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When you think of a greenhouse, what comes to mind? A lush garden with all the fresh produce that you could ever need? Growing your own plants year-round without worrying about frost or other weather problems? If this sounds like something that would benefit your family then read on! In this blog post, we will discuss how to plan for and construct a backyard greenhouse. You’ll also learn whether or not you can have one in your backyard.

In most cases, you can build a greenhouse on your property with very little hassle. However, if it is near any public space or roadways then the municipality may have strict regulations for architecture and building which could require permits to be filed (with filing fees).

With all that said let’s look into a little more detail at licensing and planning a greenhouse in your backyard.

Do I Need a License or Permit for a Greenhouse?

In most rural areas it is similar to adding a shed to your backyard. Which is an auxiliary building and no permission or permits are generally needed.

The exception to this is if the greenhouse will be visible from a public roadway or sidewalk. In that case, you may need an encroachment permit and/or approval by your local government before construction can commence.

The closer you are to a big city the tougher the codes seem to be. Ultimately the local planning department will have the final say.

To be on the safe side, check with your local government before you start building.

I wish there was a one-size-fits-all answer, but unfortunately, it depends on where in the country you are and what my town’s zoning regulations are like!

It is not worth spending out money on a greenhouse if your municipalities will not allow it. There are a few towns in my area that have an outright ban on greenhouses. So check out the local planning and see if it is allowed before starting your project.

Zoning and Building Regulations for Your Greenhouse

There are two main things you need to consider when looking for permission zoning and building.

Both the zoning and building rules are generally set statewide however zoning guidelines are city determined. Where a building is a county-wide department that deals with the issue.

If you have a planning community then it is worth checking out what your zoning regulation is and see if you’re allowed the type of building that will house a greenhouse.

The zoning ordinances refer more to the height and type of structure you can have. The building regulations are more about what the walls should be constructed out of, how many floors there will need to build etc.

Installing a greenhouse is much more simple as they tend to fall within the residential category. The complications come from building houses so a greenhouse should be plain sailing.

Help With Permits and Licenses for Greenhouse Construction

If you are buying your greenhouse from a reputable buyer then you shouldn’t have any issues with permits and licenses. The construction company will be taking care of this for you or point you in the right direction. 

If you are self-building your greenhouse then contact your local building department. They have a variety of different licenses for people to comply with which will depend on the size, type, and location you would like your greenhouse in relation to.

In most cases, all that is needed is consent from neighbors if it’s going up close to their property.

You are going to do more work if you are closer to the city where someone in a rural area would not have to do as much.

Costs of Starting Construction on Your Greenhouse

You will need a building permit for example which can cost from $500 up and that is just one component of your total costs. So it’s always a good idea when going into this project, be sure to have all those things in mind. Before getting started on construction because if not then there might be some additional expenses to incur.

The other thing you’re going to need is a permit from the municipality and this may or might be charged based on what zone your property will land under. For example, if it falls within an agricultural area then they typically do charge. But again there are some exceptions so always check with them before starting any construction.

Other Things To Consider

A greenhouse is not all about planning and the costs there are some more things that you need to consider before jumping in. 

Reason For A Greenhouse

The first thing to think about is the reason for getting a greenhouse in the first place. There are many reasons to have a greenhouse, but you need at least one reason before deciding that this is something worth doing for your property and budget.

Getting into this mindset will allow you better chose the style of greenhouse you want to get and the size. If you are looking for a greenhouse to grow food, then it’s probably best that your initial choice is one with more shelving options. Or space towards this end of things in general. So think about what type of crops will be grown in your greenhouse.

The other thing we need from our greenhouses is insulation. The better insulated it will be, the less energy we’ll need to maintain your plant’s needs and care for them. The things you will grow will have a better chance of growing, and in turn, you’ll have a better yield. Will you need insulation for the types of things you will grow?

Greenhouse Glazing

The type of glassing you choose will have a big impact on the overall cost of your greenhouse. You need to make sure that you are using the right type of glass for its purpose, which will be determined by climate and size

The types available: 

  • Standard Glass (low cost),
  • Greenhouse Grade Low-E Coated Window Film with AR coating – a good balance between quality but without breaking the bank. 
  • Double Pane Insulated Glass (highest cost).

Greenhouse Grade Low-E Coated Window Film with AR coating is the best option in most cases. This allows for excellent light transmission, and has an added argon gas layer which provides additional insulation as well! It also protects against ultraviolet rays and infrared light, which can both deteriorate the plants inside of your greenhouse.

The type and thickness will depend on what you are building. Bigger structures require thicker glass in order to hold up better against wear and utilize energy more efficiently than smaller ones! The average cost ranges from $30-$80 per square foot for a good quality greenhouse glass.

