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.
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:
- Keep the grass around the perimeter of the shed trimmed.
- Don’t stack firewood against the outside of the shed.
- Don’t store rubbish inside the shed as it will attract insects and rodents.
- Sweep or vacuum your shed semi-regularly. Pests like to settle in places which seem undisturbed so having a regular cleaning schedule will help keep them out.
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
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;
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.
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.
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.
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.
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;
- 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)
- Ground Floor Veranda’s or Awnings up to 30 metres
- Carports up to 40 metres
- 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.
Thinking of Building Stables? Here’s What You Need to Know
If you’re considering getting some stables made, you probably don’t need to be told that there’s a bit to consider. Unlike other types of storage units, stables are used to house living, high-maintenance animals. And as we’re sure you’re aware, rearing horses is more of a lifestyle than it is a hobby, and requires a ton of time and effort – so you’ll also want to get their accommodation just right (remember, the better they feel, the easier they’ll be to handle).
To help make this process a bit easier, we’ve put together a list of things to consider when planning your stables (although rest assured, when building with us, we’ll be with you all the way).
Being active animals, horses don’t like being stabled. In fact, they’d rather be out in the field all day and night. So in order to make their stay that little bit more comfortable, you’ll want to make sure they’re given enough space to rest comfortably.
The minimum size requirement for a sleeping bay is 3.6mx3.6m, but you should go bigger if you can. The general rule of thumb is that all sleeping bays should be big enough for the horse to lie down comfortably in, without having to bunch up against the wall.
Likewise, you’ll want to keep any entrances as wide as possible, giving your animals plenty of room to pass in and out of (this is typically between 1.5-2m).
When it comes to internal structures (such as the walls between individual sleeping bays), we recommended you use a mesh-like design rather than a solid wall.
This allows for two things. Firstly, the animals will be able to see each other, which will make them less prone to distress (and again, make them easier to work with).
You’ll also experience superior ventilation around the stables, which is optimal for the health of its residents. These are also good reasons to include a few windows in your stables too (not to mention the increase in sunlight they’ll allow for).
Getting the right locks for your stables is a fine art. Because you’ll often be guiding an animal whilst dealing with, locking and unlocking your stables, you’ll want a locking system that’s simple enough to operate while multitasking (and often with only one hand to spare).
That said, horses are not unintelligent animals. It’s not unheard (no pun intended) of for horses to figure out how to unlock a simple hatch lock and go for a nightly galavant. In fact, it’s even been reported that some horses will not only break themselves out but will then also proceed to bust their friends out too. Whilst you can’t fault their loyalty to each other, this could be somewhat disastrous to deal with.
As with so many things in life, finding that perfect locking system is all about balance.
There are quite a few options when it comes to stable flooring, each with their own pros and cons.
- Sand is probably the flooring that is used most often. It drains waste/water very well and is gentle on the horses’ hooves and legs. However, it will need to be replaced somewhat often, and seeing as horses tend to eat off the floor, it can get in amongst their feed and can cause health issues if too much is digested.
- Wood is another common (and more traditional) flooring option. It’s easy on the animals themselves and is warm, and slip-resistant when dry. It will need to be treated as not to retain odour and stand up against waste, however, and repairing it over the years will build up in cost.
- Concrete has become quite popular in recent years. It’s durable, affordable and low maintenance. What it isn’t, however, is good for the animals long term, and you may need to consider fitting certain areas of the stables with rubber mats for the comfort of your horses.
- Lastly, we have asphalt. It’s easier on the animal’s legs and can be long lasting when applied correctly. However, due to its porous nature, it will need to be disinfected somewhat often and can crack if applied too thinly.
Happy homes make for happy horses. Contact us here today to get the ball rolling on your next shed-based project.
The A-Z’s of Sheds
The dictionary definition of a shed reads as simply “a structure on your property that isn’t connected to your home”. By that definition, the options of what a shed is, and what it can do for you is pretty limitless.
With our customised approach, this is a pretty accurate description. We understand that everyone has different needs, and we pride ourselves on our ability to meet those needs, whatever they may be.
However, sometimes, with such a wide range of capabilities and options, it can become harder to nail down exactly what you want (and therefore need) in a shed. So we’ve put together a rundown of the different basic categories of sheds to help you find a starting point for your next project.
For those of you that grew up with parents that had a humble shack in your garden to store gardening equipment – that was technically a storage shed (although nowadays we tend to think bigger).
As the name implies, the purpose of these sheds is to, well, store things. The details of what specific features these sheds have will largely come down to what exactly it is you’ll be storing.
