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sheds must adhere to new state building code
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- May 9, 2002 -- New homes aren't the only properties affected by Florida's statewide building code that went into effect on
March 1. Everything from storage sheds to agricultural storage buildings must
also follow the new rules.
And while some manufacturers of prefab sheds and buildings have changed their
designs to adhere to the code, some have not.
Smaller preassembled sheds -- those under 720-square feet -- are addressed
under their own rule in the building code, according to Rick Dixon, a spokesman
for the Florida Building Commission. Dixon says that the sheds must carry an insignia that
certifies state approval; if they do not, local building departments can't
Do-it-yourself shed kits are the exception to the mandatory-sticker rule, and Dixon adds that it can be difficult to tell if they adhere
to the state building code or not.
"We have had discussions with one or two (manufacturers), who are in the
process of getting that done, who were caught off guard in the change of the
code," Dixon says.
For homeowners, this can make it more difficult -- and probably more expensive
-- to add storage space by building a shed. In some areas, local building
departments, using the building code as a weapon, now require a registered
architect or engineer to sign off on new sheds before they'll even issue a
The problem may ease after Oct. 1, 2003, though it won't make sheds any less expensive.
After that date, all preassembled sheds must be approved by the state, meaning
they must meet wind speed requirements and, if applicable, electrical
guidelines. The guidelines are a bit less rigid than those applied to a
residential home, however, since no one lives inside a storage shed.
"You might wind up with a lot of stored materials blowing around in your
yard, but typically it wouldn't pose the danger to people that there would be
in a house," says Dixon.
Glenn Caudill, chief executive officer of Ted's Sheds Inc., headquartered in Fort Myers, says that his company's sheds now meet the new code
thanks to about a year of testing and an eventual seal of approval from the
Florida Department of Community Affairs. Now, the sheds can withstand wind
speeds up to 150 miles per hour. To bring the sheds up to code, a fastening
system uses galvanized hurricane clips to secure floor joists and the floor
ties that connect to the floor joists. Corner posts, connected to the roof
trusses with a steel strap, have 2-by-4-inch studs with 1/2-inch plywood