Mid-Century Modern Rooms and Sheds an

FAQs

How do I get started?

First, look over our models and options. Think about what you would like to include in your plan. Next, check your backyard. You will need a patch of ground approximately 15' x 20'.

You will need to know the local requirements of your city or county, or your home owners association, in regard to room size allowed (as long as it is not permanently inhabited as a bedroom), how far it needs to be from your house and your property line, and the maximum height allowed.

Our room/shed is classified as an "accessory building." If you need help with understanding regulations, or obtaining permits in the case of larger structures, we can help. Sometimes a small fee is required which is refunded against your purchase.

Next, call or email us about your project. If we need to make a site visit, it will most likely be free, depending on the distance and the complexity of the project. Once we take your order the lead time for fabrication is about two to three weeks. The installation on your property will take about one week.

We require a deposit of 50% upon placing the order and the balance due after installation. We will be glad to help you arrange financing if needed.

Give us a call at 707 227-4336 or send us an email at info@backyardeichlers.com. We will be happy to discuss your plans and schedule a visit to inspect your building site.

Do you provide the foundation?

The foundation is primarily your responsibility, because the type of foundation needed depends upon the slope of your site and the size of your structure.

However, we provide a simple foundation with pressure-treated 4x4's to be used as skids. These are rated for contact with the ground or concrete. For minor leveling, we use 2x16 solid concrete blocks. The Backyard Eichler is heavy and will not move or shift except under the most extreme conditions, such as a powerful earthquake. 

There are a number of more permanent options, including concrete slab, concrete block foundation, pier blocks, post and concrete, and gravel foundations. For a fee of $100 we will come to your home and consult with you on the best foundation for your site and the related cost. This fee will be refunded when you make your order.

Will I need a permit?

For most local ordinances and codes, buildings that are 120 square feet or less and not used as a permanent bedroom are categorized as an "accessory building" and do not need a permit or a permanent foundation. Set-backs do apply. It is your responsibility to check with your local planning department and your HOA for their policies.

Can I order a Backyard Eichler larger than 120 square feet?

We offer custom buildings larger than 120 square feet. For these structures, or if permanent plumbing or electrical is desired, you will need a permit and scheduled inspections. You can apply for these as a homeowner or we can do the process for a fee. We will provide any necessary drawings needed for your permit for a fee.

Can I live in a Backyard Eichler?

The laws in most municipalities require a building permit and electricity for a room that is used for permanent residency. However, in most areas an "accessory building" of 120 square feet or less can be put on your property without a permit. In most cases you can use this room for an office, studio, or even an occasional spare room for guests. It is your responsibility to know the allowed uses in your locality. If you wish to build under a permit, we will be happy to help you with that procedure for a fee.

Do you install electricity?

No, although we have licensed electricians that we can recommend. A permit will be needed. Your electrician can obtain the permit or you can do so as a homeowner. This permit is usually not very expensive.

We offer an optional electrical post with a luan wood surface that can be oiled, stained, or painted. It attaches to the wall inside the structure and contains a UL approved double outlet and a switch, with wiring at the bottom and top. We also supply an exterior receptacle box. The  wiring can be easily connected to lights and to your power source through the side or bottom of the house. This option costs $875.

What is a panelized kit?

Our kits are made of wall, roof, and floor panels that are light enough to be handled by two people. There will be packets of numbered trim pieces, most of them pre-cut and pre-drilled. Windows and doors are included, and panels have cut-outs for each window or door. Selected flooring and roofing materials are included, as is the necessary hardware.

A detailed assembly manual comes with your kit. The kit will be delivered by a lift-gate truck to your curbside location as a packed pallet, ready for you to carry in sections to the backyard. We are always available for construction questions.

Does my Backyard Eichler include a finished interior?

We install standard sheetrock siding. The ceiling is finished plywood, or optional 2" x 6" tongue and groove pine as in your original Eichler house for $950 extra. We can paint, stain, or clear finish the interior for approximately $1,500. For other interior wall treatments and for flooring options, please go to Materials/Options.

Do you paint the exterior?

We will paint, stain, or finish the exterior of your Backyard Eichler for about $1,400. We offer 25 approved Eichler paint and stain colors, and many trim options.

How can I build a Backyard Eichler myself?

We sell a panelized kit with written instructions for you or your contractor. The panels screw together quite easily, but the foundation, trim, and interior elements must be level and plumb. There are close tolerances involved.

It will present an adventure of several days that is quite rewarding if you are up to it. If you have not done anything like this before and would like us to make a site visit (in the San Francisco Bay Area) we charge $100 per visit for the first one and a half hours. Phone consultations up to a total of one hour are free while you are building. Our warranty does not apply if you build it yourself, other than for defective materials or components delivered by us.

Can you customize my Backyard Eichler or work with other designs?
 
Yes, we are happy to work with you to create a unique building to suit your taste. In fact, most of our installations are customized. The costs vary according to the complexity of the project. Just call us to begin the discussion. 

How do I heat or cool my Backyard Eichler?

All of our units are well insulated and will not need much heating or cooling. Small electrical heaters or small window air conditioners will be more than adequate. If no electricity is available, a Kero-Sun kerosene heater works well and can be ventilated out the side window.

How do you charge for shipping or transportation?

Our panelized kits can be picked up in San Rafael or we can deliver them in the Bay Area. Call for quote.

For installations more than 20 miles from San Rafael, we add a surcharge for transportation costs to and from the worksite. 



What are your payment terms?

We accept payments by check or major credit card. We require a $5,000 initial payment, with two milestone payments and a final payment upon completion and final walk-through.

For a pre-assembled kit, the balance will be due before shipping. Tax and shipping cost will be included. For full installation, the balance is due upon completion 

Do you offer a warranty?

We provide a five-year warranty against defects in all materials and workmanship when installed directly by us. We offer a ten-year warranty on our roofing when installed by us.

We address any problems promptly. We are committed to providing you with exactly what you contracted for and meeting your expectations for excellent service. We want you to be a satisfied customer.
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