0 Building a Sustainable Shed

Just pretend it is finished. I know I am. #honeydolist

I approach projects around the house differently than I did years ago. My first stop is never a store that sells new products. I am always looking for gently used products or ways to upcycle things we already have. When it came time to build a backyard shed we went to the Habitat for Humanity Re-Store first. You may not find everything you are looking for but it is a great first stop when you are trying to build a shed sustainably.

5 Tips for Building a Sustainable Shed

Bigger isn't always better
Build a shed that fits your needs. A huge shed may seem like a good idea but it is going to require more materials to build and the more materials you need the bigger the footprint of your shed.

Buy from a store with a great return policy
You want to be able to return any materials you do not use. If the store won't take unused product back or if you opened the packaging then you can sell them on Craigslist, Kijiji or give them away for free to Habitat for Humanity or on Freecycle.

Harness the power of the sun
You won't be using the lights in the shed too often so install solar lights. They are easy to install and run off of a small battery and panel. Attach a timer to the light as well so it will automatically go off after a certain amount of time, just in case you forget to turn it off.

Don't buy new tools
What are the chances you are ever going to build a roof again? Probably slim. So don't go out and buy a roofing nail gun. Ask around to see if someone you know has one you can borrow. I have even heard of neighbourhoods that have a bank of tools that they can all use and borrow from. We borrowed the roofing nail gun we used to build our shed from our neighbour.

Use sustainable products
Shop at 2nd hand stores or from your own home for the materials you need to build the shed. You may be surprised at what you find. It could be something as big as the shingles to something as small as a box of nails. When picking our lumber buy FSC certified wood. It is going to cost you more but from a sustainability perspective it is completely worth it. 

How do you approach building projects? What are your best tips for keeping them green?

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