I would have to say that one of the best decisions we made on the farm was to purchase a shed and convert it into our home office. Not only did it give us a great place to work and still enjoy the farm, it more importantly allowed us to keep our work life out of our main living space.
One thing is for sure, I don’t think in a million years we ever realized just how much we would end up loving our little shed office. In fact, it has become one of our favorite spaces on the farm – even though it’s our office!
For those who work from home, it can often be hard to separate work life from home life. On one hand, it is a blessing to wake up and not have to make a long commute. On the other hand, with work so close by, it can often seem like you never leave it.
For us, that last statement could not ring more true. Whether answering emails, writing articles, shooting a video or creating a new recipe in the kitchen, it’s often hard for us to draw a line between work and home.
Because of that, we knew we needed to have our office outside of our home. As we designed the new farm, we decided the best way to accomplish that was to purchase a shed and convert it into exactly what we needed.
Why Converting A Shed Into A Home Office Makes Sense
So why go with a shed as a home office? For starters, it was the fastest and least expensive option. Adding on or converting an existing room in a home can be pricey. It can also take a lot of time. For us, we just didn’t want to give up any space to an office in our home – and, of course, we wanted to separate work life from our home life.
With a shed, we could purchase a ready to go model. No waiting on material delays or for a remodel or contractors to show up. In fact, all we had to do was have a foundation for the office shed to place it on – and we were ready to go!
Even better, as you will see below in the article and video tour, we could select a quality shed that had the look and feel that was perfect for our farm – and have it be far less expensive than building a stand alone office structure from scratch.
From there, we simply completed the office shed by running electricity to it, insulating, and finishing it out with all of the details we wanted in a home office.
How To Convert A Shed Into A Home Office
Creating An Office Space That Works!
Before we get into the build out process, it is important to note an office shed can have all the bells and whistles of a stand alone or home office. Many visitors to the farm are surprised that you can create a fully functional office from a shed.
Our office shed has full electric, wi-fi, vinyl plank floors, air conditioning, and heat. In addition, it sports a TV, small refrigerator and microwave as well. It even has a full sitting area in addition to 2 work stations.
One thing it doesn’t have is plumbing, but not because it couldn’t. We actually have a double bathroom/bathhouse about 20 feet from our office door. For us, it just didn’t make sense to waste money or lose space by running plumbing with a bathroom so close by.
Perhaps our favorite feature in the office is the triple set of slider doors that open out to a small patio sitting area with a view of the barn area below. We love sliding the doors open while working and having the fresh air and farm view.
Now that you know what all you can put in an office shed, here is a look at what it takes to transform a shed into the office space of your dreams!
Start With A Strong Shed! How To Convert A Shed Into A Home Office
We started with a 24′ x 12′ shed model we purchased from Weaver Barns. The shed was completely finished on the exterior but unfinished on the interior. No matter where you purchase a shed, if you are considering converting it, it’s important to have a quality shell and frame.
For us, that means 2×4 construction, a strong floor, good venting, and quality doors and windows. The 2×4 construction is critical. Not only because it provides excellent strength, but it also allows you to use standard insulation.
Unfortunately, so many sheds on the market are created with 1×2’s or 1×3’s. They also use weaker materials such as pressboard in place of plywood. These cheaper sheds simply won’t hold up over time. They also are hard to heat and cool.
This is one time when spending a little more for a quality building is the best choice. Especially when you compare creating an office from a shed to the cost of remodeling your home or building a stand alone structure.
We love Weaver sheds and buildings because they are strong, beautiful, and built to last. Even more, we can select options such as the metal roof, gutters, and siding upgrades. All of which create a great look along with a low-maintenance exterior. Even better, depending on the size of the shed, it can be built on site, or delivered ready to go.
One thing is for sure, wherever you live, find a shed that is built to last and built with quality materials. There is nothing worse than finishing it out only to have it fall apart in a few years.
Electrical – How To Convert A Shed Into A Home Office
Wiring the cabin for electricity was fairly easy and straightforward. We ran electricity from our main box underground to the cabin. Inside, we placed a 60 amp breaker box that was more than enough to handle the outlets, lights, and fan.
To handle the power surge of the small electric fireplace and stand alone air conditioner, we set one outlet for 20 amps. It’s just an easy way to keep from tripping breakers and keeping everything safe.
The great thing about wiring a shed is how easy it is to do with all of the studs and rafters exposed. It doesn’t take long or a large amount of material to have it wired and ready to go.
Insulating – How To Convert A Shed Into A Home Office
If there is one task that can make a difference, it’s insulation! It helps hold the heat in during the winter and keeps it cooler in the summer. Even better, it provides serious sound insulation as well, which is great for an office.
To insulate the ceiling, we installed baffles to help with air flow. We then ran furring strips along the rafters to hold the rolls up while we stapled them in. The furring strips also make putting up our metal ceiling panels a snap.
Ceiling, Walls & Floors – How To Convert A Shed Into A Home Office
Once the wiring and insulation were up, it was time to finish the ceiling, walls, and floors. We opted not to use drywall for a couple of reasons. For starters, we love the look of metal and wood. In addition, although the building can be heated and cooled, we often turn the power off if we will be gone.
Drywall does not hold up well to extreme cold. It often cracks at the seams. Instead, we used galvanized metal panels for the ceiling. We also used the metal panels for wainscoting for the bottom 1/3rd of the walls.
To finish the walls, we used shiplap to complete the look. Shiplap is cost effective, easy to install – and it looks great with the farm setting or anywhere for that matter. You can also hang anything from it without the worry of putting drywall anchors in it! See : How To Install Shiplap With Ease
To complete the interior, we used vinyl plank flooring. Not only is it great for rolling office chairs, it is also durable. Wood flooring would most likely warp, especially if the heat were not on in the winter. The vinyl plank floor is also extremely easy to clean and care for.
As for cost, we spent a little over $2700 for the conversion process, minus the shed of course. For us, it was a huge savings over trying to build a stand alone office or convert a space in the home
Office Shed Video Walk Through Link
Here is to creating your own office from a shed! Happy Living – Jim and Mary.
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