Hello, I was an active user a few years ago. Grew up with 30+ chickens and a setup that could have used improvement. Recently bought a house and am in the process of designing a new coop. 4 hens are arriving in May, and that is really all I want, especially since it is just two of us and will be for the foreseeable future. About the area. Per township rules, all coops must not be in the front yard (which is basically the entire yard) and 50' from all property lines. We are surrounded by dogs on 3 sides, 2 of which are not fenced in, but they pretty much stay in their yard. I'm expecting they will come over at the beginning, but will eventually get bored. We have snakes and stray cats that roam as well. We also have our own dog that I'm sure would kill the chickens given the chance. So, my idea is to build a coop and run under the deck. This is the space: it is (about) 7ft wide, 16ft long, and 7-8 ft tall. the deck above is covered by a roof, so we won't have to worry about that. It would open up to our fenced yard, so our plan would be to allow them to range a little before dark, when we know we wouldn't forget and accidentally let the dog out. It is right under our front door, so we need to keep the smell down. This photo was taken at 10am on a cloudy day. It would be shaded most of summer, and receive some direct sun in the winter on nice days. The ivy is going to get pulled up, and we plan on keeping on top of it. so it doesn't grow up the fence. The air conditioning in the photo is non-functioning, and we will be patching that space before the run is built. What I want/need from a setup: It needs to be easy, able to be kept dry and somewhat smell-free. Needs to be dog proof, try to prevent mice and snakes as much as possible. I'm only 5ft tall, so I need to be able to reach all parts of the coop. So, my plan, 4x5' chicken coop and a 7x12' run covered in hardware cloth floor to ceiling. There will also be a skirt along the house in the run to prevent them digging along the foundation, and a skirt along the outside on the other sides. This is my idea: I want to use a PVC chicken cup system, with pavers under it to prevent most water drips The water bucket will be outside the coop, so that is can be filled with the hose. I will use a poop board with sweet PDZ and a removable 2x4 roost for easy cleaning. Interior will be painted with a gloss latex, or (and ideally) showerboard (or also called markerboard) so I can just wipe it down. If food is outside, it will be in a metal treadle feeder to discourage mice. If inside, it will be in raised pvc feeders that prevent them flinging it everywhere, Now, where I need help. The nesting boxes will be external, but I'm trying to figure out which side to put them on. If I put them in the run, it will force me to walk in there everyday and check things out, I also have the option of gathering them from inside the coop. If outside the run, I can easily grab them, but I may get lazy and not check things out every day. If they are outside the run, the interior side can be covered in windows instead as well. So, any issues or thoughts about my planned setup?