Buying and moving a Used Storage Shed
So you want to buy a shed you found in the local paper or online BUT you are responsible for moving it to your home. How much will it cost to move the shed?
We receive these calls all the time. There is no set price for relocating a storage shed. There are too many variables to be considered such as the height, width, distance, access and construction of the building.
So where should you look when considering a used shed? What do you need to know before handing over the cash?
Depending on where you live finding a used shed won’t be much of a problem it’s just finding the right shed to suit your needs. Give yourself some time. Don’t jump at the first shed you see unless it is just what you’re looking for.
Start with local shed dealers! Trade-ins are relatively common in our industry or at least for those of us who deliver the majority of our sheds fully assembled. Today alone we brought in 2 trade-in sheds. Both are in very good shape and both will sell for 25% less than a comparable new shed.
Local Paper – Check the for sale section. People often list their sheds in the farm and garden section or the household goods section.
eBay – Most of the sheds on eBay are from retailers and are pricey but it can’t hurt to look.
Craigslist – Probably your best bet. Use search terms such as sheds, barns, toolsheds, outbuildings etc. Keep the transportation cost in mind when inquiring about a building. I would suggest staying within 80 miles of your location. Watch out for scammers! If the seller asks for a deposit to “hold” the shed before you look at it RUN AWAY! Also watch out for shed dealers in disguise. I know of one company which posts as if he is just another guy selling his shed. If a dealer is resorting to this method it’s a company you don’t want to buy from.
Estate sales – Read through the contents or for larger estate sales ask for a list of the items for sale. Often times the shed is not on the short list in an advertisement.
Once you find a shed which suits your needs compare the price with a comparable new shed. Ideally, with a new shed from the same manufacturer/dealer. There have been many times a new shed from me delivered to the customer is less than they just paid for a used shed due to the cost to relocate it.
Once you find a shed which will work and is well within your budget there are some important questions you need answered:
Was the shed delivered fully assembled? If so:
- Is the shed anchored to concrete or the ground? Sometimes it’s impossible to tell if there are footings etc.
- Where did you buy the shed? If it is from a local shed company it is always best to contact them first with regard to moving the shed.
- When does it need to be moved? If there is a narrow window to get the shed out then line someone up right away. Sometimes weather plays a big factor in whether or not a shed can be moved so try and get the move scheduled several days prior to a closing etc.
- Is there any wiring which needs to be disconnected before transport?
- Is the shed interior finished? If so how? Sheetrock and tile can crack during a move. It also adds a lot of weight. On the ground it is fine but when traveling over the road the additional weight could cause structural damage or even failure!
If the shed was NOT delivered in one piece:
- If it was constructed on site then you need to check the accessibility of the site. Remember a truck or a truck and trailer will need to get to the shed. In some cases the company moving the shed may use a “ez-shed mover” or something similar however the shed will still be coming out of the yard in one piece so be sure and check the accessibility or ask the company to come and do a site check.
- What is the height of the shed? Obviously, if it’s too tall to go over the road then there will be an additional charge to remove and reinstall the roof. On average the height from the ground to the peak can be a maximum of 11’ to be hauled over the road.
- What is the construction? Is it “road worthy”? Sheds with no floor require cross bracing and are much trickier to haul. The framing is also important.
- Take a LOT of pictures of the inside and outside of the shed as well as the yard. I always ask for pictures before give a rough estimate. Even with pictures giving a quote over the phone is risky.
What about the delivery?
- Is your yard ready to receive the shed? Is the area where you are placing it level? It is a good idea to prepare the site in advance of delivery. Site preparation
- Is your site accessible?
You don’t want the person moving the shed to show up and tell you they can’t get it in your yard. Believe me it happens! We get to a site which we are told is completely accessible and there is a 5’ concrete wall surrounding the yard.
In the end the more information you can provide the easier it will be for the shed dealer to give you at least a ball park figure.