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Discussion Starter #1
Ok guys the mini farm with the big buildings deal fell thru so I'm looking at two different plans now
First... stay in the subdivision I'm in and build a small garage/shop
Or
Second ... buy a piece of ground build a new house and a shop
I have a lawn mower, gator, and a 2038. I like to do small repairs myself instead of paying for it. Have 3 snowmobiles as well to maintain.
What size isn't the smallest you guys would do?
In the subdivision I do have a buddy I can store the tractor in and the gator if needed so I'm thinking a 18x24 or a 20x30 as I have to be less than a 1000 square feet. My biggest concern is that I spend the money on a building in here and when I do want to sell I'll never be able to get rid of it at the value because it seems most people don't want an outbuilding. If I buy a place and bui.d new I'm thinking of 24x36 with 9 or 10 ft sides
Thoughts? Thanks
 

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For the longest time all I had was a 900sq ft 3-car garage and did everything in there - I had at that time 2 cars, a truck, a jeep and 5 motorcycles - plus my welders and my reloading bench. It was tight, but if you lay things out just so, you can really optimize the space with very little wasted area. The key for me was a L shaped fixed workbench in one corner with several other workbenches on casters (all at my preferred 39" work height) - makes it easy to move things from one work area to another. I also had over 50 linear feet of wall cabinets - mounted fairly high up on the walls (bottoms were at around 5' off the floor) to keep things organized and still have usable wall space to store things on pegboard. It's all about maximum utilization of space.

When I was finally able to afford a shop....well I don't think you can have a shop that is to large.

I sold the place above and I am currently in a large-ish acreage (+/- 1 acre) subdivision with a 1500sq ft shop and 1200sq ft attached garage and now find the land and shop size to confining. This might be because I retired pretty early and have lots of time and energy on my hands and can get into all sorts of trouble! So I bought 3+ acres in the county but on the outskirts of town to build a new home with a 1800 sq ft attached garage plus a 3500sq ft shop.

I do all my own maintenance/repairs/fab on 11 different cars/trucks/motorcycles, plus futzing around on whatever strikes my fancy. My current shop has 12' ceilings and the new one will have a combination of 14' & 16'.

This is my last place I'll probably have. This new place will suit me for the next 30 years. Thats how I look at it to justify the expense.

Around here you better have a shop if you want to sell.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I had to move because of my job,, had a 30x50 full concrete insulated and heated shed plus a30x50 non heated for storage
To a 2 car small car attached garage and a 10x16 lawn mower building.
If I knew it would still resell well I'd build here in the subdivision but scared it won't
 

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What ever you do build right up to max square feet you can. Never enough room in my opinion. I’m batting around building another garage. As far as side walls, depends what your going to do. My current shop I wish I had higher ceiling/sidewalls so I could have a hoist and get my 5th wheel in. My 2 cents.
 

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What ever you do build right up to max square feet you can. Never enough room in my opinion. I’m batting around building another garage. As far as side walls, depends what your going to do. My current shop I wish I had higher ceiling/sidewalls so I could have a hoist and get my 5th wheel in. My 2 cents.
Pretty much ^This!!

The place we bought has a 40x60 shop/barn. Half the floor is concrete, the other half dirt. It might be large enough once I get the real "barn" built.

Id park everything you have in the fashion you want to have it inside, then measure the perimeter. Then think is that big enough to grow a little?
Build the biggest you can afford.
 

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If your max is 1000 sq ft, then you should build a 1000 sq ft shop! :laugh:

In all seriousness, especially in the semi-urban sub division where size is dictated by code, I would build the max allowable.
Also, I would suggest a minimum of 14' sidewalls, 16' if you can. This will allow for taller doors and higher ceiling. Legal height is 13'6", so if you want to put a camper in later you will need the height.
Or like mentioned, if you ever want to add a lift.

I'm looking at a 36x50 as I'm limited to 1800 sq ft. I'll apply for a varience to get 16' sidewalls over the 14' per code to allow for taller doors and the possibility of still putting a loft in it.

Last thing to keep in mind is the almighty $$$. Doesn't do any good to build it if you can't afford it!
 

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I agree with others. If you are going to build on your property, go with the biggest you can by code. If limited by budget. Do a layout that will allow for expansion later. Also you are in IA so put insulation down and PEX for in floor heat before pouring the floor. Even if you don't plan on heating it today, it isn't that much more to do and will add to the value later. Way too expensive to retrofit.

