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8×12 Storage Sheds: Your Guide for 2023

8x12 storage sheds

You’ve been thinking of buying that extra storage space for the backyard and have settled on an 8×12 small storage shed as the possible size. But before you place the order, let’s look at a few things to be sure you won’t wish you had ordered a larger one when it arrives (or three months later after it’s full and overflowing!) or find ways to get more storage space out of the 8×12 shed you hope to purchase.


Here’s the deal, an 8×12 storage shed is 96 square feet small. But consider that a shed is built with 2×4 framing which will intrude into your interior space making your useable space even less. A standard 2×4 measures 3 ½ inches which means you will lose 7 inches of interior space all around on an 8×12 shed.

8x12 shelves between studs 0

Not that all that space needs to be wasted. It may be useful as a place to hang garden tools or create tiny shelves between the studs for storing small things, but it is something to keep in mind as you shop for a shed.

All that to say, if you buy an 8×12 storage shed, you end up with around 85 square feet of space inside the framing. This can be used for different storage purposes like lawn care equipment, bike storage, etc. If you want to learn more about bike sheds, click here.


That is a question only you can answer

You want to begin by asking what all you hope to store in the 8×12 portable shed. Since the shed offers 96 square feet of interior space (minus the space taken up by the framing), you want to be sure it will do the job.

8x12 backyard shed pa

It’s much easier to go bigger before you order the portable shed, than wish you had a week later!

The best way to figure out if an 8×12 Shed is large enough for you is as follows:

  1. Get a piece of sidewalk chalk
  2. Measure out an area 8×12, the size your shed will be
  3. Then go gather your stuff and set it inside that area

If you have boxes you want to store, stack them on top of each other, park the lawnmower inside, grab your wheelbarrow or whatever else you hope to fit into the 8×12 shed, and place it inside the box you drew with the chalk. Keep in mind that if you’re thinking of storing heavier items, such as a lawnmower or wheelbarrow, you may want to add a shed ramp. For more information on shed ramps, take a look at our “Shed Ramps: A Comprehensive Overview” article.

Don’t forget to leave floor space to walk around. You don’t want a storage shed that is packed tight and no room to walk around (trust me, I’ve been there!).

what fits in an 8x12 shed

How to get more Space out of your 8×12 Shed

So, you have your stuff inside the box you drew but there are all those small items that you need a place for. The Christmas décor, pool cleaning equipment, leftover materials from the update you made to the house… And the shed is full…

You can either order a 10×12 backyard shed or a 10×20 building and make more space…

Or ask the question: “How can I get more space in an 8×12 storage shed?”

There are ways to expand the interior space of your 8×12 shed and get more inside. We’re going to discuss a few of those here.


The easiest way to get more interior space inside the new shed you want to buy is going higher. Let’s begin by talking about wall height.

8x12 amish barn sheds pa

The 8×12 Mini Barn Shed in the photo here has a very low wall. The wall is around 4’ tall but the roof design gives you the interior height. But even with that roof design, this 8×12 portable building gives you the least amount of cubic space on the interior of almost any shed on the market.

Keep in mind, you will not be able to use the side walls to hang your garden hoe or your garden rake vertically. If you want the best use of the wall space, consider going with a shed that has a higher wall space with another roof style or a Maxi Barn that has this same roof design but walls that are 2 ft higher.

Bottom line: You will greatly increase the amount of interior space of your 8×12 shed with higher walls.


The design of your roof has a lot to do with how much headroom your 8×12 storage shed will have.

8x12 workshop shed for sale

Take a look at the two examples here. The Standard Economy Workshop roof (left) has limited storage space in the roof area. Even if you add a loft to your 8×12 Standard Shed, the benefit will be minimal.

However, if you upgrade to a Premier Garden Shed (right), you’ll get a good bit more interior cubic feet inside your shed. The steeper roof pitch gives you much more space to stack things or to add a loft and store things above.

Get even more cubic feet of interior space with the 8×12 MaxiBarn, Gambrel, or Dutch Barn. The barn roof design gives you plenty of space to add a loft in the shed and has space to store boxes, décor, and any kind of knick-knack you can think of off the floor and in the loft. Imagine how much more open the floor space on your 8×12 portable shed will be if you could store things in the roof area!

8x12 barns and sheds pa

3. Add Shelves to your 8×12 Shed

So, now we have the height thing figured out, let’s consider more things we can do to help make more space in a small 8×12 portable shed.

Shelving is the next thing you can do to keep the floor area of your 8×12 shed open and accessible. You know how it is (or you’ll soon find out), even if you have a much larger shed like a 12×16 storage shed or a 10×20 shed before you know it, the floor is utterly cluttered with stuff here and there (I’ve been there…or should I say, I am there?)

Adding shelves along the wall takes away some of the interior space, but it gives you much more than it takes away. You can add narrow 12” shelves along one wall at 16” intervals and really increase the organization of your 8×12 storage shed. If you’re going with a larger shed, you might even consider a full second floor like you will find in the Legacy Two Story Sheds here.

where to buy an 8x12 shed

Alright, now we figured out what we can fit inside an 8×12 backyard shed and we discussed how to increase the interior space in the building with higher walls, a roof design with more interior space and shelving.

Lastly, I’d like to introduce you to four of my favorite 8×12 sheds that have been built by Sheds Unlimited.

Are you ready?


We love this little 8×12 Premier Garden Shed and think it adds a very nice touch to this backyard. The shed includes a 4’ shed dormer which (besides adding a bit more space), just makes it look like…well, amazing! Another brilliant idea this customer had was to add more windows. Notice the windows above the 4’ Doors? They bring in extra light. BTW: The Premier Garden Sheds actually include four of those windows as a standard feature. Check out the interior of this shed so well organized with a loft and even garden tools hanging from the rafters (I guess we missed that as an idea of adding more space to your 8×12 shed!). The 4’ doors on the gable end make this shed very accessible and the abundance of windows give it a bright interior. As far as the exterior ground around your shed, you may want to check out this article to learn more about shed landscaping and transforming the ground around your shed.

8x12 outdoor garden sheds pa 0


Ok, I tried to find a photo of an 8×12 Premier Dutch Barn but was not successful. So I settled for this 10×12 Portable Barn that towers above almost any other 8×12 shed at Sheds Unlimited! Notice the high walls combined with a very high roofline. This means you will have a lot of interior space to store stuff so you can keep the floor area of your 8×12 shed clear. If you chose to buy the 8×12 Dutch Barn, I would highly recommend adding a 4’ loft with a step ladder so you can make more space and keep access to the area easy. An 8×12 Dutch Barn would make a great photography studio shed since you could store a lot of stuff in a limited amount of space.

10x12 dutch barn vinyl shed
8x12 storage sheds with loft


Can we even call this a shed? Truly, an 8×12 Modern Shed is an edgy idea! It takes the typical lean-to-shed idea and creates a uniquely contemporary shed that you can look at with delight. Don’t miss other examples of Modern Sheds including our modern pool houses, modern office spaces, and much more.

8x12 modern prefabricated sheds in md

Ok, now that we’ve talked about what you can expect from your 8×12 storage shed, go ahead and find the one that pleases you most. Before you go ahead and purchase though, you might also want to read about how you can keep your shed cool during those summer months.

Or shop the discounted sheds and you might be lucky to find the one that will fit your taste and style perfectly!

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