Running out of Room? Add a Portable Outdoor Storage Solution
There’s nothing that causes bigger household headaches than constantly running out of storage space. It’s way too easy to fill up your shed, barn, basement, or garage and be stuck parking your car outside. Adding a portable outdoor storage solution is the quickest way to reclaim your space!
With a simple shelter, you can move on from the days of battling clutter and the elements to keep your equipment safe. Whether you need to protect your ATV and lawn mower, move your harvesting gear closer to the garden, or store seasonal patio furniture, there are tons of portable outdoor structures to help!
Identify your storage and organization goals
Is your shed totally maxed out and you need a new place to keep the lawn mower? Or maybe you just need a temporary canopy to protect your boat when it’s not in the water. Start by listing the items you want to store and totaling their dimensions to give you an idea of how much space you’ll need. Don’t forget to factor in extra room for opening car doors or any storage racks you intend to add.
Think about seasonality and which items require year-round storage. You might only need a greenhouse during colder months, which means this space will be free to store other gear in the summer. Portable shelters and storage units can be used for many purposes and some are built to withstand extreme heat or cold, making them ideal solutions for four-season storage.
Determine the best location(s) for adding storage solutions
You might already have the perfect spot for a new garden shed or know there’s enough room on your driveway to place a portable garage. But if you’re starting from scratch, think about the different options that will make your life easier. If you have a porch garden, for example, adding a simple shelving unit on the porch for gardening tools can save you lots of schlepping time!
Here are some factors to consider when picking an outdoor storage location:
- Ability to drive in and out: choose a spot on or next to your driveway so you don’t disrupt the landscaping.
- Ability to use a trailer: the same as above plus room to back the trailer into or near the structure.
- Proximity to relevant projects: pick a location that’s close to your house, garden, or worksite. If you’ll be doing mixed activities like chopping and storing firewood, you may want to choose some middle ground between the splitting spot and your home.
Understand local regulations
Some states require permits before making any big changes to your property. It’s easy to assume that portable garages and sheds don’t fall within these regulations, but be careful! Even temporary carports and other structures that don’t touch your house often still need permits. Be sure to check with your local authorities to learn more and apply for anything relevant.
Choose a storage solution
There are many factors to consider when narrowing down your outdoor storage options, including size, material, price, and resilience against the elements. For more detailed information, check out our buying guide to help you choose the right portable storage unit or shelter for your property.
The outdoor shelters and storage units we offer from ShelterLogic are durable and budget-friendly options that can quickly be installed or repurposed. Keep your storage goals in mind when picking between our ShelterLogic products:
Shed-in-a-Box®: Ideal for four-season storage, these portable sheds protect equipment against harsh sunlight, rain, wind, tree sap, and more. They are easy to set up or move around your home and are an economical storage choice available in many different sizes.
Arrow Metal Storage Sheds: For even sturdier storage needs, these metal sheds protect landscaping equipment, gardening supplies, or outdoor gear. They can also double as extra space for home workshops, art studios, florist shops, and more!
GrowIT® Greenhouse-in-a-Box: Store and grow plants in a protected environment that can be moved as the weather changes. Featuring roll-up side panels, these greenhouses can double as extra storage for bulky items and shade canopies for outdoor activities.
Max AP™ Canopy Keep your car, lawn equipment, or outdoor furniture out of the harsh sun by storing them under a durable canopy. These create shade wherever you need it and can be used for backyard gatherings, tailgate parties, farm stands, outdoor yoga studios, beach trips, and many other fun activities!
AutoShelter®: A budget-friendly option for vehicle and equipment storage, these portable shelters are a quick solution for seasonal needs. They are best for compact vehicles, motorcycles, ATVs, lawn and garden equipment, bicycles, and other outdoor gear.
Garage-in-a-Box®: Create an entire garage-worth of space without renovating your house. These portable garages are extremely durable and ideal for year-round vehicle and equipment storage. Even a souped-up truck can fit in here!
Always keep in mind that all portable storage solutions need to be secured to the ground so they don’t blow away. Many models come with customized anchors or other tie-downs. If the shed, garage, or canopy you choose doesn’t include these supports, don’t forget to add a set of anchors!
Prepare the land
Once you’ve picked a portable storage solution, it’s time for the fun part! If you’ll be installing the structure on land that you mow or maintain regularly, it shouldn’t take much longer than your normal routine to prepare the spot. The same goes for installing a portable garage on your driveway – just clean the area and mow/trim any overgrown grass lining the sides.
If you’re trying to reclaim an unused piece of your property for storage, it will take some careful preparation and potentially the use of power equipment to clear the land. To help decide how to proceed with a new area, assess the following:
- Determine the height and thickness of the grass. If it’s too high or dense for your lawn mower, consider using a Trimmer Mower, which is available in walk-behind and tow-behind options.
- Identify thicker brush or saplings that are too dense for a lawn mower or trimmer mower. To remove these, we recommend a Field and Brush Mower, which uses a sturdy blade to cut down invasive growth.
- Remove any stumps and other tripping hazards with a Stump Grinder.
- If you’re working in a non-grassy area like gravel or dirt, use a Power Grader to level the ground. These powerful machines remove deep ruts and smooth over washouts.
- Any yard debris left over from this preparation stage can be put through a Chipper Shredder and repurposed. Don’t waste organic materials like brush, grass clippings, leaves, and twigs when they can be shredded and used as mulch around your property or added to your compost!
Install the storage unit
Carefully follow the instructions for setting up your portable canopy, shed, or garage. The tools you need will vary depending on model. But at a minimum, make sure you’re wearing work gloves and closed-toe shoes for safety. Many people choose to lay a large tarp underneath the storage unit to keep equipment and gear clean.
Some portable storage solutions can be really heavy, and if their final destination is a trek from your driveway, you might need some support to move these heavy items. Consider a motorized Powerwagon, a garden cart, or a hand truck to help haul bulky materials. These options are also great for transporting anything being stored inside the storage unit, such as firewood, hay, animal feed, and more.
Add shelving, wood racks, and other outdoor organizers
Having a shelter only goes so far – it’s what you use inside of these storage solutions that helps everything stay organized! The easiest way to keep small items within reach is with a storage rack. Getting your gear off the ground frees up a ton of extra space and helps items stay clean. You can also protect seasoned wood with a firewood rack, and don’t forget a tarp and bungees for quick equipment covers or transportation.
Check back for more!
There’s no wrong answer for how to store outdoor equipment – except not to store it! Every property is unique, and what matters is investing in a durable solution that will protect your gear. Keeping tools, vehicles, and household clutter contained will make your life easier and your neighbors happy!
There is almost a limitless supply of products that can help you store and organize your outdoor gear, and we will continue to expand our collection to bring you the best of them. Sign up for email updates and we will deliver them to your inbox!
Last updated: 9/30/2022