Can You Legally Turn a Shed Into a House

Can You Legally Turn a Shed Into a House: What You Should Know

An old shed in your yard can be an awesome living house if you need different space. Or you can take advantage of the space in your yard and build a shed to live in. On all these occasions, converting a shed into a house is more than a dream.

But can you legally turn a shed into a house? Well, read on and learn different states’ rules on shed usage.

At times, things get hectic in the house. You need to do some studies or require a quiet space for refreshment. You plan to move to a small house for your peace. But will the authorities allow you?

As usual, sheds are designed as storage structures for your garden and other tools. It’s for that reason, you will find ready movable sheds with most dealers.

But what if you have creative ways to turn your shed into a house? If your local authorities allow you, it can be a great way to get things started.

Can You Legally Turn a Shed Into a House

You can legally turn a shed into a house. And just as the name “legally” suggests, you should meet all the living in shed regulations set by the authorities combined with other factors.

Back in 2016, a state official warned against converting ready movable sheds into living rooms. Tennessee State Fire Marshal’s Office released this warning to protect the buyers.

The statement also pointed to observing the state laws before converting a shed into a house.

“Don’t get duped by a seller who promises removable as an affordable living space. Readily removable structures are not built to be used as living spaces”. Said commissioner Julie Mix McPeak.

In the statement, ready removable means a ready-built structure without a foundation or support mechanism.

So, can you live in a shed on your property? If you observe all the regulations, you can peacefully live in your shed.

Key Reasons Many Homeowners Convert their Sheds to Houses

1. To create an entertainment space

You can set a TV in the shed and convert it into a movie room. Additionally, you can set up gaming equipment like the pool tables, dartboards, and others to have fun with friends during leisure.

2. Space for guests

Instead of paying for a hotel, you can spend less by hosting your guests at home in your shed. You have more privacy and time to hold talks without disruptions at home.

3. Space for the family

If you have bought new land and the house construction continues, you can move into a shed with your family.

After buying new land, a friend opted to live in a shed for 6 months. His house was under construction, and he decided to move out of the rented house and save some money for the project.

The shed was well designed, and even though he rented a space to store other household items, it was a great idea.

4. Rental income

Nowadays, Airbnb is common. You can convert your shed and make some extra cash if you have the shed in a safe and permanent residential area.

5. Affordable and Widely Available

Sheds are very cheap to build, and you will find building materials in most stores. Many people with low income opt for sheds instead of renting.

See also: Calculating the cost to build a shed

Factors to Consider When Converting a Shed Into a House

Before setting up a shed structure, there are several factors you should consider. Take a look;

1. Zoning laws

Some areas are zoned for commercial, industrial, residential, agriculture, etc.

As such, if you decide to convert a shed into a living room in an agriculturally zoned area, you risk being penalized by the authorities.

However, if your shed is built in the yard, you can opt for permits and other recommendations.

2. Building codes

Your shed should meet the building codes required by the law. You may be lucky if you have a modern shed because most new sheds meet the standard.

However, if you have an old shed, it may be hard to move in before it’s inspected.

3. Home Owners Association Rules

Home Owners Associations are private organizations that set the rules for the neighborhood. It’s wise to confirm with the local HOA before moving into your shed.

See also: How close can I shed be to the property line?

4. Permits

Finally, before moving into a shed as a living room, obtain all the permits from the authorities. Usually, the shed is inspected to confirm it meets all the safety standards.

How to Make a Shed a Living Room

If you plan to live in a shed, you should follow all the necessary processes to ensure it’s safe and comfortable. Here is a suggestion of the activities you should perform.

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Step 1: Find a space

Find a suitable space in your yard to move or build your yard. You should observe all the regulations, like the spacing from other buildings.

See also: How do you pick up a shed and move it?

Step 2: Check the Zoning, HOA regulations, and Building codes

You can visit the municipality offices and HOA to learn all the necessary regulations.

Step 3: Apply for Permits

Most authorities have an online portal or offices you can visit and obtain the permit. The inspector will also visit and inspect the shed or the area you plan to build.

Step 4: Purchase the materials

Buy all the required materials before starting the construction. You can discuss with the contractor all the required materials. Luckily, the contractor may refer you to the best sellers.

Step 5: Build the Shed

Build the shed, do the plumbing, and install the internet, electricity, and sewer system.

On the other hand, source all the necessary items for the kitchen, set beds depending on the shed size, and do the insulation.

Ideally, insulate the ceiling, walls, and floor to ensure the rooms meet all the safety standards.

See also: How to insulate a shed on a budget

Step 6: Move-in

After everything is in order, you can move in and enjoy yourself with your family.

FAQs – Can You Legally Turn a Shed into a House

Can You Make a House Out of a Shed?

Many homeowners start with tiny sheds before building their houses. The only requirement is obtaining a permit from the authority.

Can I Live in a Shed Legally in Florida?

You cannot live in a shed in Florida. The law in Florida states that sheds are built with lower standards for homes.

Can I Turn My Shed Into a Guest House?

You can convert the shed into a guest house if you have a permit. However, it’s complicated work because you will have to hire a professional.

So, can you legally turn a shed into a house? It depends on your local authority regulations. Some states allow it, while others have completely banned living in sheds.


  • Ricky

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