Shedquarters: Make Working From Home Work For You

Shedquarters are growing in popularity amongst homeowners across New Zealand, but what exactly is a shedquarter and how could having one benefit you?

 

The first question you may be asking yourself right now is ‘what exactly is a shedquarter’? Essentially, a shedquarter is just another way of describing a tiny space in your backyard. Unlike a standard backyard garden shed which is typically only large enough to store your tools and maybe a lawnmower, a shedquarter is well constructed and acts more as an office space or retreat room which you can escape to in order to relax or focus. 

With COVID-19 forcing many people to work from home and children having to take school classes online, some people found their homes getting a bit crowded and opted to install a shedquarter in their backyard. Despite most of us having returned back to work these backyard offices are still an excellent way to create an inspiring and productive space that is close to home yet totally unique and separate from the rest of your house. They’re great for people who work remotely to have a space to escape to away from the distractions within their home. 

When you’re considering the design of the shedquarter it’s important to consider the visual elements including the colour, cladding, personalisations, and how it will fit in with your home and garden. Our environment has a huge impact on our energy levels, moods, and productivity so designing an effective space can be a total game changer. 

What style would you want the interior of your shedquarter to be? Is your preferred look cosy and decorative? Or do you lean more towards a minimalist and stylish aesthetic? Do you find yourself captivated by the latest design trends, or do you strive for classic elegance? A good place to begin is by deciding whether you lean towards modern or traditional stylings. If you like patterns, rich velvety colours, and lots of details then a traditional style could be perfect for you. However, if your personal style favours crisp colours, clean lines, and open space then you may be leaning towards modern design. 

Your design choices for your KiwiSpan shedquarter isn’t solely limited to the interior. We offer a fully customisable design experience which puts the power of choosing the size, cladding, doors, windows, roofing and colour scheme in your hands. We know that you don’t want to settle for a run of the mill shed, and with us, you don’t have to. 

Versatile and functional, KiwiSpan shedquarters are designed and built in New Zealand using high-grade materials and are completely customisable to your needs. With your existing landscape in mind, we work with you to create the perfect space for you to work, relax, and play. 

 

Explore our range of quality steel sheds today

 

Here’s How to Maintain Your New Shed

No matter the season, shed maintenance is vital but in winter it can be a particularly tough time for your shed. From strong gusty winds to heavy rain and even snow, your shed will need to resist and stand up against harsh weather.

Whether you’re looking after a simple garden shed or a large structure, we have you covered with some handy tips for keeping your shed maintained and prolonging its lifespan:

 

Check the gutters

KiwiSpan sheds are known for their robust quality and durability which makes them ideal for a variety of purposes. They’re designed to hold up against the elements, making them an enduring solution all year round.
One of the many great things about steel sheds is that they don’t require a lot of maintenance. However, to make sure that your shed remains in tip top condition you’ll need to keep an eye on the gutters. Firstly, you’re going to want to make sure that all of the gutters are still firmly attached to the structure and remove debris including leaves, branches, twigs and other miscellaneous debris that has gotten caught.

 

Watch out for damage

Whether it’s a cracked window, hole or dent, it’s important to fix problems as soon as they happen. However, sometimes issues aren’t obvious so you need to be proactive with your approach to looking out for future issues in order to prevent them.

 

Roof maintenance

As with your home, inspecting the roof of your shed for any leaks or damage is also important. If you don’t keep an eye on this, leaks in the roof could allow water to drip into your shed and damage what’s inside. Even if your roof seems to be in good condition, water can still make its way in so look out for discolouration on the ceiling and walls which may indicate that water is getting in.

Like with the gutters, it’s important to keep the roof of your shed clear too. If you live somewhere that experiences snowfall you will need to keep on top of removing it as excess snow and debris can cause weight issues and the constant presence of moisture can be damaging to your roof.

 

Keep the pests out

Have insects or rodents made themselves at home in your shed? Not only can this be annoying to you but they can also play a role in the deterioration of both your shed and what you’re storing inside of it.

To keep your shed free from pests here are some handy tips:

 

Okay shed owners now you’ve got some tips and tricks to keep your shed maintained. However, maybe your current shed is in such a state that you’re considering a new one or perhaps you’re considering a second shed. Either way, KiwiSpan offers a great range of fully customisable sheds to meet your exact needs.

