A home is a wonderful thing to own because it is truly an investment in yourself and your personal freedom. Unlike an apartment, rented room, or living with someone else, you are free to do whatever you want with the property (assuming you follow local laws). Since the biggest asset in most people’s lives is their home, they tend to improve this when possible.
Of the many rooms in your house, you may have a preference on which one you think is most valuable. Perhaps it is the living room, where you watch TV, play games, and sit on comfy couches with relatives. Or maybe you’re a cooking aficionado, and you’ve done a bunch of work on your kitchen to make it just like a 5-star restaurant in your own home. Perhaps it’s not even a room in your home, but the outdoor space that you’ve worked so hard to cultivate with beautiful flowers and other plants. Did you ever think to make your garage one of these rooms?
With a little initiative, homeowners can tackle a garage renovation to living space. A garage that you don’t use, or is filled with clutter, can be renovated to become one of the best rooms in your house. Whether your garage is barely used for parking your car wheels or a hoarder’s paradise, it can be transformed into a spare bedroom, extra family room, or even more. As long as you’re diligent with how you’re going about it and don’t make some critical mistakes, it may just be one of the best decisions you make for your home.
What Type Of Room Can Your Garage Become?
When you’re thinking about a garage renovation to living space transition, you may be asking yourself: “what type of room can a garage even become?” It can be hard to gaze at the asphalt floors and thin walls and imagine a door with a lock being there instead of a garage door (although rest assured, you can keep the garage door if you like). This is because garages tend to be less finished than almost any other room in your house and will need a decent amount of work to be made livable. With the right amount of professionals adding their expertise to the mix, anything can happen.
A simple browse through interior design magazines will yield a whole host of interesting results that people have managed to get out of their garages. Many people take their garages and make them into spare living rooms or “man caves” for special purposes. Some families make them into spare bedrooms or guest rooms for visitors. Others take their garages and make them into steam rooms (for this, you will most definitely need a water proofing service), greenhouses, or any other high-value idea that you can think of. The choice is yours when determining what to do with your own property.
If you’re still having trouble deciding, take stock of how a garage renovation to living space conversion will help your home. Do you actually need more space, or do you simply want to add extra value to your home? Is the garage being utilized for storage, or is it being underutilized? Do you have a special appliance or item you want to install (like (pool table, hot tub, or game machines), but it won’t fit in your current living space? By answering these questions, you’ll narrow down what your garage can be and help yourself start asking the questions about what it has the potential to become.
How A Garage Conversion Adds Value To Your Home
You may be hesitant to initiate a garage renovation to living space conversion because you don’t know if it will add value to your home. This is a nuanced and debatable conversation that is different for each home, but is almost always a “yes.” By improving your garage and converting it into a living space, you’ll add value to the garage and therefore add value to your home. A basic argument goes like this: have you ever met someone that had a plumber over to install a bathroom or spare refrigerator in their garage? And while it may seem silly, didn’t that make their garage just a bit more appealing than the auto storage unit it usually is for most people’s homes?
By planning your garage renovation to living space conversion with grace and style, you can actually improve the value of your overall home. Just like how re-paving your driveway with the help of asphalt paving contractors can make the drive up to your home look more appealing, finishing and molding your garage to fantastic expectations can do the same thing. When most people go through the door to enter a garage, they expect concrete floors and that same dusty smell that we associate with such a place. But imagine if instead they happened upon a full, finished and carpeted room, with a wet bar and a pool table front and center. You’d think a bit differently!
In the same vein, making your garage into a spare bedroom or guest room will increase the bedroom count of your house. This is very attractive on the open housing market and will only make your home more likely to sell. Just like how landscaping can add as much as 14% to your home’s resale value, a garage renovation can do the same. If you plan the garage renovation to living space transition correctly, nobody even really needs to know that the room was ever a garage in the first place. It can be so seamless and well transitioned that it will look like it has been there all along, just another part of the house.