Don’t forget if you have children playing around the greenhouse, it will need to be made of a material that is child-safe.

If you’re worried about your children touching the glass, polycarbonate or acrylic are both good options! Polycarbonates can also have an anti-scratch coating applied if necessary for added protection against damage and accidents from pets as well – so don’t forget those costs when you are budgeting your project.

Style of Greenhouse

There are two common styles of greenhouses that you can choose from:

Attached Lean-to Greenhouse

A greenhouse is attached to the side of your house. This style is great because it doesn’t take up a lot of space and can be used for an array of different purposes! With this kind, you’ll need at least four feet (or more depending on what size they are) between where their foundation will go against any other part or structure outside of the greenhouse.

This style is great for -Growing plants, flowers, and vegetables-Sowing seeds of new plant varieties (or any other type) to see what grows best in your area. 

Standalone Greenhouse

A standalone greenhouse is a more popular choice for many because it can be built in any shape or size. This style of greenhouses is preferred by people who want to do larger-scale gardening and food production. As well as the ones with kids that need space outside but still inside their home! These types come completely from the bottom up so there’s no need to worry about the foundation.

A standalone greenhouse would be great for growing a large variety of plants, flowers, and vegetables; sowing seeds from different plant varieties (or other types).

The size needed is determined by the number of plants that are going to be grown, as well as what type they’ll need

Greenhouse Site Location 

The closer to your house the greenhouse is located the more you are going to use your greenhouse. You also need to think about the amount of sun needed for the plants.

I would always recommend finding the sunniest place in your yard for the greenhouse. That’s going to help with everything from how well your plants will grow, and also what you’ll be able to have inside of them!

The location that you have will have a big bearing on the size of your greenhouse.

Greenhouse Strength Against Weather

If you live somewhere that gets server weather conditions like windstorms or hurricanes, you are going to want a very strong and sturdy greenhouse.

The reason for this is that when there’s a windstorm the last thing on your mind should be worrying about if something has fallen over inside of it! You’ll also need one with thicker walls.

You can buy greenhouse anchors so you can anchor your greenhouse to the ground. Or one reinforced by metal braces. You could also buy frames for your greenhouse which come in many different sizes and shapes.

Greenhouses are made to be strong against weather conditions like windstorms so it’s important you make sure this is taken into consideration when purchasing yours! 

FAQ’s About Backyard Greenhouses

There are some common questions about backyard greenhouses and we have taken them and given each a quick simple answer. 

Can you build a greenhouse in your backyard?

Gardening enthusiasts now have the opportunity to grow their plants in a controlled environment, and be able to monitor them so they can produce better. You could choose from any of these types: mini-greenhouse, small greenhouse, or even an industrial-sized barn that you will need for your purposes.

Do I need permission for a greenhouse?

In some cases, you can build a greenhouse on your property without anyone’s permission. Some municipalities however have strict regulations on permanent structures and it may require filling out forms (with filing fees) or applying for licenses before construction begins. Make sure to look into any local rules beforehand!

Where should I put a greenhouse in my yard?

The best spot for a greenhouse is on the sunny side of your house. If that doesn’t work, try building it near one corner or along an east-facing wall where you can still get plenty of sun during the winter months (November to February).

How much does a backyard greenhouse cost?

The national average cost for a backyard greenhouse is around $10,000. A person can expect to spend anywhere from $5,000-$20,000 on construction with most people paying at the higher end of that range (around 10′ x 40′).

Is it cheaper to build or buy a greenhouse?

When it comes to assembling a greenhouse, you’re better off buying one than trying to build your own. Sure, some people may be able to find an old house window or plastic sheeting for free but the time and effort that goes into figuring out what materials are needed can cost more in the long run when building on this scale at home.

Building your own might save money upfront if you buy all of the necessary supplies from scratch but there is also no telling how much work will need to be done after assembly such as adding insulation or replacing broken panes with new glass windows before any plants grow inside!

Is it worth getting a greenhouse?

A greenhouse is a great investment. You’ll be able to grow whatever you want in the winter, and can enjoy fresh vegetables all year round from your own garden!

Is a small greenhouse worth it?

A greenhouse is a great way to grow your own vegetables and herbs year-round without heating bills or garden maintenance. It blocks the harsh sun, making it perfect for indoor gardening even if there’s snow on the ground outside!

Do greenhouses need to be in full sun?

A greenhouse must get a lot of sunlight to thrive. You should locate your greenhouse so that it does not receive any shadows from trees or buildings, and preferably in an area where there is no shade at all. In really bright areas like high altitude places. You may want to provide some partial light for plants with different needs than full sun varieties since the intense heat can be damaging over time.