What are the Different Types of Outbuildings?

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  • Written By: Anna T.
  • Edited By: Melissa Wiley
  • Last Modified Date: 23 January 2020
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Some of the main types of outbuildings include garages, sheds, and greenhouses. Barns are also occasionally classified as outbuildings, although they tend to be much larger in size than what most people associate with the average outbuilding. An outbuilding is typically defined as any type of building on the same land as a house that is not connected to the house. People have the option of either building their own outbuildings or buying them ready-made. An outbuilding might additionally serve just one purpose, such as yard storage, or several purposes, such as a garage that is also used to store things.

Garages are often attached to houses, but occasionally they stand alone, apart from houses. When a garage is not attached to a house, it might also be referred to as an outbuilding. The average garage is big enough to hold at least one car and might also have room for storing other things, like lawn and garden tools, old furniture, or auto accessories. Some garages have stairs inside that lead to lofts, which may be used primarily for storage.


The most popular types of outbuildings may be in the form of sheds. There are many different styles and sizes of sheds, and people use them for a variety of different reasons. Sheds are often used to serve more than one purpose and might include space for a workshop complete with tools and lumber as well as room to store yard supplies, such as lawn mowers and weed eaters. People might also use their sheds to store other things that they do not have room for in their homes. Houses that do not have basements or attics to use for storage often have sheds to make up for the lack of storage space inside.

Greenhouses and barns are also types of outbuildings, although they are not normally used for storage. People use greenhouses to grow various plants and flowers, and barns are normally used to hold farm animals, such as horses and chickens, along with items necessary for the upkeep of these animals, such as animal feed or hay. Greenhouses tend to be very useful when people have lots of plants with little room for a garden, and they may also be used to keep plants alive throughout the winter during very cold temperatures. Houses with barn outbuildings usually have a number of other outbuildings as well, particularly in the form of sheds, because there may be more accessories necessary for use on the average farm than what a barn can hold.

Sheds are typically the easiest type of outbuilding to build because they tend to be smaller than garages or barns. People also occasionally buy sheds already built, and these vary in price and in size. Some ready-made sheds are customizable, and people can choose everything from the colors to how many windows, if any, they want. It is also possible to buy greenhouses ready-made, although these can also be built. Barns and garages almost always have to be built from the ground up on the land they are attached to, and many people choose to have these built at the same time their homes are built.


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