Garden Building Features & Benefits to Consider

Adding a garden building to your outdoor space can provide a versatile area for relaxing, working, exercising, or pursuing hobbies. There are many design factors and amenities to decide on. 

Consider how you’ll use the space as well as your lifestyle needs when planning a new garden building. Here are some key garden building features and options to explore.

Bi-Fold Doors for Garden Buildings

Bi-fold doors are a popular choice for garden buildings and outdoor spaces. These doors feature panels that fold accordion-style to provide large openings.

Compared to standard doors, bi-fold doors offer advantages like greater flexibility and expansive openings for garden buildings. The folding panels can customise airflow and light based on weather and needs. 

Fully retracting the panels creates wide unobstructed views and access to exterior gardens and patios. This indoor-outdoor flow helps extend the outdoors aesthetically into the garden building.

The multi-panel folding design also provides a contemporary, minimalist look compared to other door styles. This modern aesthetic suits many garden building designs.

Some key benefits of bi-fold doors for enhancing garden spaces include:

  • Connecting interior garden buildings seamlessly to exterior gardens, patios and greenery.
  • Blurring the lines between indoors and outdoors when fully opened.
  • Allowing control over natural light and fresh breezes flowing into the garden building.
  • Providing wide unobstructed views of outdoor areas, landscapes and gardens.
  • Enabling smooth transitions and continuity of experience between indoor room and outdoor areas.

Skylights for Garden Buildings

Skylights are a highly recommended feature for garden buildings to allow abundant natural light. Unlike standard roofs, skylights transform ceilings into sunlight portals that brighten up interior spaces beautifully.

For garden buildings, skylights offer benefits like:

  1. Enhanced Natural Light – Skylights flood rooms with natural sunlight, creating brighter and more uplifting spaces compared to relying solely on artificial lighting. This illumination highlights and enhances interior gardens and greenery, fostering a vibrant and inviting atmosphere.
  2. Aesthetic appeal – Skylights add architectural interest and dimension to rooms. The daylight creates a more dynamic lighting mood that changes throughout the day.
  3. Customizable sizes and styles – Skylights come in many sizes, shapes and styles to suit any garden building aesthetic – from sleek, modern designs to classic domed styles.

Skylights are a smart design choice to create bright, naturally-lit garden buildings with closer connections to outdoor light and air. The right skylight can take a garden building from ordinary to extraordinary and are a great inspiration.

Roof Styles for Garden Buildings

There are two popular options:

Flat Roofs

Flat roofs have several advantages for garden buildings such as:

  • Modern, minimalist look – Flat roofs fit with contemporary or industrial-style garden buildings.
  • Flexible ceiling height – Flat roofs allow height adjustments to the ceiling without impacting the roof. This accommodates features like skylights and fans.
  • Additional outdoor space – A flat roof can act as a roof terrace, providing extra outdoor area.
  • Blend with low-lying architecture – Flat roofs integrate well with ranch-style homes or single-story extensions.
  • Cost-effective – Flat roofs tend to be simple and more budget-friendly to construct compared to pitched roofs.

Pitched Roofs

Meanwhile, pitched roofs offer benefits like:

  • Complement traditional architecture – Pitched roofs blend seamlessly with existing homes that have gable or hip roofing.
  • Increased height – The angled shape provides higher ceilings, creating a more spacious, airy interior.
  • Distinct visual appeal – Pitched roofs add striking architectural interest, giving garden buildings a unique character.
  • Weather resistant – The angled shape allows water, snow and debris to easily slide off the roof.
  • Additional storage space – The open attic space can provide room for storage.

Garden Buildings with Verandas and Decking

A key advantage of garden buildings is their ability to integrate interior spaces with the outdoors. Two excellent ways to accomplish this are by incorporating verandas and/or decking into the garden building design. These outdoor living spaces seamlessly connect to the interior garden building in complementary ways.

Verandas and decking both enable garden building enjoyment to extend beyond walls, supporting a smooth indoor-outdoor transition. They expand the usable square footage as well. But verandas and decking each offer their distinct benefits for enhancing garden buildings through outdoor living areas.


Attached verandas expand the usable space of garden buildings through covered, semi-enclosed outdoor areas:

  • Protection from weather – Veranda roofs provide shade and shelter from rain, sun, or snow. 
  • Indoor-outdoor transitional zone – A veranda serves as a middle ground between the garden building interior and the exposed exterior surroundings.
  • Multipurpose space – Verandas can be furnished and used in many ways, as a lounge area, greenhouse, grill zone, or just additional space to enjoy the outdoors.
  • Architectural flair – Verandas adds visual drama and dimension while complementing the overall home’s style.
  • Value added – Garden building and rooms with verandas often boost a home’s value and appeal.


Decking offers an open-air way to extend garden buildings:

  • Seamless flow – Decks directly adjoin and connect to garden buildings through patio doors, supporting a smooth indoor-outdoor transition.
  • Interactive gardens – Decking lets users step right into garden beds, creating an immersive experience with the greenery.
  • Entertaining space – Decks can provide space for outdoor dining, parties, or lounging near the garden.
  • Durable and low-maintenance – Modern composites resist weather and require little upkeep compared to wood decks.

Garden Buildings with Heating and Air Conditioning

As transitional spaces between fully interior and exterior areas, maintaining comfortable temperatures in garden buildings typically requires supplemental heating and cooling solutions. 

Since garden buildings are often detached or semi-detached from the main house, they cannot rely entirely on the existing central HVAC systems. 

Planning for temperature control features specifically tailored for warming and cooling garden building spaces is essential for maximising year-round use and enjoyment.

