This is probably one of the most frequently-asked questions gardeners ask themselves. Knowing you need a shed is one thing, but how on earth do you work out what size to get?

We’ve put together a useful guide that should steer you towards the right answer for you and your garden. Once you’re done reading it, you should have a much better idea of the options available – and which shed will be on your to-buy list.

How much space do you have?

Hartwood 6' x 8' Overlap Apex Shed

Space is essential. Some gardens are much smaller than others. A 6’ by 8’ shed, like this Hartwood overlap apex shed for example, is the most popular size on our site, but you may not have room for it. Consider where you will site it and how much room there is to accommodate the base and the shed itself. Go for as big a shed as you can, without overwhelming the surroundings.

rowlinson plastic utility cabinet

If space really is tight, there are numerous small garden storage ideas you can choose from. A plastic utility cabinet might work well for small garden items that need to be kept out of the rain. Take a look at the space available and think about the collection of items you want to store. This should help you get the most appropriate shed for your needs.

The style can determine how much space you need

If you don’t have room to site a shed in another part of your garden, don’t worry. Pent or lean-to sheds can provide the perfect solution. These are designed to be positioned by the side of a property, which means you don’t need to find room elsewhere or have room all around your shed.

It’s also worth thinking about where the door should be positioned. In some cases, the door will be at the end of the shed. In other cases, it will be on one of the longer sides. Which would make the most sense to have in your case? If you are very tight on space, metal sheds might be a better option. This is because some of them come with sliding doors rather than ones that must be swung open.

6’ by 4’ Rowlinson double door pent metal shed

A good example of this is the 6’ by 4’ Rowlinson double-door pent metal shed. The doors are on the longer side, and each one slides fully open to allow easy access for larger items such as lawnmowers and even bikes. This is another point to consider. You may be able to open the door and walk in and out with ease, but do you still have enough room to get the lawnmower, bicycle or other larger garden implements in and out without a struggle? This is where door size and positions really become important.

Look out for apex and reverse apex options as well. An apex roof refers to one where the door is on one of the ends, with the roof sloping down to each side. A reverse apex roof has the slope of the roof coming down towards the door. Bear this in mind if you intend to install guttering and a nearby water butt to catch rainwater. If you are going to do this, an apex shed will mean the guttering won’t get in the way of the door opening.

What do you need to store in your shed?

Obviously if you have a lawnmower or a bike or two, you’re going to need something that gives you enough room. However, even if space is at a premium, a bike store could be used for both of these things.

However, other garden items such as forks, spades, fertiliser, soil bags and so on also take up room. Take the opportunity to get rid of anything you don’t need, but remember you will almost certainly acquire other things that you’ll want to store safely in the future, too. In other words – don’t buy too small!

Great options in a range of finishes

The good thing to remember is that you can get a wide range of sheds in different sizes in all the main finishes – wood, plastic and metal. There are advantages to each one, so consider the options carefully. Wooden sheds don’t come with sliding doors, for example, so if you have hit on this as a space-saving solution, make sure you go for something else instead.

One final point – remember you don’t have to get one very large shed if you have room for it. You could get two of complementary designs instead. If you have DIY items you want to store in a shed along with garden tools, you could get two smaller sheds so you have enough storage for each.

As you can see, once you look at the different options you are bound to find something ideal for your requirements.