The standard shed takes a modern twist by creating a structure that adds square footage to a homeowner’s property for a guest bedroom, artist studio, workout space, home office or man cave.
More than a simple storage unit for lawn and garden items, a thoroughly modern milled out-building is in for people who want to add livable square footage to their residential property, says Tim Vack, general manager of Modern-Shed Inc., based in Seattle since 2005.
“Our Modern-Shed isn’t just a shed, it’s a shell which can stylishly house additional living space,” he says of the company with ten sales representatives across North America. “Based on mid-century architecture, the elegance of the Modern-Shed is the simplicity of a structure with a single-angled roof and windows near the top.”
A Modern-Shed is used less as a gardening shed and more as part of a stylish backyard garden getaway, as the company claims to be the first to customize and produce mid-century style outbuildings that are International Building Code compliant. Capitalizing on this modern movement, even Tuff Shed, a company known for its barnlike and traditional-style sheds, offers a contemporary Premier Pro Studio shed, which can be purchased nationwide.
If a homeowner wants to shed the conventional for a contemporary outbuilding, there are many things to do before breaking ground. Vack says involving family members in the discussion of a Modern-Shed’s usage helps to make it a little extension of the big house.
“Life is so stressful, and having a place to escape into the backyard is like having that tree house when we were kids,” he says. “But if the site isn’t prepared properly, a Modern-Shed can be anything but fun and games.”
The location for a studio-style shed should be a relatively dry spot, on slightly elevated ground, where rainwater won’t collect. Often, homeowners build their Modern-Shed over a solid or crushed rock surface, poured concrete pad or wooden decking, but the structure should be built at least 12 to 18 inches off the ground, according to Vack. “The site needs to be prepared and graded to handle the drainage after water flows off the roof,” he says. “Also, site accommodations must be made if the Modern-Shed is going to have electricity and plumbing.”
But before buying and breaking ground on the bitty building, Vack says homeowners need to check with local accessory building codes within their municipality and/or homeowner’s association. “Modern-Shed provides the ready-to-assemble customized and prefabricated building components, and after construction, the structure can weigh up to 5,000 pounds,” Vack says. “But it’s up to the homeowners to secure the permits.”
Modern-Sheds come in a variety of sizes, but the most popular is a 10-by-12-foot structure, totaling 120 square feet. The Modern-Shed can be customized using a variety of materials and woods, with insulated walls that hold professionally manufactured windows and doors. Vack says the cost of a Modern-Shed can start out at $100 per square foot and top off around $250 per square foot. The average cost, however, is just over $150 per square foot, he says.
A Modern-Shed space can be used for both work and play:
▪ A home office, the most popular usage, is a space that is both productive and professional, including easy commutes to and from the backyard.
▪ An art studio for the artist-in-residence is a creative space flooded with natural light from windows near the roofline.
▪ A home gym allows families to stay in and work out, then cool off outside.
▪ A hobby or craft room provides puts an end to canvassing your home for art supplies while longing for a permanent place to sew, scrapbook or creatively sprawl out.
▪ A man cave or game room allows families to bring their A-game home and socially engage by watching the big game on television in a penalty-free zone.
▪ A teen hangout allows your home to be a drama-free scene by creating a special space for the young adults in your life.
▪ A guest suite is sweet for visiting friends and family, with enough space and privacy to accommodate loved ones.
Building a backyard space sheds light on the charms of creating an additional private residential room without remodeling the existing home. “Building a Modern-Shed isn’t just about putting up a building,” Vack says. “It’s about a lifestyle, as homeowners also landscape around this new multipurpose room for a finishing and fragrant touch.”
▪ Shed Ready: www.modern-shed.com or 800-261-7282.