Here I am sitting in my pod/garden office in my garden thinking thats a headline I never thought I would write.
Nothing has changed. Alright who am I kidding? Everything has changed.
I’m used to working from home i’ve done it for a long time now.
This post is about how lucky i’ve been and why I decided to kit myself out with my own garden office.
Last year (2019), I decided I needed a space to work. My house is fairly small and I have two children who require a fair amount of space and like to play with wires. I noticed a lot of companies were gradually allowing their employees to work from home and I wanted to make my home office as comfortable as possible.
I investigated the options.
There were loads of choices.
I could have a metal, wood, plastic, glass building. I could spend anything from £500 to £20,000.
This wasn’t going to be as easy as I thought.
Do I build it myself? Do I get a company in to build it for me?
I emailed about 20 companies asking about :
- Sizes of garden buildings.
- Environmental impact.
I tried to think of everything that I would need to be comfortable in all weather conditions.
A lot of the buildings came in packs ready for me to build, if I wanted to do it myself.
I was in a dilemma, I was about to lose my workspace in our spare room due to having a second child.
I wanted something quickly.
Most of the companies who could build a garden office for me, didn’t have time to accommodate my requirements and some said it would take two weeks to build. I may have to wait 3-4 months.
Nearly all of the companies I approached said I would require hard standing area to place the building on. I didn’t want to lay a patio, that was an extra expense and would take a lot more time to organise.
I looked at wooden constructed, single glazed, flat roofed buildings that would provide me with an outside area to work. Most of the solutions I looked at, looked quite cold and uncomfortable.
Then I found YRPod.
Dan advertised on EBay and his response to my enquiry was quick and he had a great environmentally friendly approach and most importantly he could install a great, insulated garden office in three days.
Dan started by sending me some plans.
Dan planned to use ground spikes straight into the ground suspending the garden office, above the ground so there was no requirement for a stable base, no patio required!
I could work and earn cash from home and babies screaming would not be an issue. Perfect!
I started by clearing the ground.
I did feel bad about getting rid of the shrubs and a small tree but as I didn’t have much space in my garden I had to remove them. I used stakes and some bags of sharp sand to mark out the area (three by two metre) where I wanted the building to go.
The Hard Work
After I had cleared the area, Dan arrived to do the hard bit. Building the pod. It took him three days.
First installing the base. That was nine metal ground screws and a treated wooden frame covered in a waterproof membrane.
Building the Garden Office
Dan got to work on the rest of the pod.
The main construction utilises 45mm thick wooden interlocking solid construction for the main pod. This keeps it cool all year round and warm in the winter. I did put my own heating in. I’ll talk about that later.
19mm thick floorboards with underfloor insulation.
The roof is bitumen felt hex tiles over a layer of insulation.
Toughened double glazed wooden framed windows and door were installed.
Here are some pics of the build.
Once the build was watertight we installed power from an outside extension. I buried the cable in conduit under the patio and round the side of the pod to the back of the pod and brought it up through the floor sealing around it with expandable foam.
I deposited gravel around the outside of the pod for decoration and to help drainage.
I treated the pod with Ronseal waterproofing treatment to preserve the wood.
I sealed round any small gaps with clear silicone sealant.
I varnished the pod floor to protect it and then I installed some rubberised black panels that I purchased from Halfords that fitted perfectly without any adjustment.
Then I moved some kit into the pod. A desk (I already had) and my computer equipment.
I purchased an ethernet over power line adapter with a wifi access point built into it to provide connectivity.
I bought myself a new chair.
I added a floor runner and a door mat.
For heating I added an electric ceramic heater under my desk.
During the winter I have a bio ethanol heater that runs on pure ethanol. It isn’t the cheapest form of heating to run but it warms the pod up nicely.
Dan left some extra wood after the install and I bought some legs off ebay and sanded the extra wood to create myself two nice desks.
The Finished Office /POD
For increased lighting at night I added a small desk lamp and an overhead LED strip light with PIR detection.
Then I covered the windows with a mirrored film so that I didn’t need blinds.
This mirrored film is available on Ebay but be warned its incredibly hard to install. I can see out through the film but people can’t see in. Useful for working on confidential projects.
I installed the desks I built out of excess wood and some legs I purchased off Ebay.
Connected my printer.
I installed a tablet on the wall for Covid19 updates.
A place to go in all weather conditions, a “working from home” office, a really great investment.
Most crucially I am now able to function at home efficiently in my own space for the foreseeable future and it didn’t cost me the earth.