Author: Andrea A


Shed homes started trending in 2022 and have recently spiked due to high interest rates and inflated real estate prices! Before you purchase any old shed and attempt to make it into a tiny home, you need to consider these important facts! 
  1. Local Building Codes: It is essential to adhere to local building codes. Ignoring these regulations can have serious repercussions. For example, not following local occupancy laws may lead to heavy fines from the authorities. In addition, certain safety requirements must be met in order for a tiny house to be considered habitable and meet insurance standards. If these are disregarded, you could risk serious injury or even death in the event of a natural disaster. Finally, some areas may require additional features such as insulation or fire protection that could pose health risks if they are neglected. All in all, ignoring local building codes when constructing a tiny house should be avoided at all costs to ensure the safety of those living there. Instead call your local building code department to ask about regulations. 
  2. Insulation and Ventilation: One frequent call we get at Mountain Barn Builders is related to improper use of storage sheds without proper ventilation or insulation.  Any area of the house that is insulated and has the potential to collect moisture (i.e. bathrooms, kitchens, anywhere with HVAC) need to be properly ventilated to prevent water damage and mold. While it may seem like you are saving money by buying a shed and finishing it out yourself, if you are not a licensed contractor or are not familiar with residential building you may end up spending even MORE money! 
  3. Electrical Safety: You may be an expert YouTube watcher and great at learning new trades, however, no amount of savings is worth your health and safety! There are rules and regulations surrounding electricity for reasons! Installed improperly can result in fire hazards and potentially the death of you and your loved ones. So please get a licensed electrician to inspect your work or install the electric for you. 
  4. Overall Costs: You can expect to spend anywhere from $40,000 to $100,000 on your shed home depending on the size, design, quality, and timeline. While this is still cheaper than traditional housing, it is very important to budget correctly so you can save up enough to finish your project. 
You may be wandering, what is the difference between a regular shed and a residential shed... This can change based on local building codes. However, here is a short comprehensive list for you to start! 
  1. Tyvek House Wrap: "DuPont™ Tyvek® HomeWrap® is the original house wrap, incorporating unique material science that helps keep air and water out, while letting water vapor escape. As a result, it can contribute to improved building durability by helping to protect homes against damaging wind and rain that can penetrate the exterior cladding. Tyvek® HomeWrap® can also reduce home energy bills by controlling air flow and water intrusion, which helps insulation work better, allowing the HVAC system to work more efficiently. It’s a house wrap engineered to keep homes cool in the summer, warm in the winter, and dry all year round." According to
  2. Hurricane Straps: "Hurricane ties are also called hurricane clips and hurricane straps. They are metal connectors with holes for fasteners, such as nails or screws. Roofers use hurricane ties to reinforce the connection between the roof truss and the wall plate. Typically, hurricane ties are stainless steel or galvanized steel, as both are strong and will not rust." According to
  3. 16" on Center Wall Studs: To support the structure, wall studs must be a maximum 16" on center. Some sheds can span up to 24" or even 48" depending on the builder!   
  4. Minimum 2x6 Rafters: Residential codes require a minimum of R-19 insulation in the roof. To make room for this, all rafters need to be. minimum of 2"x6". Some local codes may require a higher R value insulation or larger rafters. 
  5. Felt Paper and Vapor Barriers: These barriers will help prevent moisture from building up on the inside of your unit. However, THESE are not a substitute for proper ventilation! 

We love shed homes and tiny houses! We also love our customers and want to make sure you are well informed before you purchase a shed and start your tiny home journey. For more information on these please call 931-863-8030!  

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