Once you’re garage has been finished and up to spec, consider hiring interior painting services to make it shine just like a normal room. Even if it’s not going to be a bedroom or anything special, having paint on the walls takes it out of the domain of a normal garage and puts it firmly in the domain of “living space” in many people’s eyes. Since most garage walls are cinder block or wood, having a blue walled garage can be a mental game changer and is well worth considering. By asking an interior designer for their recommendation on color choices, you can even maximize the space for “looks” when it is physically small.
Before You Start Knocking Down Walls, Consider This
If you’ve decided to begin construction on your garage renovation to living space conversion, then you’re in an exciting time. Your formerly drab garage may now become anything that you want it to be and add seemingly limitless value to your life. But before you burst out the champagne and start the dance music, remember that quality construction and dedicated professionals will be your biggest asset. It is therefore imperative that you know how “finished” your garage is and how it is different than other rooms in your house.
For example, your garage probably doesn’t have air conditioning installed, and may be completely cut off from the house in this respect. Therefore, you’ll want to have an HVAC contractor make sure that you can even transform this space into a habitable room before you start ordering arcade game machines off of Amazon, or figuring out where to install the hot tub. If your space isn’t comfortable and habitable, it will never survive the garage renovation to living space test for most people. It will simply be a garage that has had things added onto it, and may no longer be fit for even parking cars inside.
You’ll also want to have a residential roofer take a look at the state of the roof on your garage. Attached garages may share the same roof as the house, but sometimes they’re separate units. To make the garage a habitable space, you’ll want to make sure that the roof is in the same tip-top condition that you’d expect for a bedroom or any other room in the house. While you have the roofer around, you’ll also want to make sure that any gutters you have are also in working order. The last thing you want is a guest sleeping in your new garage bedroom and getting flooded by a rainstorm!
Don’t Forget To Add These Things During Construction
So you’ve finally made it to the construction portion of your garage renovation to living space transition. Congratulations! Make sure that the exterior and interior parts of your garage are taken care of, and you don’t forget minor things that could impact your project down the line.
One of these relatively minor things is insulation for your walls and roof. Without proper insulation, even in the best climates, your garage renovation to living space conversion will become hell on Earth during the summer and freeze over in the winter. When you don’t have insulation done correctly, you will be at the mercy of the seasons. Make sure that the interior of the garage is insulated, along with the roof and other openings.
Also, plan on making sure that your plumbing and electrical work is done promptly so that if you decide to convert your garage from a “fun space” to a living space, you won’t have to do an incredible amount of work to make the transition. By routing plumbing and electrical lines in with the help of a licensed contractor, you’ll make it so that hooking up game machines, toilets, and TVs are all a breeze because the foundations for these connections will be there. Instead of having to tear up the carpet to find a suitable space to drill a drain, one will already be installed and easy to manage. Save yourself the headache and do the work beforehand!
What Can You Expect To Pay?
It is only fair to try and judge the price of what a quality garage renovation to living space conversion would cost the average homeowner. The price will depend entirely on your location, state, and the complexity of finishing your garage. To simply lay carpet down on your former concrete floor is something that could be done in an afternoon for relatively little money. But just like having asphalt paving contractors finish your driveway can cost a pretty penny, insulation and electrical wiring can also run up the cost.
Therefore, it can be worth having multiple estimates completed so that you can know before you start the project how much it has the potential to cost. Unlike renovating a room in your home, which usually has foundational elements installed, fully updating a garage into a living space is simply a different animal. Your prices, cost of materials, and more will vary widely depending on a multitude of factors.
A Garage Revonation is a Great Investment
It may also take you some time to figure out what to do with your car that was once in your garage. Parking them outside is fine in some climates, but many people feel uncomfortable leaving their car out in the open. Even having a carport will save you from things like inclement weather and hailstorms that may damage your car. This will probably be your last thing to consider unless you plan on building a new garage entirely.
At the end of the day, springing for a garage renovation to living space conversion may be one of the best things you ever do for your home. Besides adding monetary value, it can simply add life value to what was formerly a drab space that only held cars and old boxes. While you may not go inside your new room and play pool every day, it will certainly make the experience of living in your home new and different in a positive way.