Rise of the ‘shoffice’: Shed offices are the new conservatory with orders booming: What do you need to consider before buying?

20< August

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With millions more of us now working from home, finding your own, comfortable space to work can become increasingly difficult.

There is an innovative solution for those who have adequate garden space – shed offices. They have seen popularity boom over the lockdown period.

While building a conservatory used to be the most convenient way of adding space to your home, ‘shoffices’ are usually much easier and quicker to install – even if they tend to cost a similar amount.

Trend data from Google shows a sharp increase in searches for shed offices over the last three months and some websites are showing many designs as sold out. 

And with some businesses hinting that they’ll be scaling down their own offices, allowing more people to work from home, interest could continue to grow. 

Garden Affairs, a company that offers a large variety of shed offices, is one firm that has seen a huge increase in shed office purchases since lockdown. 

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Jude, a director of Garden Affairs in Trowbridge, said: ‘We have seen a massive surge in interest in shed offices since lockdown now that everyone is working from home. 

‘Our European factories are inundated with requests.

‘Most of the newer requests are for smaller offices as not everyone has huge gardens to put a large shed in.’

Around 90 per cent of Garden Affair’s offices come bespoke with prices varying from £5,000 for smaller models up to £25,000 for the higher tech ranges.

The cheaper, more basic models are usually around 2.4metres by 1.8metres whereas the more expensive installations measure up to 5metres by 3metres. 

The firm operates UK wide and will build the shed offices for you, although there is the option for you to build them yourselves if you want to.   

However, before households consider having an office installed, there are certain things they will need to check first. 

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What to think about before installing a shed office

For those looking to get a shed office, there are a number of things to consider. This includes how big they want their shoffice to be, what materials they would like it to be made of and where it will go.

Before purchasing anything, customers should first find out whether they will need planning permission to build an office on their property.

Nobody will be able to install a shed office on their front garden without permission – however, most people will build it in the back.

Usually, planning permission is not needed if the office is not within two metres of your garden boundary, is two and a half metres high and has a flat roof.

However, it will depend on each property as to whether it is needed and whether it is considered a shed or an extension.