How Much Does It Cost to Build a Studio Shed?
Workplace Inspiration

How Much Does It Cost to Build a Studio Shed?

Autonomous|Aug 26, 2022

If you've ever wanted to build a studio shed but don't know where to start, you must consider all the aspects that may affect the cost of assembling your studio shed. Owning a shed can have several fantastic benefits, especially if you lack space to store your stuff at your home. 

In most cases, building a studio shed can go anywhere from $200 to $30,000, which is why we created the following guide that explains everything that needs to be considered when building a shed and how to lower the price as much as possible. 

Keep reading to learn more about building a studio shed and how the Autonomous ADUs series may be your best option. 

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Factors Involved in Calculating the Cost of a Studio Shed

On average, it will cost you around $2,500 to build a shed in America. However, this is determined by several factors that will make the price fluctuate. 


Size of studio shed

It is common sense that larger studio sheds will cost more than small ones. In order to determine the price of your backyard studio shed based on its size, you must consider both its floor space and height, as this will allow you to calculate how many materials you will need to finish the structure. 


Another crucial element you must remember is the materials you will use in your backyard studio shed, as some will be more expensive than others. If you want a simple vinyl shed, you can do it for only $200, but sturdier metal sheds can go as high as $7,000. 

Other common materials are wood and stone, which cost up to $15,000 and $30,000, respectively.


studio shed Style

You must also know how the backyard studio shed's style can affect the final cost. Usually, typical garden sheds can go up to $1,000, but storage sheds can cost up to $15,000, and open-stall sheds up to $10,000. However, these costs will also depend on the shed's material and size. 

Labor and Permits

Sometimes, your contractors will need certain permits to build a backyard studio shed on your property, which usually costs around $100. This will vary depending on your location, as well as the cost of labor. Still, most contractors charge approximately $50 and $100 per hour.

Additional Costs and Considerations

Although the previously described aspects are the most crucial, several others can also affect the price of building a prefab studio shed on your property. Take a look at the following list to learn more about them. 

Land Clearing and Excavation

Land Clearing and Excavation

One of the most crucial aspects that must be considered to ensure a shed is functional and stable is that it perfectly sits on ground level. Therefore, if anything is obstructing the area where the prefab studio shed will be located, the contractors will need to clear it up and level it, which can cost up to $4,400. 

Foundation Building

Another crucial thing to know about sheds is that although not all require concrete foundations, most will. In some cases, this will be a municipal requirement, which is why it is crucial to learn all laws and regulations about prefab studio sheds before starting to build one. Building a foundation for these sheds can go anywhere from $4,000 to $12,300. 

Electricity and Plumbing

Electricity and Plumbing

This aspect will depend on the type of prefab studio shed you'll build. If you're making one to create a home office setup, the chances are that you will need wired electricity to plug in several office appliances and lights. A licensed electrician must do this if you want it to be done correctly, which can cost you up to $2,200. 


It isn't expected for sheds to need insulation, but if you're going to be making a living inside of them, you will need to get them insulated. However, this isn't too costly, as sheds tend to be small. You can get away with only paying around $200 for this. 

Prefab vs. Original Construction

Prefab vs. Original Construction

You don't always need to build a outdoor studio shed from scratch, as you can buy prefab accessory dwelling units from a wide variety of places and get them assembled much faster. These prefab kits usually cost around $1,500 and $4,000 but remember you will also need to pay a professional contractor to set it up. 

Customizations and Enhancements

Finally, the last aspect you need to consider is all the customizations and enhancements you wish to add to the shed. Different sheds with different purposes will need extra enhancements that will vary their price. One of the most common enhancements is playhouse sheds, which cost up to $5,000. 

Shed Types

Many people build outdoor studio sheds to suit their specific needs, but not all of them are the same. Therefore, many shed types aim to satisfy different needs. In the following list, we will go through the most popular types of sheds you can get for your backyard and their costs. 

Storage Shed Cost

Storage Shed Cost

In most cases, homeowners will run out of storage space in their homes, which is why they build a storage shed where they can keep all spillover items and equipment. These sheds commonly feature several shelves and other areas where you can easily organize your items, and they can cost anywhere from $300 to $15,000. 

Garden Shed Cost

Garden sheds are typically the least expensive ones, as they're relatively small and only consist of a standing wardrobe with several shelves. These outdoor studio sheds are commonly attached to a garage and can cost from $100 to $1,000. 

She Shed Cost

She Shed Cost

Sheds have become extremely popular in the past few years because they look like storage sheds with several upgrades, such as windows, drywall, and a perfect structure for relaxing or even using as a home office. These sheds tend to cost around $5,000 and $15,000. 

