8 Inspiring Outbuildings to Upgrade Your Garden

Be inspired by this selection of ideas, from characterful oak garages through to vamped up garden sheds for home offices
Articles by Build It magazine
by Build It
1st July 2020

For most, creating a beautiful garden is a surefire way to improve your lifestyle and enjoy your home to its maximum potential.

You can spruce up your space by planting flowers or digging ponds, however an expert study conducted by Sellhousefast.uk found that the best way to add value to a garden is by erecting an outbuilding or shed.

Here we list some inspiring outbuilding ideas, so you can add value to your home whilst enjoying your garden to its full potential.

1. Oak frame pavilion

A unique oak frame pavilion design and build such as this from Oakwrights provides the perfect setting to relax in or entertain friends and family, whatever the weather.

2. Bespoke pool house

A pool room from Redwood Stone Folly & Garden is the height of home luxury. This bespoke Gothic stone design brings a striking and heritage-style statement to this garden.


3. Statement shed

Turn your shed into an extra living space by injecting some design flair. This shed has benefited from a fresh lick of paint from the Cuprinol Garden Shades range, which is suitable for wood, terracotta, brick and stone – great for fences, too.

Blue garden shed


4. Traditional double bay garage

A garage is a must-have for many homeowners and oak buildings offer a traditional, characterful aesthetic. This charming design features a double bay garage and covered log store.

Large oak outbuilding

5. Contemporary pergola

Able to close up or be open to the garden, this versatile aluminium pergola has automatic windproof sun screens and glass sliding doors. The design can be freestanding or fitted to existing walls.

Alumium extension


6. Garden pods

Rotating cylindrical garden pods are a popular design, offering a futuristic look and stylish place to enjoy the outdoors from. This lounger can seat up to seven people.

Circular oak structure


7. Garden office

Designed by architects Surman Weston, this home workspace is lined with birch plywood inside, while outside an innovative cork cladding creates a thermally and acoustically efficient external barrier 

home office in Timber outbuilding

Credit: Wai Ming Ng

8. Shepherd hut accomodation

Shepherd Huts are popular additions to offer guests a rustic stay. This design by Blackdown Shepherd Huts features horizontal timber cladding and pale green fenestration

Shepherd's hut

Credit: Ben Carpenter

Outbuildings planning permission

  • Outbuildings tend to come under permitted development (PD) rights, but if these don’t apply to you (for instance, if your plans exceed the size limits, your house is positioned in a conservation area, or you own a listed building) then you’ll need specific planning consent.
  • The intended use of the building is crucial when it comes to permission to build, so make sure you define how you intend to use the zone properly.
  • You can’t cover more than 50% of the property’s original garden with buildings; the structure must be single storey, have a maximum eaves height of 2.5m and overall height of 3m. Verandas, balconies and raised platforms don’t fall under PD.
  • Always check whether permitted development applies, or whether you need full planning, before going ahead with an outbuilding project.

permitted development rights

Main image: Swimming Pool and Pool House

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