If you are looking to have your new shed project managed from start to finish, your job is relatively simple; however, it is also important to understand the stages that go into the process and who is involved in delivering your finished product.
You can partner with a local builder, or we can put you in contact with one of our trusted and certified partners – specialists in their field.
Below, we walk you through everything you need to know about the process of your new shed build and what you can expect to happen at each stage.
1. Seek Consultation
More than likely you have a particular shed design in mind or at least a problem that a shed can solve. An expert in shed design can point you in the right direction.
We will listen to your requirements, make suggestions and get you thinking about specific designs. This part of the process is about helping you gain an informed and clear picture of what you want.
During the consultation stage, we will endeavour to gain a deep understanding of what you want and let you know what is available out there.
When in the initial concept stage, some things you will need to consider include:
- What will you use it for?
- The dimensions of any machinery or amount of produce you wish to store in your shed.
- What size shed do you need?
- Do you have a specific cladding type in mind?
- What doors or openings do you need to access the building?
- Will you want any insulation and other options in your shed? Check out our range of custom extras here.
- Are there any existing buildings that you like the look of? You can view our gallery of past projects for inspiration.
We can step you through all considerations in person or over the phone. By the end of it you will have a clear idea of what you want.
If you have any questions or need help understanding terminology, we will happily provide answers and recommendations based on your requirements.
Request A Free Design Consultation
Contact us today to recieve an initial quote, a free concept design of your shed, and possible inclusions and exclusion based on your needs.
2. Concept Designing and Planning
This is an exciting stage where everything we explored in our consultation session will be taken into consideration as our design engineers develop the initial concept design of your shed.
Once design concepts have been developed, we will present the drawings along with an initial budget estimate that details the shed fabrication, inclusions or exclusions highlighted by you during the consultation stage and delivery to your site.
This would be the ideal time for you to find your preferred builder or we can connect you to one of our accredited partners. Getting your builder involved at this stage is important to ensure that the whole process goes smoothly. You can also source indicative costs for your builder to manage the project for you so you have an understanding of your overall project cost.
3. Site Survey and Geotech
This is an important stage that will determine the condition of your building site and identify any final design and construction details of the building.
During this stage your builder will need to consider:
- The slope of the site
- The type of soil. Is it rocky? Sandy? Black dirt or red dirt?
- Will the building fit on the block?
- Are there any local building restrictions?
- What is the boundary easement on the property?
- What is the council zoning? Can you actually build what you want on the block?
You will need to arrange a site survey but you will also need to complete a Geotech report. This investigation will include a site analysis of the soil, rocks, bedrock properties and fault distribution to determine the engineering properties of how the elements and constitutes will interact with your proposed construction.
While a formal test is not necessary for an engineers certificate, it is a recommended step at this point in your project so we can factor any outcomes into our detailed design and planning stage, such as; how deep the foundations should be and if long piers are needed.
To arrange this, you can work with your builder. If you have not yet contracted your builder you can contact your local geo-technician. If need be, we have a list of trusted professionals that can help you with this.
Like to get an idea of what your shed might look like?
Click the button adjacent to try our 3D shed design tool.
4. Detailed Design & Planning
Do you like your concept design? Are you happy with the budget estimate? Have you completed your research and determined you can build on your block? Perfect, it’s time to get some elevations and planning and nail down your final quotation.
In this stage, we go through the full design of the building with a fine-toothed comb and work out the exact requirements, measurements, and specifications needed. Everything from height and colour to the amount of bays and door locations will be covered.
This is an excellent opportunity to look at options such as insulation, ventilation, internal fit outs and mezzanine floors and how they can fit into your design.
We will go through the design with you and your builder and make sure everything is how you want it. You can choose to do it over the phone, in person, or via email. We can walk you through the whole process.
By the end of this stage, we will have nailed down the exact design of your shed. We will include the final quotation and what it covers.
5. Council Development Approval (D.A) and Building Permits
Every council has its regulations and restrictions regarding building design and development and can be a time consuming process. Ultimately you would have engaged your builder by this stage and they can support you in this stage.
The council approval step will go through various stages include design approvals and checking whether your finished development complies with the regulations. This can be completed by the council planning staff or alternatively you can engage a private building certifier.
Be prepared: This stage can often involve a lot of back and forth. You can expect the occasional headache when dealing with a council.
