How to Create Storage Underneath Outdoor Stairs

What You'll Need
2x4 Boards
Exterior grade plywood
Galvanized screws
Exterior finish to match your home
Shelving (optional)

You have a great set of open outdoor stairs and you are looking for some additional storage space for some of your garden tools and other outdoor deck material. The open stairway can be the foundation for a great outdoor storage area. In fact, you can even build the outdoor storage area yourself in a matter of days. Below you will find an outlined project plan to build your convenient and useful outdoor storage solution. 

Step 1 - Prepare the Floor

Depending on where your outdoor stairs are located, you may need to first prepare the floor. There may be grass, gravel, stone or other types of uneven surfaces as the floor under the stairs. Clear the ground of any items such as toys or tools that may be laying around.

Step 2 - Add Dirt and Stone

Add a layer of dirt and a layer of stone (fine stones) to your floor. Take a level and level the stone. To create a compact stone bed you will need to bring in a tamper and tamp down the stone so that it starts to settle in place.

Step 3 - Add Pavers to the Floor

Take a trip to your local home improvement center and purchase some simple and inexpensive pavers. Lay the pavers on top of the stone bed. Kneel or walk over the pavers to make sure that they are even with one another. Make sure they do not rock from side to side. If they are not set firmly in place then you may need to reset or reposition the stone.

Step 4 - Close Off the Sides

Close off the sides of the staircase. Take a trip to the home improvement center and purchase 2x4s.  Measure from the foot of the staircase to the edge of the house and lay a 2x4 on the ground.  Anchor the 2x4 into the ground using anchors. Make sure the 2x4 edge butts up against the flooring you have just installed. Try not to leave any gaps. 

Take the remaining wood and create your frame (vertical) from the ground all the way up to the stair tread. On one side of your stairway, keep enough of an opening for a doorway. This will be your entrance into your storage area.

Step 5 - Add Plywood

Attach plywood to your frame using a screw gun and galvanized screws. Cut out the hole for your doorway.

Step 6 - Add Exterior Finish

You will want to finish your storage space with the same exterior material as your home. So, if you have a home that is finished with exterior siding, you will want to cut the siding to the right size and side both areas of your storage space. If your home is finished with exterior stucco, then you will want to apply stucco on both sides.

Step 7 - Add the Door

Add the door to your storage area with a door handle and lock.

Step 8 - Add Shelving

If desired, you can add shelving to the interior space to provide for various types of storage solutions.