As for size, you will make do with what you have. I know plenty of people that do a lot out of a little space but they have to get more creative and make compromises. If you have more space you don't have all those limits. I have a 1500 sqft shop now and we are talking about adding a 3 car garage to the house.
 

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It is impossible to make many friends when you build a structure on your land. It may be the Taj Mahal of garages to you, but it blocks one neighbor's view, it causes runoff and drainage problems for another, another is forced to constantly look at all your junk because the garage doors are always open, your air compressor is too noisy, and on and on.

Once you come to the conclusion that you'll just have to not care about neighbors, then build what you want.

Start with a floor plan placing all the large tools (table saw, welding table, pedestal grinder, drill press, band saw, bender, planer, and your workbench. Don't overlook also placing things like your shop vac, tool cabinets,and fuel storage. Then consider and try to add any future purchases to the floor plan. Think also about long items you may be working on. Will your maximum length of lumber be 8 feet long, or will you be doing projects with 12 foot lengths? Maybe there is a lust for a lathe in your future; set aside a space in your plans.

If you find 1000 square feet is sufficient, then build that. If it's not, then you'll have to down-size your desires and do without certain equipment. If everything in your dream floor plan is critical for you, yet uses too much square footage for your current site, then you may really want to move elsewhere.

The worse thing, in my opinion, is to try to cram too many floor tools into a shop. You'll be bumping into things, tripping, and risking injury.
 

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I'm going to take a slightly different approach... You mention in your original post that you were looking for some property out in the country. If I was living in the 'burbs and wanted to move to the country, I'd be making finding a property in the country my priority - over building a shop. Regardless of the size, you're never going to get the additional cost of the shop building out of it when you sell the place in the 'burbs. If you're going to "invest in your property", invest in a property that you're going to be at for years and years!

Someone above mentioned the neighbors not wanting to see your junk, not wanting to hear your compressor, etc. Another reason to get out where you've got some space between you and the neighbors. Then build the shop of your dreams (within your budget :gizmo:) and have fun!! You won't regret getting out of an area where neighbors are poking their noses in your business. I've been on 5 acres for seven years now. It will be tough when the time comes to ever go back to living in a neighborhood. Even though I can see my neighbors when the leaves are down, I can't see them during the times of the year that I'm out working on the property.

If you're staying in the 'burbs, double check that allowable shed size. When I lived in the 'burbs, it was 100 sf without a permit, not 1000 sf.
 

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My neighbours borrow my 60 gallon compressor, welder, etc.


Ironically enough, my garage isn't heated. So I go to my neighbours in the winter and make-do with hand tools in his heated garage. :laugh:
 

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Approx 53x25 Ours is 4 bay 2 8 ft wide and 2 10 ft wide 8 ft tall doors.

1FBE7B3F-61F2-424C-AF3F-2ED5B44D8D5C.jpg
F386D4D3-258E-4726-BE79-9D790F38B2DB.jpg F51D7102-BDA9-45CF-9B77-6BC1F85BC19C.jpg
Ok guys the mini farm with the big buildings deal fell thru so I'm looking at two different plans now
First... stay in the subdivision I'm in and build a small garage/shop
Or
Second ... buy a piece of ground build a new house and a shop
I have a lawn mower, gator, and a 2038. I like to do small repairs myself instead of paying for it. Have 3 snowmobiles as well to maintain.
What size isn't the smallest you guys would do?
In the subdivision I do have a buddy I can store the tractor in and the gator if needed so I'm thinking a 18x24 or a 20x30 as I have to be less than a 1000 square feet. My biggest concern is that I spend the money on a building in here and when I do want to sell I'll never be able to get rid of it at the value because it seems most people don't want an outbuilding. If I buy a place and bui.d new I'm thinking of 24x36 with 9 or 10 ft sides
Thoughts? Thanks
 

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Is there any particular reason you went with a shed roof over a gable style?
Yes to better match the house. The rear has 7 ft head room along the back 53 ft that is about 10 ft wide. We have a 10x14 man cave with ac upstairs and the balance is storage also.

01CD7E19-178D-4688-BE38-EB3A94A9728D.jpg 8680F3AE-DE7A-48D9-AE3B-C8E7FA339194.jpg 6E0EABD7-8285-4568-A4CD-4F5ABC9F000B.jpg
 
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