Preparation Checklist

Considerations and Preparation Checklist for a Typical Shed Installation.

Where to position your shed.

  • As with any type of real estate/property, it's all about location when it comes to  choosing where to site your shed.
  • The most important thing is to select a location where you can create a base that is square and level.
  • If the area you need to use is sloped, it is likely that you will have to build up a support on the downhill side of the site or do a cut and fill to create a level area. How you do this depends on the material you choose, which could include cement, cinderblock, p-gravel, timber or other materials.
  • Make sure that the entrance area into your shed will allow the door to open freely and fully at an accessible height.
  • It is always good to choose an area with good drainage and slightly elevated if possible.
  • Make sure you choose a location that allows enough working space for moving parts into place and fastening panel screws from the outside during assembly.
  • It is important to check local community bylaws or with landlords for guidelines or approvals in your area.


  • How much storage area or workspace is required? Take inventory of items you intend to store, as well as assess the available area in which you intend to erect the shed to make sure you have enough space. Then choose a model that suits your needs.
  • Will you be storing items that require a wide opening, such as a riding mower? Choosing the correct-size door opening minimizes the possibility of damage to the shed or stored items when moving things in and out.
  • Will you be storing tall items, such as ladders? Will you be spending a lot of time inside the shed; if so, make sure to select a shed with sufficient height and space.

Your Style

  • Style/roof design: What appeals most to you: gable (peaked), gambrel (barn-style), mansard or sloped, vinyl, metal, resin, wood?
  • Color: Do you want to match the color of your home or to blend in with landscape?
  • Finish: There are various shed material types available. You can select from electro-galvanized steel (standard models) vinyl-coated, electro-galvanized steel (premium models) complete vinyl sheds ( maintenance free, premium models) resin/plastic sheds ( maintenance free) or traditional wooden sheds.

Prep Work and Assembly

  • Base: Choose your shed base. A square and level base is essential for a square and level shed. To prevent moisture absorption it is recommended to place a continuous, unbroken plastic vapour barrier/plastic sheeting between the ground and the building's base.
  • Floor: Consider installing a floor kit if dirt or grass will serve as your base – this will keep items better protected and off the ground. Using a manufactures foundation base kit or floor kit can help you create a square and level base. It is recommended to use exterior grade plywood on top of metal floor kit.
  • Assistance: Have a minimum of two people ready to work together – at least one to position parts or panels, and one to handle fasteners and tools.
  • Time: Make sure you have a continuous stretch of time to dedicate to assembly, possibly a whole weekend. Estimates for the time required to assemble your shed after the completion of your selected base are provided on each product page. Time will vary depending on your skill level, number of people participating in the "shed raising" and whether you are using power or hand tools.
  • Basic Tools required include No. 2 Phillips screwdriver, pliers, work gloves, safety glasses, utility knife or scissors, carpenter's level, tape measure and stepladder. Using a magnetic-tipped cordless screwdriver could speed up assembly time by 40%. If you use one, you may want to have an extra battery available.
  • Weather: Assemble your shed on a calm, dry day. Do not assemble on a windy or wet day.
  • Instructions: Before beginning to assemble, read the complete instruction manual, regardless of your skill level. Also refer to assembly videos on the internet for your model of shed. These can be very insightful.
  • Anchoring: Your shed must be permanently anchored to the ground for safety when fully assembled. Choose the appropriate anchoring kit for your base as part of the preparation phase of shed construction. Most manufactures offers anchoring options. If you need to leave your building before it is completely assembled, you will need to temporarily anchor the corners of the shed to your base, and place weights, such as patio blocks or sandbags, on top of the floor frame.
  • If you're in an area where there is heavy snow accumulation, you'll possibly want to give your shed additional support with the roof strengthening kit available from Arrow Sheds and Duramax Sheds.