainage. Address how to keep rainwater flowing away from your shed house. Consider adding gutters with spouts or French drains to help any rainwater flow away from your dwelling. Flood vents can also be a good addition.
Can I Build and Live in a Shed on my Property?
It depends. Zoning laws in certain cities, states and counties can prohibit living in a shed house. Some homeowner associations (HOA)s are also against this idea. Typically, the more rural the area, the less strict the covenants. Do your research.