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How To Make A Backyard Office- Step By Step Guide

As more and more companies and organizations are taking up remote working as a viable alternative, outdoor spaces and particularly backyard offices have become a popular trend. The desire for home offices has grown so much so that people all across the world are curious as to how they can construct a backyard office.

You first have to get building permits. After this, locate the site for your backyard office and clear it. Proceed to lay the foundation and then install the subfloor and joist. After this, erect the walls and then install the roof. Once the roof is in place, install the appropriate insulation to the floors and the walls. Proceed to put up the windows and the doors and then paint your backyard office.

In this article, we are going to discuss how to construct a backyard office and how much this will cost you. So read on to find out more.

How to Make a Backyard Office – Step by Step Guide

Before building a backyard office from scratch, there are essential elements that you must be aware of. These are:

  • Foundation – Different garden offices will require different foundations. The type of foundation you choose will also be determined by the conditions in the area in which you live. The most recommended type of foundation is gravel/crushed rock. You can also go with concrete slabs, poured footers, wooden foundations, etc. Choose one that is appropriate for your building and requires little site preparation.
  • Electrical system – It’s important to consider how the electric system will be installed. Consider hiring a professional for this.
  • Plumbing – If you decide to have bathroom facilities in your backyard office, then it’s important to figure out how to install this.
  • Interior – It’s important to have a clear picture of how you intend the interior of your backyard office to look like.
  • Planning permission and building regulations – You will have to look at the standards in your local area for building backyard offices and apply for a permit.
  • Cost – You have to consider whether you have adequate resources to build your backyard office. The type of backyard office will depend on your budget.

 

So how do you go about building your backyard office?

  1. Get the necessary permits from your local area.
  2. Choose the site where you intend to build your backyard office. Clear the area so that you can lay the foundation.
  3. Lay the foundation. The process of laying the foundation of your backyard office will vary depending on the type of foundation you choose. If you are unsure, enlist the help of a building contractor. The foundation should match the desired size of your backyard office. Use 4 concrete blocks that sit on the concrete footplates as support to the frame of the structure. These are features that you can fill in for the joists of the frame.
  4. Install the subfloor and joist- Place the joist and proceed to install your backyard office’s flooring in a horizontal direction from that of the joists.
  5. Construct the walls of your backyard office. The procedure for this will depend on the material you are using for construction be it wood, metal, vinyl, or bricks. Use cross beams to support your walls. Make sure you leave room for the windows and the doors.
  6. Install the roof. Once the walls are in place, the next step is to put up the roof.
  7. Install appropriate insulation in the foundation and then proceed to lay the floor. After you insulate the foundation, insulate the walls as well. Cover the insulation on the walls with wooden boards.
  8. Put up the windows and nail them into place securely. Do the same for the door. You could simply screw the door into the building frame.
  9. After this paint your backyard office however you like. Be creative.

And with that, you will be done constructing your backyard office. This is just an overall guide on the process of constructing your backyard office. We recommend getting in touch with a professional building contractor to get things right.

How Much Does It Cost to Build a Backyard Office?

The first question that interested parties ask when it comes to acquiring backyard offices is how much will it cost me? This is quite understandable. So are you one such person who has decided to take the plunge and build a backyard office but is unsure of how much it will cost? Worry not!

In this article, we will do our level best to give you an idea of how much of a dent building a backyard office is going to leave on your wallet. So buckle up and pay close attention!

In most instances, the cost of building a backyard office will depend on several factors. These are:

  • The size of the backyard office- The bigger the office, the more it is going to cost you.
  • The materials that are used.
  • The labor involved.
  • The construction methods.

All in all, with these factors in consideration, it will probably cost you anywhere around $3,000-$7,500 to build a backyard office. This is not that much when compared to purchasing a ready-made backyard office which can cost as much as $10,000.

Building a backyard office is actually not the same as building a house or any other building for that matter. The techniques and building principles differ, and also the quality of finishes will be different. For a backyard office, the foundations and floor slabs don’t have to be as heavy as those of a house. You also don’t need large windows and fancy ventilation in the backyard office. At times, plumbing is also not necessary.

The truth is that there are 4 different types of backyard offices and the cost of building each is different. They include:

  • Metal/Steel- This is the cheapest option with a price range of around $2,500-$6,000.
  • Wooden/Timber- These can cost anywhere around $3,000-$7,500 to build.
  • Vinyl- They have a similar build to wooden offices, with the only difference being the finishes. They can cost around $3,000-$8,500 to build.
  • Brick- The cost of building a brick backyard office will be around $3,500-$6,500.

Note that these are all cost estimates for a 10X10 ft. backyard office.

