Are you pulling your hair out trying to find extra room to store your things? Does your garage make you look like a hoarder? It might be time to look into building a shed in your own yard. This is a great place to store tools, fertilizers, lawncare equipment, etc. But you probably don’t want to spend thousands of dollars to have someone build it for you, right? This is where having a solid plan for building your own shed comes in. It’s really not that hard to do. Everyday people (non-carpenters) do it all the time. But the one bit of information you’ll need (and use) more than any other is a set of high quality shed plans. And this pretty much translates into paying for shed plans. Sure there’s lots of free shed plans available online. But believe me, you really don’t want to use those. I’ve simply heard too many stories over the years of shed construction disasters which were caused by using bad plans. Remember you get what you pay for. $30 is a small amount to pay to save yourself a ton of hassle while saving thousands on building a new shed. So here’s a rundown of some of the best paid shed plans out there and what you should look for so that your project goes as smoothly as possible.
Good Shed Plans – What Should I Be Looking For?
If you’ve ever tried doing a DIY project blind or by “winging it” you probably know how quickly things can go south. Unless you’re a master woodworker you likely need detailed specs, dimensions, and instructions. That is what these paid shed plans are for. But if you are forking over your cash you are going to want the best bang for your buck. So you should look for the following when considering which shed plan to purchase:
- Shed Design– Any great shed plan will show you a picture of the finished product so you can find the design that is right for you.
- Materials List– It should include a materials list with hardware required AND a cutting list so you know exactly what measurements your wood needs to be.
- 3D Drawings– 2D plans aren’t nearly as useful when building your own shed. You need views from all angles to see how everything fits together and which parts go where.
- Step-By-Step Instructions– If you’re buying one of these shed plans chances are you might not be a woodworking expert. And that’s ok! But that means that you will need plans that include step-by-step instructions on building your shed so that you won’t be confused on what you need to do.
- Exact Proportions/Correct Dimensions– It’s crucial that the materials list includes the correct cuts for wood and shows the exact dimensions of the different features of your shed.
Now that we know what to look for, take a look at 4 of the most popular shed plans and read my thoughts on what you should consider before buying them.
Top Pick: ShedPlans.org
Shedplans.org is our top pick for paid shed plans. They have 30 shed plans of varying sizes and complexity for sale. It ticks all the boxes above with each plan including a materials list, step-by-step instructions, blueprints with exact measurements, and colored drawings showing where everything fits together. Where these plans really shine are sheds requiring something a little extra like decorative lattice, doors, windows, a gutter system, a foundation, specific types of roof or a garage door. There are instructions for any of those extra features in case you want to personalize your shed or make it more convenient. The plans run anywhere from $30-$35 each, which is pretty standard for most paid shed plans. Overall these are high quality plans that are great if you’re really looking to add some extra features to your shed.
Shed Plan Provider #2: 3DShedPlans.com
Like the name implies, 3DShedPlans offers 39 shed plans with 3D drawings, material lists, and detailed instructions. The variety of these shed plans is pretty standard, although they may not have particularly complex shed design plans. They are also possibly the best premium shed plans for beginners, as they have incredibly detailed instructions for all aspects of the build along with pro-tips in each section. They are also really convenient as upon purchase they email you a pdf that can be printed or used on any mobile/PC/MAC/tablet device. The price is $30 per plan, which is standard and a good deal for the value you’re getting.
Plan Provider #3: RyanShedPlans.com
RyanShedPlans seems to offer the best deal at first glance. For a one-time payment of $37 you get 12,000 different plans. Unfortunately, many buyers have noted that the plans can vary in quality quite a bit. According to many other online reviews, there are around 40-50 high quality plans with 3D CAD drawings, exact measurements, material lists, everything you need. Other plans seem to be taken from a variety of universities and online sources, and some only include some basic 2D drawings that can be illegible. All that being said, there are some benefits that make RyanShedPlans worth considering. If you follow the link above there are a couple of neat bonuses offered. These include advanced woodworking tips, a directory of DIY suppliers, a guide to modifying any plan to personal taste, and 400 extra woodworking projects unrelated to sheds. Lastly, there is a 60-day money back guarantee, so if you don’t like what you get you can always get your money back which is a nice fallback.
Plan Provider #4: ICreatables.com
ICreatables.com is another solid option when picking paid shed plans. They offer the largest variety of shed plans with plans for hundreds of shed styles and sizes. Each purchased plan comes with a “How to Build a Shed” eBook along with step-by-step instructions and material lists for your specific shed design. They are also the only provider of these 4 that varies price based on complexity, so a simpler, smaller shed only costs around $15 while the more complex designs can be around $35 (other providers charge $30-$35 no matter the complexity). The one downside to these plans is a lot of them only feature 2D drawings instead of 3D ones, so it could be a bit harder to tell how everything fits together. That being said it’s hard to beat their variety and value, so they are a great bet (especially if you are looking to build simpler sheds as they are cheaper than other plan providers).
Hopefully we’ve given you enough to think about when looking to buy a premium shed plan for your project. We hope that you can find the perfect plan to make the shed building process less of a hassle while still allowing you to build the shed of your dreams.