If you don’t feel you can tackle the site preparation you can opt to hire a local landscape contractor.
The crushed stone base is now the most widely accepted site preparation for sheds under 400 square feet.
To be sure that your layout is square measure diagonally from corner to corner and be sure these distances are equal.
Depending on how high you will be building your base you will need additional timbers to be used as “dead men”.
I want it firm enough to resist shifting but NOT so firm that water tends to linger around. Or maybe a combo of it and a Road-Pack type mix where main runners would sit (if it has them)? I’m uploading some older posts and a section for people to share pictures of their sheds. Is there a way to use the stone method as a foundation with large roots very near the surface? If the tree is not dead then you run the risk of having the roots knock the shed out of level over time. You could also dig around the roots the best you can and back fill with the crushed stone however you will still have some leveling issues in the future.
I would suggest stoning on top of the roots and then setting the shed on some 2 or 4 inch thick solid concrete blocks.
When you get backsplash around the shed from rainwater running off the roof the stone which extends around the perimeter keeps the run off from splashing dirt back onto the side. Pooling water could be an issue if you get several inches of rain or if the site is in a low lying area but having done thousands of sites using the crushed stone base method I have yet to experience a problem. With the crushed stone base is there any need for runners or will it be ok to just start your floor joists on top of the crushed stone once leveled up? We remove all grass and up to a foot of soil then install, grade and compact crushed stone. A family owned and operated landscaping company proudly serving the Ottawa Area for over 10 years.
Do I need a building permit?The Barn Yard provides every customer with an engineered drawing of their building, our insurance information, our contractors license, and all other necessary paperwork to obtain a building permit. How do I get ready for the delivery of my shed?We recommend a crushed stone pad as the shed foundation. What are the differences between your series?Size, height, roof pitch, and overhang style are key differences between our buildings, as illustrated in the diagram.
Ask about our Stone Pad service!The Barn Yard not only provides you with affordable, quality storage buildings, but we can also help you properly prepare your site. Remember, installing a stone pad does not mean placing the storage building onto blocks, or a simple layer of stone.
If you are in doubt regarding your site accessibility, please call us to discuss your property layout. A common misconception is that a shed should be elevated on cinder blocks to help prevent rot and insect damage.
When digging out the area to accept the stone, start at the lowest area and establish the grade by digging down 4-6″.
A cement slab is one of the more expensive ways to prepare your site, however if done correctly it can also be the best.
Your  local ordinances will define property line set-back requirements and allowable building square footage relative to lot size. Additionally, residents of planned communities often have their own set of rules, regulations and approval process that must be considered. As the property owner you will be responsible for all compliance requirements in your particular area.

