Preparing to Receive a Storage Building

Before you receive a storage building there are a few steps that you will have to take in order to prepare the site. These steps are probably more important than the actual receiving and erection of the storage building because the erection of the building and the overall condition of the building through the years depends very much on the preparation before receiving the building

Picking a Storage Building Site

The first item of preparation is to choose the site where the building will be built. The most important item to keep a mind is to choose a site that allows for proper drainage away from the building. Ideally this would mean placing the building on top of a hill higher than any of the surrounding area. If this is not possible on the site than the best approach would be to study the topography of the property and to avoid locating the shed into any "flowlines" that would divert water toward the building.

The more dirtwork that is required means that the preparation of the site will cost a lot more money but if there is not a naturally suitable site for the building then the next best thing would be to build a good site. This includes either removing soil from one section of the property and placing it on another area where the building would be located or to just import soil and place it to build up the building site.

Choosing Utilities for the Building

After a site is chosen or built for the building then the next step is to bring in any utilities that are desired for the building.

Is electricity/lighting desired for the building? If so then you need to decide if you are pulling the electrical service from another source such as your house or another building on service or if there is another option available such as solar-powered lights (some are sold in a package with a shed) or a generator to power the building.

If plumbing is desired then arrangements will have to be made such as a water source and a way to dispose the water. Water will have to be brought in via a well or another source such as city or county water. Wastewater can be tied to either a city or county sanitary sewer system or it can be tied to a septic system.

Please keep in mind that any utilities hooked up to the new storage building are subject to approval by your local "authority having jurisdiction". If you are within city boundaries this typically means the city you are located in. If you are not located within any city limits then typically your county or even your state will be in charge of approving arrangements for electrical or water hook ups for your new building. There are vERY FEW locations in the country that you can install any electrical or water supply without having to obtain a permit and having the work inspected.

Storage Building Foundation

The construction of a foundation is one of the last steps before a building can be erected. There are many types of foundations available for the building. Please keep in mind that this description is based on some assumptions and may not necessarily be per the codes in your local area. Please double check your local building codes to confirm if you are in compliance before beginning any of this work. If your building is less than 2,000 SF then you can use a "typical" detail for your foundation without having to hire an engineer. This design includes a 3' (or deeper depending on the frost level in your specific area) concrete footer around the perimeter of the building. This foundation must include the proper rebar reinforcement and thickened footer pads as required by the building manufacturer at each point of connection between the footer and the building. If you haven't selected a building yet you will need to select the building before the foundation is placed and poured or you will run the risk of the foundation not meeting the requirements set forth by the building manufacturer.

If the building is larger than 2000 SF or if your local building codes require it, you may have to hire a professional structural engineer to design the foundation and a contractor to place the foundation. This will most likely entail a custom foundation suited to typical soil conditions in your area or it will require a soil report specific to your site conditions followed by a custom designed foundation.


The final consideration you will have to make is what type of flooring you want for your storage building. Many have a soil or gravel floor but others require additional flooring depending on what is being stored within the building. The most common type of floor is a poured-in-place concrete "Slab-on-grade" and then whatever type of flooring you would like installed on top of the concrete slab-on-grade.

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