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Lean To Shed Plans, Tutorials, And Kits

While planting trees and keeping your grass green is crucial for a happy yard, so can adding something like a lean to shed to help keep things tidy. While this isn’t the only storage option, it is definitely one of the best. 

lean to shed
Image from Buck Custom Homes

It can be just as important to ensure that you have enough storage to keep everything you don’t want to be scattered about the yard away. One way to do this with little space is a lean to storage shed. 

What Is A Lean To Shed?

What Is A Lean To Shed
Image from Historic Shed

A lean to shed a shed that has a sloping roof and three walls. It is called lean to because the fourth wall is shared with another building, so it is leaning on that building. It is usually used as a lean to storage shed. 

While you can build that fourth wall, most of the time, that fourth wall is more of a frame to help secure the shed to the building. Oftentimes, there is a door or opening that leads from the shed to the building. 

How To Make Lean To Shed Plans

Lean To Shed Plans

You can actually make your own plans for a lean to shed if you have done similar things before. There are only a few steps to take and a few things you need to consider. From there, you can make it your own. 

The Foundation 

The first thing you will start with is a foundation. You can make any kind of foundation that you want, even concrete if you never plan on moving the shed. But for best results, a simple board and plywood floor are used.


The walls are what you will build next. We will go into details later but this is simply a 2×4 frame for the walls and you only really need to build three of them. Just remember that the back wall will be the tallest. 


The roof comes next. This is a little complicated as it involves angling your rafters. So we will talk more about how to do this later but you can plan this any way you like if you know what you are doing. 


Next comes electricity. Not all sheds will have electricity but most of them will at least have a light in the center of the room. However, you can always run drop cords to power your shed to make things easier. 

Doors And Windows

A door is important, the windows are optional. You will probably end up building a simple barn door for the front door of the shed. Windows can be added any way you like but keeping them small is ideal. 

How To Build A Lean To Shed

How To Make Lean To Shed Plans

There are a few different ways to build a lean to shed but the most common way is what we will go over today. These are the steps you will take to actually go about building the shed and not just planning it out. 

Step 1: Lay Gravel Base

This is actually primarily so that you can have a good base to build on, but if you’re working on grass or dirt, then it can be very useful to have a gravel base. To do this, you should start by digging down a few inches.

The exact depth is up to you but around four to six inches works well. From here, you can add a need barrier, a couple inches of sand, and then the top layer of gravel. Remember to always tamp it down.

Note: this doesn’t include building up or digging down to level the area. That is something you will need to do depending on where your grounds stands relative to the building. 

Step 2: Build Foundation Frame

The foundation frame usually consists of 2x6s. They will each be around 16-inches between them but no more. For a 4×8 shed, which is what we are building today, you will need seven four-foot boards and two eight-foot ones. 

Screw them in together as the base frame. Start by adding all the short boards to one long board and then add the last long board to hold everything together. Remember to mark each board where the others will lie. 

Step 3: Add Plywood Subfloor

After you build the simple frame, now comes one of the easiest parts. Get a 4×8 piece of plywood and secure it to the frame. You can start this by using wood glue or liquid nails. Then, screw or nail it in.

The liquid nails keep it in place so it isn’t askew whenever you finish but it also helps secure and seal it. However, you shouldn’t rely on it alone to hold the foundation together. Add that line of screws. 

Step 4: Build Three Walls

You will need to build three main walls for the lean to shed. It’s best to build all of the walls before installing them. So build simple frame walls with one wall being eight foot long and the other two being four foot. 

For this shed, all three of the walls will be the same height. The leaning part comes in with our next step. Remember to learn about building partitions and add in any window or door holes at this point. 

Step 5: Build Fourth Wall Frame

The fourth wall won’t be a full wall. Instead, it will be a frame that will allow the roof someplace to rest and lean to. You can build a full wall if you like but you can get by with simply using a frame for this.

The frame should be around a foot taller than the other walls. It should also have a baseboard, a board on each side, and then a top board. From there, you can add more security wherever you like. 

Step 6: Install Walls

Now it’s time to install the walls. Start off by securing the walls to the floor. From there, you can screw them to each other and have yourself a nice and solid shed. Don’t worry if it’s only at 80%, the roof will secure it the rest of the way. 

Step 7: Add Siding

You can add siding now or after the roof, but it can be helpful to go ahead and add it now so that you can see the slant that will be made whenever you cut it later with the roof. So install each piece, there should be four.

Step 8: Install Rafters

Install the rafters now. This is definitely the most complicated part. Because you will need to create a slot in each board on both ends so that it can rest securely on each end of the shed. This isn’t easy.

However, if you know what you are doing, then it shouldn’t be a problem. The cut itself isn’t difficult but getting it to the right angle can be. Start with one end and then make the other end match it.

Step 9: Put Down Roof

Now that you have the rafters installed, you can begin with the roof. Again, a plywood base will be ideal. But before you do that, cut off the excess siding to slant with the roof. Then, you can add the plywood.

It should be a simple piece of plywood. You may want to ensure that it is a little wider than four feet in case there needs to be an overhang. Around six feet will take care of anything on the back or the front. 

Step 10: Build Or Install Doors

Finally, it’s time to build your doors. Barn doors are usually preferable, or something like shed doors. Build your own or buy doors to ensure everything is secure. If you’re adding windows, add them now too.

Finally, you can paint and finish your shed out with trim. But everything necessary is done. Feel free to insulate and add electricity, but not all sheds need them, not if they are simply storage sheds.

Lean To Shed Kits


If you don’t want to worry about getting all of the right materials, you can simply buy a lean to shed kit on Amazon or at your hardware store. Here are a few kits to inspire you that you might be interested in. 

Arrow Lean To Shed- 4×7

5x3 FT Outdoor Storage Shed

The Arrow Shed is compact and safe. It also has the best ratings of any other lean to on Amazon with good reason. The size is pretty perfect, almost the same as the shed we built in the tutorial above.

If you’re not sure which shed kit to get then this is probably your best bet due to the size, the safety, and how easy it is to put together. Definitely, a safe choice that can fit in with any home style you may have. 

Keter Artisan Lean To Shed – 2 Sizes

Leisure Season Cedar Lean To Shed

This winning shed comes in two sizes. There’s the square 7×7 and then the longer 9×7 if you want the extra space or simply like the look of an oblong shed. It looks very nice but is much more expensive.

If you want to splurge then this is a good one to splurge on. It even comes with its own set of clerestory windows. The color scheme looks great, the doors are pleasant to use, and everyone will comment on the shed. 

Leisure Season Cedar Lean To Shed – 2.5×5

Leisure Season Cedar Lean To Shed - 2.5x5

If you want something small and stunning, this cedar shed by Leisure Season is for you. It’s quite small and closet-like but it is safe to use outdoors and did we mention it looks absolutely amazing next to your home?

The shed is also over five feet. While it won’t be tall enough to stand in, it is plenty large enough to store garden tools and is compact enough to fit almost anywhere. How could you not fall in love with the smell of cedar alone?

White Galvanized Lean To Shed – 5×3

5x3 FT Outdoor Storage Shed

If what you want is to save money, this shed is a wonderful deal. It is a smaller shed at five foot by three for and it is less than $200, with shipping being reasonable for such a kit as this, metal and all.

This shed is also white, which many people search for and can never find. Most sheds are grey, green, or some other dark color. But this shed is white metal and it looks great up against the house. Maybe a kit is for you after all.