Explore our range of quality steel sheds today

A Winning Plan…

When looking to make a new building addition to your property or home, the secret to success is in the planning stages. The good news – KiwiSpan has a nationwide network of experienced licensees, spanning from Northland to Christchurch. With a local shed expert readily available to you, our team can sit down and talk you through the planning process and give you specific advice on different KiwiSpan materials and shed designs. Perhaps more importantly, our team have local knowledge of the land and weather conditions that will impact your new building.  

Built to the highest standard and made to withstand the harshest of New Zealand conditions, here are some key things to consider and discuss with your KiwiSpan team when you are planning your new building; 

  • Building site  

The area or piece of land for your new building is critical to the planning stage. Is the area flat? How accessible is it? Will you require services like power and water? KiwiSpan have a range of options to consider so you can make the best decision in planning for your new building.

  • Usage – now and in the future 

How you plan to use your new shed, now and in the future, will be a major part of the planning process. Whether it be simply for storage, additional living space or auxiliary working space, all KiwiSpan sheds are fully customisable, so they can suit your specific lifestyle needs. Our team are very used to clients seeking multi-purpose sheds and can help you create a flexible space to meet your brief. 

  • Design and Style 

KiwiSpan has a building design solution for you – from garages and sleepouts to American style barns and farm storage or even aircraft hangers, KiwiSpan’s leading-edge design technology will help you plan to get maximum value out of your building investment. KiwiSpan can also offer a range of roofing and cladding colours, door and window heights and widths, to ensure you can choose the right style to complement your home or other buildings on the property

  • Consent process 

In 2020, new rules were introduced that meant low-risk building work, such as sheds, carports and sleepouts, in many cases no longer need council consent to be built. KiwiSpan will help you identify if consent is required, which will help speed up your decision making and ultimately the timing of when you can start using your new building. 

  • Peace of mind delivery 

It’s important in the planning process to identify how KiwiSpan will help you deliver to your plans. While our buildings are available in kitset form, our trusted local team can construct them on-site for ultimate peace of mind. 

Chat to your local licensee about your project and they’ll provide a free quote based in your exact specifications. Contact us HERE today to get the ball rolling on your next project.

Kiwi’s Most Loved Sheds

KiwiSpan has been building Kiwi sheds, garages and workshops since 2003. Built to the highest standard and made to withstand the harshest of New Zealand conditions – KiwiSpan sheds are built to last. Kiwi’s love sheds – perhaps it’s our love of being in the outdoors, or our No. 8 wire attitude, New Zealanders’ around the world are known as true innovators – and a lot of this started in the shed or workshop!

Operating for nearly 20 years, KiwiSpan has built sheds and buildings of every shape, size and style to suit kiwi lifestyles. Here are some of our most popular sheds; 

 

  • Storage Shed or Workshop

Everyone needs more storage. Whether it be for a hobby, your profession, or even a multifunctional space, a storage shed or workshop can be extremely valuable to your home. Built to New Zealand’s Building Code requirements, KiwiSpan storage sheds will stand the test of time, and increase the value of your property. 

 

  • American barns

Strength combined with style, KiwiSpan’s American style barns have grown in popularity as they complement any setting while providing ample space for whatever you need – storage, machinery or stock feed. Besides being customisable in a variety of sizes, lengths and heights, you also have build options that include partition walls, awnings, garaports and more. 

 

  • Farm Sheds 

KiwiSpan farm sheds are a popular choice as they are the toughest around, designed with New Zealand’s harshest rural environment in mind.  Built with hard-wearing and durable steel, by expert builders with years of experience, KiwiSpan’s unique framing system will provide as much space and flexibility as you need.

 

  • Garages

The kiwi classic. Garages have changed over the years from a small car-only building to now a multi-use space. Today we want garages not only to be super functional but also look stylish. From single, double and triple-bay garages, KiwiSpan’s success has been that we can totally customise a garage build to fit your needs, in most cases matching your rooflines and cladding for ultimate visual appeal. 

 

  • Habitable Sheds 

Often called a sleep out, habitable sheds have grown massively in popularity over the last few years. The shape and size of Kiwi families is changing – whether for elderly relations to stay, or some additional space for your teenage children, habitable sheds can maximise the use of your property. Your habitable sheds offer serious comfort as every building can be finished with quality insulation and aluminium joinery, to ensure your private space is fully protected from the elements. KiwiSpan can also offer a minor dwelling (small house) as a build option, that can boost your income, as a short-term rental investment. Check-in with your local KiwiSpan team on whether habitable sheds are available in your region. 

