A wooden summer house is so much more than a shed, yet to the uneducated they are remarkably similar. They both have four sides and a roof, they are both located in the garden, both have a door from the outside world, so what I hear you ask, is the difference? A wooden summer house is an extension to a house, a place that can be visited to relax and to entertain, not merely to store rusty tools like the garden shed.
The other main difference of course is the price, for wooden summer houses are not cheap. They cost a substantial amount of money so it's important to choose one with a design that will appeal for a number of years and also is made out material that will withstand the harshest of winters.
Regardless of whether you build your own wooden garden house or buy one in, you will probably need planning permission. Every local authority is different so depending on your location you may get lucky, but either way it pays to double check before the building begins. There would be nothing worse than wasting all that money by having to pull the summer house down on the orders of the local council.
It's important that you think off all the various factors before you start the build. Below is a list of key points to consider:
Regulations - As mentioned above, always check local building regulations with the relevant authorities.
Foundations - Regardless of size, all wooden summer houses will need foundations. This will help prevent the floor from rotting and also give it a slight elevation.
Materials - Make sure you choose a hardy wood that will not rot quickly and is not susceptible to attack from mites or similar. Western red cedar is popular, as is oak.