However, regardless of what you put in them, these sheds need to be able to protect your stored goods and keep them in pristine condition (read how we protect your valuables from NZ’s harshest conditions here.
Another shed type that says what it does in the name – habitable sheds are sheds that can serve as short term accommodation or as an extra, detached bedroom for your main residence.
These sheds can also be combined with other shed types (such as garages and workshops) to serve as an area to relax in between long hours on the workbench (read: mancave).
We’ve all got an image of an old, red farmhouse when someone mentions the term “barn” (and we probably got it from a painting or childhood storybook).
Unsurprisingly, a barn has traditionally referred to a shed that is specifically for agricultural use. Their trademark shape and design actually come from this original usage, as they were built to accommodate for windy days and getting the most out of the passing sun.
Nowadays, barns can be used for general storage, and their trademark design is more for show (as weather mitigating technology has advanced a bit). With their aesthetically pleasing appearance and spacious interior, they are a great general-purpose asset for storage and vehicle housing, as well as continuing to excel in their traditional agricultural usage.
Has this helped clear things up? You can always contact us for further info or to discuss your next project here.
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).
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.
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.
How to Make a Small Shed Feel Bigger
When it comes to sheds (something we’d like to think we know a bit about), there’s this idea that short of owning a multi-acre section, sheds are just a place to store tools and collect lichen.
Frankly, this is something of a tragedy, as there’s nothing quite like owning a shed. Whether it’s a man cave to escape too or a sleepout that provides your eldest with a small brush with independence (and more you-time for you) or a place to spend some quality time on a passion project.
The bottom line is, just about anyone, with any sized section (yes, even city folk) can own the kind of shed worth spending time in. However, if size still seems like an issue for you, here are a few tips you can use to make any small shed feel bigger.
Interior designers have been using colours to manipulate how big or small a room seems for years. Whilst dark colours tend to create a cosy and intimate (or simply put, a smaller) atmosphere, lighter, more neutral colours have been shown to make indoor areas seem instantly more spacious.
Our favourites lighter neutrals include Zincalume, Tatiana, Cloud and Gull Grey. You can make further use of this trick by incorporating the chosen colour of the walls into your furniture (i.e. a similarly painted workbench for a workshop, or by using the same shade in your furniture upholstery for sleepouts), as this will strengthen the feelings of extra spaciousness.
Invite in the Natural Light
Whilst aiding the “largening” effect that neutral colours create, natural light is also a reliable tool unto itself when it comes to making smaller spaces feel bigger – due to the airy and relaxed atmosphere it creates.
KiwiSpan offers a range of window configurations and translucent shed roofing. Consider making use of this natural resource when designing your next shed.
Choose Multi-Functional Furniture
One of the simplest ways to keep a smaller space from feeling claustrophobic is to keep it from becoming overcrowded, either due to excess clutter or by having too much furniture.
The easy fix for this is to simply opt for multi-functional furniture when possible. A common example of this would be to use a workbench that also has a compartment for storing your tools. Other common examples include a sofa bed for sleepouts.
Have any of these tips inspired you? If so, feel free to check out our website and custom shed designers to explore what possibilities may be available to you as a future shed owner.
5 Reasons You Need a Shed
Sheds have a lot more to offer than people might initially think. Improving your quality of life, they have the ability to transform your day-to-day in a number of surprising ways.
Here are just a few of the reasons it might be time to consider building a shed:
Having an outdoor storage space will automatically add value to your home. The added bonus of more space is a huge attraction to homebuyers, meaning you can enjoy the short-term benefits knowing the long-term also pays off.
Our hard-wearing, New Zealand Steel manufactured sheds provide complete protection against the elements. That means your vehicles or more expensive items won’t be ruined by moisture exposure and rust.
Build the right kind of shed and you’ll have a versatile and adaptable space that can change and grow with your lifestyle and situation. What might be a place for extra storage now may well be an art studio in five years time.
Everyone needs storage. A shed is the perfect solution for packing away Christmas decorations, toys, tools and more. Freeing up room in your living space and giving you a lockable area that can even serve to childproof your home.
We all need time to ourselves away from the hustle and bustle of family life. A shed makes room for hobbies, old and new. A workspace without distraction that allows you to work more efficiently or in a more creative way – opening the door to a whole new world of opportunities.
And these are just some of the reasons! With KiwiSpan, there are many styles of sheds to choose from, each easily adapted with our innovative 3D Shed Designer tool. You can create a model of the building you want, take walls out, add lean-tos, or rollers doors and more.
To start planning your shed contact your local KiwiSpan licensee today.