We have relationships with a range of helpful consultants that can help you and your builder with the preparation of council documentation. We are always ready to help out with any advice. If council needs extra details and documentation, we will be more than happy to assist.
Quick disclaimer: Some buildings are exempt. Make sure you check with your builder and local council.
6. Engineering Certification
If you are happy with your budget estimate and design, your shed design will then be sent to our independent third party engineer for certification. This is done once you have paid the deposit.
The engineer will evaluate your design and the future site of the shed. They will take into consideration:
- Wind Ratings
- Terrain Categories
- Snow Loadings
- Any Soil Tests
- Importance Ratings (what the building will be used for). For example, if it is a commercial workshop or shopping centre, it will have different requirements than a farm shed on a remote rural property.
During this stage, the engineer will give further feedback and recommendations. We will make the appropriate changes in our drawings before sending back for further evaluation.
Once the engineer is happy with the design, they will issue a Design Certificate or Form 15.
These plans and certificate can then be submitted as part of the Building application
7. Construction Certificate and Building Approval
Whilst the requirements and process can vary between states and territories, there are typically two stages of approval required in order to commence your shed project.
The first stage is your development approval (D.A) which we cover off in point 5. Once you have your council development approval, you will need to apply for a construction certificate in order to commence construction of your shed.
A D.A is a formal application made to Local Council, to seek the granting of consent for the development. The approval and prescribed conditions set out by Council are based on the scale of the project, and each D.A consent is based on its own merit and will have its own unique set of requirements.
During assessment, Council will determine if the proposal meets the relevant zoning and planning controls for the local area; as well as its potential impacts to the surrounding environment and the amenity of neighbouring properties.
Following endorsement from Council, approval documentation including a ‘Notice of Determination’ (N.O.D) and set of stamped ‘approved’ plans will be issued. The N.O.D will outline conditions specific to the development site (e.g. the requirement for a Geotechnical Report due to poor foundation conditions), along with standard conditions relevant to all sites (e.g. compliance to the Building Code of Australia requirements).
While receiving the development consent is worth celebrating, it does not mean that building work can actually start immediately; before construction:
- A Principal Certifying Authority (P.C.A) is to be appointed to monitor construction, and
- A Construction Certificate (C.C) needs to be issued by the accredited certifier.
The C.C includes the detailed building plans and engineering details and specifications. The plans will need to contain a lot more information than the approved D.A plans, to allow the builder to work directly from them; therefore the construction drawings will need to be updated to detailed construction plans (see following point 8), and the building must be consistent with them and the development consent.
To save some time in the process, your builder may consider doing the D.A and C.C process at the same time, commonly called a joint D.A or C.D.C.
7. Procurement and Working Drawings
Once you have received council approval, we start the process of converting your drawings into a shed kit. This stage involves pre-fabrication administration such as ordering materials and parts needed for the construction of your shed kit.
This is an internal job we do and usually takes 2-3 weeks before we can start manufacturing your building.
8. Fabrication Of Your Shed
Once the required materials for your shed have arrived, we start manufacturing and arranging the parts that make up your custom shed kit.
These parts will include:
- Structural Members
- and much more.
Your shed will be painted and put together, ready to go with the shed drawings, after everything is manufactured.
This process does take time and can vary depending on the size and design of your shed. Don’t worry, we will give you a lead time based on the work needed.
9. Site Establishment and Preparation
At this stage, your builder will need to arrange to establish your construction site area and prepare the site prior to commencing any site works or construction.
Some of these requirements may include;
- Temporary safety fencing
- Silt fencing/protection
- Site toilets
- Site office
- WHS signage
- Site induction process
Once your site is established and prepared, meeting all D.A and/or regulatory requirements, you can commence with the next stage.
11. Earthworks, Drainage and Services
It is always easier to build a shed on a solid flat block. The area you want the shed will need to be level. Trees and plants will need to be removed, and excess dirt will need to be bulldozed out or piled up to make the site level.
The ground will then need to be adequately compacted. If the site is not compacted correctly, it can later erode, or the footings will need to be considerably deeper.
Your builder may either take care of the earthworks themselves or subcontract this stage.
They will need to:
- Make sure you have five metres of flat ground around the shed site clear of debris or trees. This allows easy access when erecting the shed.