 

Whether it’s a shed, farm barn or sleepout, KiwiSpan has the solution for you. Contact us HERE today to get the ball rolling on your next project.

No Consents Required

One of the hardest and most complex parts of building or renovating is the consent process and dealing with the council, but there has been some exciting news for homeowners in late 2020.

Recent changes mean that low-risk building work, such as sheds, carports and sleepouts, in many cases no longer need council consent to be built.   

So if you’re considering a new addition to your home or property, it’s important to note that in a majority of cases, for the new building work not to require Council consent, these must be built by a manufacturer like KiwiSpan, or a licensed builder. With that in mind here are some options that no longer require Council consent;

  1.       Buildings up to a maximum floor area of 30 metres –  (these still can be built by non-professionals but require restrictions on building materials in accordance with the Building Code) 
  2.       Ground Floor Veranda’s or Awnings up to 30 metres
  3.       Carports up to 40 metres
  4.       Single-storey pole sheds and hay barns up to 110 square metres (but only in rural zones).

It’s important to note that any plumbing work to a new or current building still requires a building consent, and any electrical work will still have to be carried out by a registered electrician.  Different councils can also have different local by-laws but some, like Auckland Council, have a handy online tool to check if your shed needs consent 

For property owners, this has been welcome news, as it will save time and money when thinking about a new building or addition with the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) predicting it will cut out the need for over 9000 consents and $18m worth of consent fees for homeowners.

However, it is also important to note that KiwiSpan is available to ensure that whatever your building size, shape or usage, that you will fully comply with the local council regulations before we commence building. Because KiwiSpan builds are entirely customised, we can give you a world of possibilities.

Whether it’s a shed, farm barn or carport, KiwiSpan has the solution for you.

Contact us HERE today to get the ball rolling on your next shed project. 

How Our Sheds Withstand NZ’s Weather Conditions

New Zealand is a complex country to build for.

No really. We may not be a particularly large country, but you can find near-tropical climates up north and sub-arctic atmospheres down south. And because a decent percentage of New Zealand is within a half-hour of the ocean, salt deposits are a constant struggle when trying to maintain a building (it’s the reason paint costs so much more here than overseas).

Oh, and our position with regards to the ozone layer doesn’t help either. For our skin, and our structures.

So you can probably imagine by now, there’s a bit that goes into ensuring a shed built in New Zealand can stand up to whatever nature throws at it. And whilst we haven’t quite managed to manufacture tornado/tsunami/pink-and-white-terraces part II proof steel just yet (stay tuned), we can say with confidence that our sheds can – quite literally – take on most of what New Zealand chucks their way.

In fact, we’re so sure that we got the law involved. Being fully compliant not only with the 2004 Building Act, but we also decided to take on the 2002 Construction Contracts Act and the 1993 Consumer Guarantees Act as well.

We won’t bore you with the fine print, but in short – this all means we’re bound to ensure a quality product.

 

So, it’s all well and good to tell you that your new shed will be able to stand the test of time, but how exactly do we ensure this?

 

A unique analysis of the environment

Well firstly, when someone approaches us about getting a custom shed built for them, aside from purpose and size – we also have a look at what kind of environment the building site is.

This is because the different types of cladding are better suited for specific environmental situations.

NZ environments typically fall into one of three categories:

 

  Moderate

  Severe

  Very Severe

 

Based on which one your property falls into, we have a corresponding suitable cladding. There are also claddings made for specific purposes such as anti-condensation if required.

The best part of all this? From the outside, you’d hardly be able to tell the difference from one cladding to the next. So you don’t even need to worry about what your environment is like when determining what you want the shed to look like.

Technology these days, right?

 

If we’ve alleviated some concerns, or just piqued your interest, feel free to get in touch or learn more about the sheds we offer here.

What Makes a Good Shed Design?

Being a distributor of custom sheds, we know from experience that sheds can, quite literally, come in all shapes and sizes.

Despite this, however, there are a few universal factors that you should be able to find in any shed worth its weight in gold.

And because we just love to talk about sheds, we figured we’d share a few with you.

