Shed Building - Important Tips
Building a shed yourself can be a rewarding experience knowing that you have built your ideal steel building with your very own hands. We know that DIY builders get a great deal of satisfaction from the shed building experience, standing back at the end of a job well done, admiring their handy work on a shed they built themselves.
Wide Span Sheds is proud to supply full shed kits to Australians looking to build a shed themselves. In fact, we’ve supplied thousands of Wide Span Sheds kits to DIY customers over the years. Although this DIY approach is a popular way to erect a shed, there are some key factors that the “Owner/Builder” (an owner of a shed who will also build the shed themselves) should keep in mind.
1. Tools and Knowledge
We’re not going to sugar coat it...building your own shed isn’t always a walk in the park. You would be amazed as to how many times we’ve heard people assuming that erecting a shed is just a larger scale version of assembling an Ikea product. The DIY shed builder will need to spend time planning out the build and have the ability to follow instructions. The owner/builder should also be comfortable with general construction processes.
When building a Wide Span Shed, most of our components are cut to length and drilled to suit the correct bolt placement. However, it will be necessary to cut and drill some components on site which means that there are certain power tools that you may need such as an angle grinder which can be dangerous in untrained hands.
In saying that, Wide Span Sheds has heard some fantastic feedback from our DIY customers, particularly praising the construction manual that comes with each of our shed kits. This manual along with other supporting documents gives you a step-by-step process of erecting a shed. Again, this approach is not for everyone and requires a fair amount of knowledge and the right tools. But we have had a number of owner/builder’s tell us how they really enjoyed the experience once they understood the process.
2. Getting the Necessary Support
Building your own shed doesn’t need to be lonely experience. We recommend you get some help, a mate, family member or even a contractor, during the building process. Not only will this help share the work load, but will also be safer. It’s also important to know what customer support options you have for whoever you buy from. There is nothing worse than receiving the materials for your shed and not having someone to contact if there are any issues.
Wide Span Sheds is proud of our excellent customer service team that is only a phone call away to provide assistance. Our team isn’t necessarily going to hold your hand throughout the build process, but they will be more than happy to point you in the right direction if you get stuck at a certain point.
3. Approvals and Permits
Just because you’re building your shed yourself doesn’t mean that you are exempt from permits and council approvals required to erect a building. Building a shed will normally require some form of approval from your local council. For example, some councils may require a development permit while others may require a building permit, or both. It is a good idea to contact a private building certifier to work out what permits are required. Speaking to someone in your local council is another way to ensure what is required to build your shed. As a DIY builder, you may even be required to obtain an owner/builder permit. All of this will vary from state to state.
Here at Wide Span Sheds, we have found the best way for you to obtain council approval is to take your Wide Span Sheds quote to a local building certifier and sit down with them to discuss your building requirements so that you don’t waste precious time or funds.
4. Plumbing and electrical services
Depending on the size of your shed, you will probably need to connect the run-off from roof to the stormwater connection on your property. It is also likely that you will be installing lighting or power points in your shed. Both plumbing and electrical work must be done by licensed plumbers and electricians, so keep that in mind when planning your DIY build.
Don’t forget that DIY work is not exempt from occupational health and safety (OHS) requirements. Most Australian states require owner/builders along with any other person working on the build site to complete an owner/builder course and obtain an OHS White Card. Some states even require you to keep records of OHS activities like General Safety Induction Training. Owner/builders should consider their OHS obligations in the planning of their build. Some of the OHS rules to consider include:
- maintain the safety of all occupants, visitors and workers on the site;
- minimise your own risk;
- do not create unreasonable disturbance or risk to your neighbours;
- do not do anything that will damage the infrastructure of your property;
- only use materials that meet or exceed Australian standards;
Fortunately for Wide Span Sheds customers, our sheds are professionally engineered for each specific site and are designed in line with Australian building safety standards.
Tied into safety requirements, the DIY builder may want to consider insurance for any tradesmen involved in the build, as well as yourself. You should ensure that all tradesman who come onto your property have public liability insurance. You should also check if your own home and contents insurance covers any workers injured while on your property. And last but not least, you should also check your own income protection policy to make sure you are covered if you are injured during any DIY work while erecting your shed.
This doesn’t cover absolutely everything there is to consider as an owner/builder, but we hope this will get you started on what to think about when looking at the DIY approach.
For further advice or a quote on your very own shed kit, our Wide Span Sheds team are only a call away. We’re open 7 days a week from 7am to 6pm so give us a call at 1300 94 33 77.
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