Horse Run-in Shed Cost

If you own a horse or another animal, you will need an agricultural shed to protect your animals against harsh weather. These sheds are open on one side so that your livestock is free to wander around however it wishes, and they will cost you up to $10,000 depending on their size and materials. 

Benefits of Building a Shed

Although building an office pod can be pretty costly in some cases, it brings fantastic benefits you may haven't thought of. The best benefits you will get when owning a shed are the following.



One of the most obvious benefits of building a garden studio shed is an extra storage area for keeping all your tools and equipment. This is especially useful when you have items lying around your house and don't know where else to put them. If you opt for building one of these garden studio sheds, you will need to invest around $300 and $15,000. 


Many people wish to keep their belongings as safe as possible, and owning a shed can help them do that, as they can add all kinds of padlocks and security systems to it so that no one can steal their bikes or other equipment. Some people even choose to add a steel door to prevent thieves from breaking into the modern shed

Return on Investment

Return on Investment

The final fantastic benefit you'll get from building a garden studio shed is that it tends to raise the value of your home. However, this will depend on several factors, such as the quality of the materials and its curb appeal. The backyard office kits that give a better return on investment can be used like any other room of your home, and you will receive these gains once you decide to sell your house. 

How to Save Money When Building a Shed

Although building an outdoor office shed can have several benefits, we want you to be as cost-effective as possible. Therefore, the following tips and tricks will help you save as much money as possible when getting your shed. 

Purchase a Shed Near Your Home

You don't have to build a garden studio shed from scratch. Sometimes, you can find a shed company near your house that offers free delivery. This will save you shipping and manufacturing costs. However, please remember to thoroughly read the instructions before assembling your shed. 

Choose Less Expensive Materials

Choose Less Expensive Materials

Another easy way of spending less money on your shed is choosing less expensive materials. Asphalt shingles are much more expensive than tin roofs, while metal roofs can be the costliest. You can talk to your contractor to find the most effective option for your case while considering environmental factors. 

Use Skids Instead of Concrete Foundations

In most cases, the best option is to get a concrete foundation, but it is also the most expensive option, as it can cost up to $12,300. However, if your jurisdiction approves it, you can opt for skids, which are much cheaper and save you at least $1,000. 

Questions to Ask Your Contractor Before Building Your Shed

When upgrading your home, you need to be aware of everything the contractors will do as much as possible, as this will prevent you from getting scammed later on. In order to do that, you can ask the following questions. 

Who Will Install the Foundation?

Most prefabricated shed kits include assembly in their price, but if they don't, you will need to find independent contractors who can install them for you, which can be pretty costly. 

Will You Provide the Materials and the Workmanship?

Another crucial aspect you must be aware of is whether you will need to purchase the materials elsewhere, as most contractors only cover the workmanship. 

Can I DIY Some of It?

Some people who have previously worked in construction sometimes choose to DIY part of the shed project. However, if this is the case, we advise you to talk it out first with your contractor so that both of you know which part of the project you'll be taking care of and how much money that will cost. 

DIY vs. Hiring a Professional

You must know its implications if you choose to DIY your shed project. In most cases, you must have previous experience in construction and learn all about the materials and equipment you'll be using so that you don't waste valuable money. 

Most people don't have the needed background to execute these projects, so they are better off leaving them to professional contractors. In addition, specific parts of the project, such as installing the concrete foundation, electrical wiring, and other specialized appliances, must be done by a professional to ensure everything is done correctly. 


Now that you know everything you need to know before building a shed, you probably still have some questions that need to be answered before starting your project. That's why you should check the following list of frequently asked questions. 

Is It Cheaper to Build or Buy a Shed?

In most cases, buying a shed or a work pod will be much cheaper than building one from scratch. If you want to build a custom shed, you will need to pay up to $150 per square foot. On the other hand, if you buy a shed kit, you only need to pay up to $20 per square foot to assemble it. 

How Much Does It Cost to Build a Shed?

Considering that most studio shed kits cost from $60 to $150 per square foot, you would need around $8,640 and $21,600 to build a 12-foot By 12-foot shed. 


How Long Does It Take to Build a Shed?

If you hire the right people, it should take them about eight hours to build a 10 by 10-foot prefab studio cabin. However, if they're making it from scratch, it can take more than two weeks to get it done. 

Bottom Line

Building a shed can have fantastic benefits, but it can be a bit costly, especially if you're not aware of everything that comes into play when doing it. Luckily, after reading this, you can check out Autonomous best prefab cabins to improve your home.

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WRITTEN BYAutonomous

We build office products to help you work smarter.

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