 

Sturdiness

This might seem to be a no brainer, but there’s quite an art to building a sturdy shed. If you promise not to tell anyone, we’ll let you in on a secret: it’s all in the frames.

Having a well-structured frame is everything when it comes to ensuring that ­a shed stays standing through the harsher side of the climate.

Now, this might seem simple, but the truth is, every different size and design of shed requires a unique size and design of frame. 

This is why when designing a shed, we always recommend getting an expert in to determine the exact dimensions of framing required. And of course, anyone who creates a shed with us can rest assured we’ll take care of this (and everything else) with the utmost care and expertise.

 

Cladding

The materials your shed is made up of will ultimately determine how durable it will be against the elements.

And this isn’t just due to the weather. You also have to take into account salt deposits from nearby oceans, and the intense UV rays New Zealand has to deal with due to our proximity to the opening in the ozone layer. 

Thankfully, there’s a wide range of different claddings designed to handle these different conditions.

 

Built for purpose

A shed is defined as “a structure, usually freestanding, used for storage or shelter”. With such a broad definition, you can see why sheds come in so many different shapes and sizes.  

But this does not mean that one size fits all. 

What works for housing cattle is probably not going to suit the needs of someone looking to store their aircraft (or vice-versa). 

A well-designed shed should have a specific purpose in mind and should be well-designed for that specific purpose. ­­­­

There’s a reason we deal in custom sheds, after all.

Since you’re here, we imagine you’re at least a little bit interested in becoming a shed owner. Perhaps we can interest you with our range of custom sheds? Click here to learn more.

Why Custom is Always King

These days, there are more options than ever when it comes to building and owning a shed. And if you’ve been thinking about becoming a shed owner, you’ve probably taken a gander at some of the different options on offer. 

We’re pretty confident that custom made sheds (such as ours) are still the way to go (and we’re not being biased, we promise). 

 

Here’s why:

 

Customizable to hobbies

Firstly, the great thing about getting a custom shed means it’s made specifically for you. Sure, you might not be the only person who plans on getting a shed, but your specific needs could be totally different from those of the next shed owner. 

Are you looking for a new home office space? We can do that. Or maybe you’re hoping to make your shed into a space for that specific hobby of yours. Talk to us, we can probably offer plenty of customisation that’ll help you do what you want to do. Pre-built options, on the other hand, can only offer a one-size-fits-all approach. And sometimes – that’s not enough. 

 

Colour and design

Another advantage of getting a custom shed made for you is that you get some input on the design and colour. KiwiSpan has several design options on offer.

Perhaps you’re looking to match your home or another building on the property. Or maybe you have a particular colour in mind?

We can help you implement any design choices you’d like to see with your shed, all in order to bring to life something that is truly yours.

 

Durability

We pride our sheds on their ability to withstand the elements too.

Despite its relatively small size, New Zealand weather can vary pretty drastically depending on the region you’re in. And since most places in the country are relatively close to the water, buildings have to be resistant to high levels of salt in our air. Furthermore, due to that big old hole in the ozone layer above us, we’ve also got to make buildings that can stand intense, direct UV rays. 

In short – buildings in New Zealand need to be built to withstand the elements. We understand this and ensure our sheds are always up to the task.

We speak from experience when we say owning a shed is awesome – but if you are having to replace or perform unneeded maintenance each passing year, that feeling will diminish in no time.

Get a shed that can hold its own against whatever the environment throws at it – we know ours can. 

 

Convinced? Feel free to browse our range of sheds and check our 3D shed designer to explore some of the possibilities on offer here.

It’s Now Easier to get a Barn (and Why You Should Consider it)

Hay there, have you heard the good news about barns? 

 

If not, we’d love to tell you about it.

Building a barn is now easier.

This used to be a bit of a process. It wasn’t just about finding land and building materials. You also had to acquire a building consent. This was a process that would take time, money, resources and require several permissions.

All this was before you can even think about building the thing. 

However, it’s been announced that single-story barns under 110m2 are now exempt from this requirement. Provided you stick to those specs, you’re good to go.

The only other catch is that you actually have to use the barn as a barn. So, as cool as converted barn bars/wedding venues/stores are, you’ll still need a building consent for this kind of work.  

But it’s worth noting that this exemption covers any sort of structure (enclosed, semi-enclosed or open) used for farming-related activities in rural areas, not just hay barns (despite the earlier pun). 