Below are breakdowns for the cost estimates for each of these types of backyard offices:

Wooden

Wooden backyard offices are the most popular and common types. This is because wood is easy to acquire, looks great, and naturally blends with the outdoors. What most people don’t know however is that wooden structures require regular maintenance because if the wood is left unmaintained, it will rot and spoil.  So if this is your choice you may have to factor in maintenance costs.

The material costs will be as follows:

  • Floor joists- $17-$200
  • Floor boards/Plywood- $200-$400
  • Rafters- $250-$500
  • Wall siding- Hardwood ($80-$350), Cedar ($250-$700), Pine ($250-$375)

The total cost of materials will be approximately $1,325-$3,100.

You may also have to include labor costs if you can’t do the work yourself. Hiring a professional handyman or contractor can cost you anywhere around $2,600-$3,900. A carpenter will cost you from $1,000-$2,500.

Metal

Metal or steel backyard offices come in a variety of forms. Thin sheeting, corrugated sheeting, or even steel poles can be used to build a backyard office. If you want a sturdy, durable, and long-lasting structure, then this is the right choice for you. They are also the cheapest option.

The steel needs to be galvanized for maximum durability because it can rust over time. They are fairly light which means that if you live in a windy area you will require a heavier foundation.

The material costs will be:

  • Floor joists- $175-$200
  • Floor boards/Plywood- $200-$400
  • Wall framing (I-beam and channels) – $800-$1,700.
  • Wall siding- Thin steel sheets ($350-$550), Corrugated metal sheets ($280-$500)
  • Roof joists/rafters- $250-$400

The approximate total cost of materials will be $1,705-$3,750.

You will also need to hire professional help. A steelworker or welder will cost around $600-$2,100.

Vinyl

Vinyl backyard offices are a new trend. They consist of a wooden framework and wooden boarding that is covered with vinyl siding. They are maintenance-free and stronger than metal backyard offices. They, however, cost more but they do offer better value for your cash.

The approximate material costs for building a vinyl backyard office are:

  • Floor joists- $175-$200
  • Floor boards/Plywood- $200-$400
  • Wall framing (4 sides)- $700-$2,000
  • Wall siding- OSB panels ($250-$400), Vinyl siding ($300-$700)
  • Roof joists/rafters- $250-$500.

The total approximate cost for materials will be around $1,875-$ 4,200.

You may need to get professional help in which case a professional handyman will cost around $2,600-$3,900 and a carpenter will cost $1,000-$1,500.

Brick

Using bricks or concrete blocks to build your backyard office does seem a bit extreme especially if you are in the USA. Brick structures will cost you more than all other types of backyard offices. A large part of this can be attributed to the labor cost you will likely incur. Their advantage is that they have good insulation and are the sturdiest.

The approximate material costs for a brick backyard office are:

  • Floor joists ($175-$200), Concrete floor slab ($250-$750)
  • Floor finish- Tiles ($200-$1,000), (Boarding $400-$800), Carpet ($250-$900)
  • Walls (4 sides) – $1,400-$1,800
  • Roof joists/rafters- $250-$500.

The total approximate cost for building materials will be around $2,275-$4,250.

You will be forced to hire professional help. A bricklayer will cost around $1,000-$2,000.

Construction of a brick backyard office will take longer.

Additional costs

No matter how hard we may have tried to cover all cost aspects you need to be aware of, there will always be additional costs that you should be mindful of. Some of the items we mention may be generic or only applicable in some instances. They are:

  • Plumbing– If you plan to have a bathroom and/or running water in your backyard office, plumbing will be an additional cost that you need to be mindful of.
  • Electricity– This will be a requirement for your backyard office. You will need a licensed electrician. This will be an additional cost, and may also add to your monthly electric bill.
  • Doors and Windows– Just one door and two windows will be sufficient for your backyard office. The cost will depend on your choice.
  • Permits– Before erecting your backyard office, you may require a permit. Make sure to look up the building codes and then obtain the necessary permits. The cost of this will vary according to the state you are in.
  • Foundations– They come in many shapes, materials, and sizes and will affect the cost of your project. The type of foundation will be determined by the type of backyard office you intend on building as well as the conditions where you live. You will therefore need to consider the cost of the foundation that is best for your backyard office.
  • Roofing– Metal, plastic sheets, and slate tiles are just but a few of the roofing materials you may need. Sheets are the best and cheapest for a backyard office and can cost anywhere around $200-$500.
  • Building area– All figures and estimates in this article are based on a 10 X 10 ft. backyard office. Depending on your desired size, the cost will go up or down. Going bigger means more materials and labor which equals a higher cost.
  • Special services– Services such as interior designs and architectural designs as well as landscape design may also be a factor you should consider. They aren’t however, necessary.

All in all, building a backyard office is a complex undertaking and you should therefore approach it with a clear presence of mind. There is often little to no room for guesswork and errors. Hopefully, this article has enlightened you.