Heating Options

Several effective heating systems for garden buildings:

  • Electric radiators – Provide zone heating and can be wall-mounted or freestanding. Cost-effective to install.
  • Hydronic heating – Involves piping hot water through radiators or underfloor systems. Provides even, efficient warmth.
  • Gas heaters – Freestanding gas units offer focused heating. Ventilation requirements must be met.
  • Wood stoves – Provide localised ambiance and warmth. Needs proper ventilation.

Key heating considerations include room size, target temperature, budget, and integration with the main house system.

Air Conditioning

Cooling options to keep garden buildings comfortable in warmer months:

  • Split ductless systems – Effective for garden buildings. The compressor mounts outdoors while wall-mounted fan units go inside.
  • Central systems – Can tie the garden building into the main home’s HVAC system and ductwork.
  • Ceiling fans – Provide air circulation and cooling effects without full AC. Cost-effective option.
  • Windows – Opening windows creates passive cooling. External shade structures also help block sunlight.

Garden Buildings with WiFi 

Adding WiFi and internet connectivity enables productivity and entertainment in garden buildings. With more people working remotely or using garden spaces as home offices, WiFi is becoming an increasingly desirable feature.

There are a few options for bringing wireless internet to garden buildings:

  • WiFi extenders – These devices amplify your existing home WiFi signal to reach the garden building. Positioning the extender in a central area between the main house and the garden building provides the best coverage.
  • Powerline adapters – Using existing electrical wiring, these devices transmit a network signal through the power outlets. Adapters connect wirelessly to devices.
  • Outdoor wireless access points – These commercial-grade access points are weather-proofed for outdoor installation. They provide a strong dedicated wireless network specifically for the garden building.
  • Running ethernet cables – For a hardwired option, outdoor-rated ethernet cables can directly connect the garden building to your home network.

Key factors in planning WiFi for garden buildings include room size, building materials, budget, type of usage, and integration with smart home systems. Reliable wireless connectivity enables garden buildings to serve as flexible spaces for recreation, work, or entertaining.

Garden Buildings with Kitchenettes and Bathrooms

Incorporating small kitchenettes and bathroom spaces into garden building designs provides added functionality, convenience, and benefits. These amenities reduce the need to go back inside the main home.

Kitchenette Options for Garden Buildings

Kitchenettes allow basic food and beverage preparation within the garden building itself. Potential features to consider include:

  • Compact counter space and cabinetry for food prep – Allows washing, chopping, and serving food and drinks right in the garden building.
  • Small sink for cleaning and washing – Enables quick clean up without going inside
  • Mini fridge for cold drinks and snacks – Provides chilled refreshments at your fingertips
  • Microwave oven for heating food – Allows quick reheating of meals in the garden building
  • Electric kettle for making coffee/tea – Offers an easy way to enjoy hot beverages outdoors
  • Storage for cutlery, cups, and essentials – Keeps supplies organised and close by
  • Wine fridge for chilled wine and beverages – Perfect for storing wine at serving temperature
  • Recycle bins for sorting waste – Supports sustainability and easy cleanup

Bathroom Features in Garden Building Designs

Likewise, a small bathroom or half-bath extends the usability and convenience of the garden building:

  • Basic toilet and sink for just restroom needs – Provides privacy and avoids going back inside
  • Small stand-up shower stall for washing up – Allows quick rinses after exercising or swimming
  • Compact vanity with mirror for freshening up – Enables easy grooming and getting ready
  • Extractor fan and heated towel rail for comfort – Creates a pleasant and comfortable bathroom environment
  • Underfloor heating for warmth on floors – Adds cosy warmth for bare feet on chilly mornings
  • Fold-down changing table for poolside rooms – Allows easy swimsuit changes after pool time

The en-suite bathroom makes the garden building fully self-sufficient for long-term use or overnight guests.

Atmosphere: Fireplaces and Underfloor Heating

Creating an inviting ambiance is key to maximising the enjoyment of your garden building space. Two features that can enhance the atmosphere with warmth and cosiness are fireplaces and underfloor heating systems.

Cosy Additions: in Garden Buildings with Fireplaces

A fireplace can transform a garden building into a warm, inviting retreat. The gentle flicker of flames and radiant heat create a cosy ambiance that extends the usability of the space through cooler seasons. Fireplaces also provide architectural interest, acting as stylish focal points that elevate the room’s design.

For indoor-outdoor living, exterior doors or bi-fold options allow you to enjoy the fireplace from adjoining patios or decks. Fireplace options like wood-burning, gas, or electric models offer different installation requirements, heating capabilities, and fuel costs to suit your needs.

Garden Buildings with Underfloor Heating 

Underfloor heating systems discreetly and efficiently warm garden buildings from the ground up. These systems operate using less energy than wall heaters while producing little air movement to circulate dust and allergens. 

Underfloor heating seamlessly integrates with various flooring options like tile, stone, laminate, and even carpets installed on top. It can serve as supplemental heating or the primary heat source for garden buildings.

Final Thoughts

Think of your garden building as an extension of your unique lifestyle. Design it to perfectly match your evolving needs. This allows the space to adapt and grow alongside you.

Embrace all the possibilities a garden building offers. Let it become an example of achieving the ideal balance between indoor luxury and outdoor beauty, where the boundaries seem to disappear.

As you spend time in this harmonious sanctuary, you’ll experience the restorative power of nature while enjoying the comforts of a carefully designed living area. Seize this opportunity to elevate your living experience by creating a space that truly resonates with you.