Placement of your Gardensheds™ building will require a solid, flat, level site with proper grading. In layout of your foundation we often encourage clients to run corner stakes with perimeter mason string. We suggest you work directly with a local landscape contractor to determine the foundation that will best suit your needs. To properly prepare a gravel or stone base, will require an excavation of approximately 4-5” of top soil. If you prefer the look of a brick or paver perimeter outside your building this is an attractive alternative. A less common, but acceptable foundation is a wood pier construction with frame support (much like a deck without the decking floor).
Click on an image to enlarge photo.Please review our photo collection to helpyou decide on a style of shed andoptions to meet your needs. In our storage shed buyers guide we discuss site preparation but I am going to go a little more in depth here.
For over 18 years we have been recommending this type of site preparation and within the past 2 years more and more towns and municipalities have begun to catch on and recommend this type of base to those applying for shed permits. The water will wash the finer particles through the stone allowing the crushed rock to settle. The crushed stone will compact well enough to support the building while still allowing for drainage. Over time they are going to deteriorate and cause the stone and shed to settle and fall out of level.
Seems like if you dig a 3 inch hole and fill it with rock, you have a 3 inch deep pool full of rocks, whereas without the hole the water could run down a slope and away from the building. Further, it keeps weeds and grass from growing around the shed which will cause the siding to deteriorate over time. Should landscape cloth (the type that is placed under mulch) be under the gravel to inhibit the growth of weeds around the shed? This allows the floor to breathe whereas putting the joists directly on the stone will limit airflow. We can build a base out of gravel or cement that will serve as a strong foundation for any shed. The reason we recommend this is because a crushed stone pad provides 100% floor support and drainage.
We accept cash, check, Visa, MasterCard, AMEX, & Discover Card for your initial deposit, with the balance due upon delivery.
By utilizing The Barn Yard’s Stone Pad service, you and your building will benefit in many ways, including maximizing the appearance and durability of the building as well as extending the lifespan of your building.
Not having an accessible and properly prepared site may result in a delay in the delivery of your building. This may have been the case 30 years ago, however, since the introduction of pressure treated lumber and today’s more durable sidings this is no longer necessary. You can now excavate the rest of the site keeping in mind the site should be level when finished.
A slab will keep the shed level and prevent grass and weeds from growing both under and around your shed.
The shed will be placed on the truck according to our specs above and the truck will back up to your site. Permit requirements vary from one municipality to the next so it is best to check with your local building department to inquire about specific requirements. A property survey that indicates your proposed building location and size may be required as part of the application process. We are available to assist you with the building specifications and CAD drawing that may be required for permit application.

This will also help you to better visualize the footprint of your building and will give you a better sense of scale and proportion and to determine if the size is adequate for your intended needs. The size of your foundation pad should be approximately 2’ larger than your building footprint to allow for proper drainage. With that said,starting at the highest corner wrap the string around the bottom of the stake and run it to the lowest stake.
Drill holes through the timbers every 4 feet and rebar the timbers into place using the 4? lengths of rebar. Eventually, they may push the stone and therefore the shed up causing it to be out of level so keep that in mind.
To avoid damage to the building and your property, your site must also be clear of all obstructions, including fences, trees, etc. Since every property is different, our delivery drivers and staff are experienced in assessing and delivering to the most difficult areas. A slab is also beneficial if you intend on storing larger items (wheel barrow, lumber, grass catcher etc.) behind or next to your shed.
If we cannot get to your site, you as the customer are ultimately responsible to position your shed, or to pay for extra charges if the driver needs to hand-roll the shed, use extra equipment, or turn the shed. The advantage of this approach is that we know how to conceal wiring and make effort not to "chew"" up the framing with careless drilling, boring, etc.
It’s important to note that what often appears level to the eye is often not level when measured. For instance if you are creating a elevated stone pad for a 10?x16? shed you would first add 2? to the length and width then add the four sides together.
For larger bases you may want to add “dead men” which are timbers which run perpendicular to the outer timbers to help keep the from moving however since the outer timbers are set in the ground the dead men are not entirely necessary. When preparing the site with crushed stone be sure to extend the size of your base 2′ longer and wider then the actual size of the shed.
Increasing the size of the slab by a couple feet is a good idea to accommodate these items.
It is also important that the shed has pressure treated timbers running underneath and perpendicular to the floor joists in order to elevate the shed and allow adequate ventilation. A line level or laser is often the best means for determining if a site is truly level or not.
For example, if you have a 12 foot wide building, you will need 16 feet of clearance to access your site.
Place your shed in the center of the pad leaving a 1′ perimeter of stone around the shed. We use a vapor barrier and closed cell foam insulation on the building underside to make water-tight and critter-resistant.
While not required, we suggest a solid and secure perimeter frame to hold the stone in place. If you have concerns about your site, please bring or email photos to your sales representative. Proper attention to your site preparation will result in an attractive installation and will require less maintenance on your part.
At the lowest point measure from the string to the ground and add 4″ to this distance. Since this is the lowest area of the site this is where you will be excavating the least digging down only 4 inches. At the highest point of the site you will be digging down until you have excavated enough to create a flat surface to receive the stone.

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