Okay, that’s great – but why should you care?

Well, despite the stereotypical idea of an old, red wooden building found on old-timey farms, modern sheds are actually an incredibly useful utility building with a range of valuable uses. KiwiSpan offers a wide range of custom barn solutions for a multitude of uses. 

 

Storing livestock

So using a barn as a place for keeping various animals is probably the most obvious one, but you don’t necessarily need to be a livestock farmer to make use of this.

Raising animals can not only be a profitable, and fun activity. Studies have also shown that raising children around animals can help with allergy immunities and self-confidence.

More and more people are choosing to raise chickens (scrambled eggs for breakfast anymore?), and for all the rider’s out there – barns can also serve well as a stable for horses as well.

Thanks to the recent influx of “cute cow playing with beach ball” videos online (Who would’ve thought that cats’ time in the spotlight was limited?), adopting a cow as a pet rather than a future meal has also become more popular in recent years. 

 

Actually, storing a lot of things.

If you have a larger property to maintain, then a barn is the perfect place to store some of your larger equipment, such as ride-on lawnmowers, without cluttering up the garage. 

KiwiSpan barns are also much more weather resistant and much more stylish than the old weighted tarpaulin solution too. In fact, even if you don’t have a fleet of farming machinery to keep out of the rain, a barn can make for a pretty solid storage option for any property, and it’s not all about work.

Barns provide plenty of storage for play too. Keeping your toys, as you can store quad bikes, cars and jet skis and boats 

 

Interested? Get in touch with us to see if your planned shed meets these requirements. Or feel free to browse our range of barns and other shed solutions here.

4 Ways to Make Some Pocket Money with a Shed (That Isn’t Cattle Farming)

A shed can be a lot of things, from a haven for storing all your DIY-related needs to a potential man cave to escape to for a few hours of “you-time” in the evening. 

It’s also a great little key to kickstart a side hustle. That’s right, sheds can be great little money-makers with just a bit of know-how. Despite this, it seems that farmers and woodworkers are the only ones to have realised it so far. 

This is a bit of a shame because there are actually quite a few ways to rake in a little extra dough with a shed – So we’ve put together a few ways you can too, without shearing a single sheep or milking a single cow. 

 

A home office for your small business

 

We’ve all been hard at work in the office only to catch a glimpse of the perfect summer weather going on outside. Now imagine working in an office that allowed you to take advantage of that good weather.

A shed built to function as a home office could be that very place.

There are a lot of upsides when it comes to working from home – which is probably why it’s becoming more and more common nowadays. However, it’s often nice to have a dedicated workspace, somewhere you can set up to suit your professional needs perfectly and rev up your productivity (and thus rake in more dollars).

Also, think of the money you’d save on office rental funds and petrol – not to mention the time you won’t be spending in traffic.

 

A sleepout for long and short term stays.

 

Sleepouts are a fantastic way to give yourself a bit of respite from the teenager without losing the ability to check up on them when you need to. 

But what about after the teenager finally moves out? Before you go using your sleepout as an extra storage unit, consider it’s potential as a rental accommodation first. There are always students looking to skip the student flat part of uni life – and they’re willing to pay good money to do so. 

Or perhaps you’ve decided that you’d rather not replace one young adult with another? Well then consider posting it up on Airbnb and other similar places as a short term rental property. 

Either or could sound like a pocket full of change before long. 

 

 

Growing vegetables 

 

Whilst we tend to think of outdoor gardens and glasshouses as the place for growing your own produce – a shed makes for a perfect place to grow (and sell) your own vegetables.

Via the use of skylights or ceiling mounted artificial lights (we can help with that), not only can you get those vegetables growing in no time, the indoor nature of shed gardens means you can continue yielding a healthy crop regardless of the weather, and all year around. 

 

 

Rental photography studio

 

Photographers are always on the lookout for an interesting location to rent out for a few hours on their next project. And considering the funds, they’ve already sunk into their equipment, whatever you charge will seem like a mere drop in the bucket. 

More and more people are using sheds as a darkroom for their photography needs. KiwiSpan provides several solutions that can make achieving this much easier, such as foregoing skylights, etc. 

 

Have we ignited your inner-entrepreneur? Then you may be interested in checking out some of the sheds we offer here. Talk to one of our licensees about your specific needs so we can customize and create a space that’s perfect for you.