- Consider how you will approach and access the shed. The ground leading up to the shed will need to allow easy access to the site.
- Make sure soil compaction is up to specifications (we will provide details for your builder).
- Ensure the site is correctly retained if it is on a sloping block (we will provide details for your builder).
During this stage your builder will also ensure that all drainage works are completed to spec and that any required services are ran to site and/or connected such as plumbing, electrical, phoneline, etc.
They will need to consult with local authorities and/or utility suppliers to ensure this process is done correctly and to plan. Getting this right at this stage is critical or it could cost you significant time delays and costs to rectify any issues in later construction stages.
12. Footings, Slab and External Pavements/Aprons
Foundations are essential for a strong and long-lasting shed.
The foundation designs will be included in the final drawings based on the site conditions. If you have had a soil test done, the engineer will give a recommended footing pier size based on its findings. If you have not had a soil test done, the engineer will provide footing details based on the average subsoil conditions of your local area.
This can often be a pier (often a round, deep pier) or a pad foot (a square flatter footing).
Your builder will arrange the digging of these foundations and will quite often incorporate this with the previous earthworks stage.
In your kit, we will include the hold-down bolts that will be cast into the foundations. With large sheds, there could be additional reinforcement required depending on the soil conditions and engineers recommendations. If any additional reinforcing is required, we will give you a price. It will be considered a variation to the original quote.
The laying of the slab can often be done in conjunction with the pouring of the piers and the foundation stage. Alternatively, the concrete slab can be done after the shed is installed. Ultimately, it is up to you and your builder to decide what will work best for your project.
You will also need to consider any external pavements (often referred to as aprons) you will need to allow access to and from your shed, as well as how these will meet site requirements such as drainage, pits, services, etc.
When designing the slab or external pavements, you builder will consider what will be on top of it and what will it be used for. The higher the load, the thicker the slab will need to be.
We can also take this into consideration, design the slab, layout the plan and specify the slabs engineering in the earlier design stages. However, we don’t get involved in the pouring of the foundations, slab or aprons. You will need to arrange this with your builder.
13. Shed Kit Delivery
Once the shed kit has been manufactured, it is ready for delivery.
The delivery of your shed is included in our quote, however, it doesn’t include unloading. We can arrange a crane for unloading, however, many people have their own equipment to unload, which is why it is separated.
If you are happy for us to organise delivery, we can tee up a delivery time. You will need to make sure you are there to meet the truck and have a machine to unload the trailer.
To make delivery as smooth as possible, you will need to:
- Make sure there is side access for a machine to access the truck.
- Ensure the ground is not soft or washed out due to heavy rain.
- Have someone there to unload your shed when the truck arrives.
- Have adequate lay-down area to store the shed materials.
- Be available to answer your phone on the day just in case the delivery driver needs directions to your site.
- Check your machine can lift the load off the truck. If you plan to use your own machinery to unload, check that it can lift at least 1 tonne. Notify us of your machines lift capacity and we will let you know if it is capable of unloading the truck.
14. Shed Installation
As mentioned in previous, we recommend that your builder is included from earlier project stages to ensure that they are across the final design, site specifics, approvals criteria, etc. This will ensure that the shed installation goes as smoothly as possible.
At this stage, your builder will do the following:
- Mark out the site.
- Cast the hold down bolts into the piers – commonly included in the concreting stage.
- Stand the structure.
- Clad the shed.
Install everything we supply including mezzanine floors, roller doors, crane rails, insulation, windows and more.
15. Internal Fitout
The internal fit-out of your new shed includes services such as plumbing and electrical.
Any offices, toilets, washing blocks, change rooms, lunchrooms or other internal fit outs will all include a lot of extras that will need to be done to code by your chosen builder.
In the initial planning stage, your builder can work with you and us to determine what will be involved in the internal fit-out.
We can draw the internal fit-out and design in the initial stages; however, it won’t be a detailed design; only a floor layout. Your builder can organise the specifics related to your internal fit out requirements.
Once your shed has been erected, your chosen builder will then arrange the local plumber, tiler, electrician and other trades to come in and fit it out. You can choose to manage this yourself, however, this particular stage requires a lot of work.
Once your internal fit-out is complete, congratulations, your new building is ready to go.