Through the process of garage conversion, an attached garage can be transformed into a functional part of the house.
There are a number of considerations that need to be made before moving forwards with this plan, despite the fact that it might appear to be a simple method for increasing the number of heated square feet in your home and possibly adding a room or bathroom to the total number.
At first glance, it may appear as though increasing the square footage will result in an increase in resale value. However, before you jump to that conclusion, you should first consider the costs of the project, the return on investment, the demand for your market, and the logistics of the conversion.
In addition, many property owners are reluctant to convert their garages into living space out of the concern that doing so will ultimately result in a drop in the value of their homes.
The vast majority of people who are opposed to converting a garage are talking about poorly executed conversions that have no permits, and a quick search on Google will bring up pages of naysayers. However, there is one aspect to these claims that it is important to recognise.
A quick google search will bring up pages of naysayers. In most cases, the value of a home increases as a result of a legal garage conversion.
This type of conversion involves the completion of all required paperwork and obtaining all necessary permits, as well as ensuring that the conversion is carried out in an expert manner and is in compliance with all applicable fire codes.
Unfortunately, a lot of people do not try to find the right and legal ways to convert their garages, and it is precisely these illegal garage conversions that can hurt the resale value of a home.
Are you planning any major renovations? Check out HP Constructions Melbourne's extensive range of home renovations.
Demand for garage conversion
According to research conducted by the National Association of Realtors, more than one in four buyers considers the presence of a garage to be one of the most important features of a home.
If the conversion will be for the purpose of selling the property quickly or possibly even renting it out, then you are eliminating a sizeable portion of the potential buyers for the property. It's interesting to note that demand for garages is typically high in both urban and rural settings.
City residents are required to compete with one another for available parking spaces on the street, as well as worry about receiving parking tickets, dings and scratches, the snow plough burying their cars, and a variety of other issues.
It's quite possible that having to park off the property will be less appealing to residents than living with a smaller amount of living space. It is common for garage space in rural areas to be in high demand due to the need to store multiple cars, a variety of recreational vehicles, various types of sporting equipment, and even more.
Considerations for a garage conversion
If, after consulting a real estate agent and a licenced contractor, you come to the conclusion that the figures are reasonable for your market, you will need to give some careful consideration to a few additional important points before moving forwards with the project.
- Losing access to a garage means being exposed to the elements and possibly having to engage in a competition with other drivers for available parking spaces, even if there is a driveway or another protected parking space available. Is that the kind of concession that would be acceptable to buyers in that area?
- Check to see if there is sufficient space for storing things elsewhere in the house to accommodate all of the things that will inevitably end up being kept in the garage. You might want to rethink buying the house if it has a limited amount of storage space.
- Determine whether or not the local government and neighbourhood association even permit the conversion of garages, how much the necessary permits will cost if the conversion is permitted, and which construction requirements must be met.
- A room must have a height of at least eight feet from the finished floor to the ceiling in order for it to be considered habitable. In the event that the ceiling or roofline in the garage area is lower, you may be required to excavate the floor or raise the roof, which will result in significant additional costs.
- How will you make sure that the garage is waterproofed and drained properly if it is below the grade of the house?
- If you plan on installing a bathroom or kitchen as part of the conversion, but the garage does not already have plumbing, what are your options for installing it?
Before Converting Your Garage, Consult a Real Estate Agent, Your Local Municipality, and a Licenced Contractor.
Before deciding whether or not converting your garage is a good fit for your next investment, it is important to ensure that you will get your money's worth from the project.
This choice is much more difficult to make than, say, renovating the kitchen or replacing the air conditioning system. It is critical that a garage renovation be done well so that it appeals to the buyers, that it is permitted so that no fines are incurred or to avoid any issues at closing, and that it is cost-effective for you.
Doing all of these things will protect your return on investment.
Do Garage Conversions Add Value?
There are many different ways to define value, but one of the most important things to think about is how this undertaking might improve the quality of your life in general.
If you have a large family, you might yearn for a space where you can have some privacy, and this warm, private space might feel like it's worth a lot more than money to you.
Or, if you want your home to have a slightly more feng shui vibe, you could build a playroom for your kids so that they can keep their toys outside of the main living area.
Here are some additional perspectives on value: You are not making use of your garage to its full potential if you are not storing your vehicles there, as that was its primary function when it was first built.
Therefore, if you were to convert the space in your garage into, for example, a guest apartment for your parents, you would be creating something that is of greater value to your entire family.
It is possible that your children will be able to spend more time with their grandparents if either your parents or your spouse's parents are able to stay with you without taking up residence in your home.
Additionally, you and your in-laws would be separated by a sufficient amount of space if you slept in separate bedrooms. It's possible that we'll both come out ahead.
Ways to Use Your Converted Garage
Whether or not your garage is an attached or detached building will, to some extent, determine how you make use of the area that was formerly occupied by your vehicle storage. You might be able to convert your attached garage into a living space by converting part of it into a room.
This space could function as a recreation room, a workout room, a family room, a home theatre, an additional bedroom, a room where you can entertain friends, or something similar.
Or, if your kitchen is connected to your attached garage, you could think about expanding your kitchen into a luxurious home cook's paradise or designing the dining room of your dreams if your kitchen is connected to your attached garage.
You could convert a detached garage into a small apartment for your child, who is now a young adult; you could create an art studio that has all of the privacy that is inherent to its own building, or you could start working from the comfort of your own home and never have to leave!
Garage Conversion to Apartment
If you have made the decision to convert your garage into an apartment, whether it be for the purpose of creating a separate living space for your elderly parent or for your child who is now in college, you will want to consult with your community's planning board to determine which, if any, permits are required for the conversion. (It's important to double check whether you're planning on doing some light remodelling or a complete conversion of your garage into an apartment.)
You might want to figure out what you'll do with the things that are currently stored in your garage before you start any kind of project.
You could sort the items into one of these three categories in order to make that process as straightforward and simple as possible:
- Discard as waste
After you've gotten rid of things by throwing them away and donating them, where do you plan to put the things that are left? What kinds of things are appropriate for your basement and your attic? What steps can you take to make those areas more conducive to storage? You could put those suggestions on the list of things to consider for this home improvement project.
Do you plan to continue utilising some of your garage space as a storage area? In that case, how do you plan to section off that area so that the rest of the garage continues to have an appealing appearance?
After the conversion, if you don't want to use your garage for storage anymore, you might want to think about constructing a shed that you can use to keep the things you want to keep.
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Floors and Doors
Floors and doors are important to the completion of a successful conversion. If your garage is like most others, the floor is most likely a solid slab of concrete and there is no insulation.
And the floor of your garage might be several feet lower than the floors in the rest of your house, with a slope that leads to a floor drain or the entrance to your garage. As a consequence, floor levelling might end up being an essential component of this conversion.
After that, there is the entrance to the garage. If you get rid of it, there will be a significant amount of free space. In what way might you respond to that? Installing a patio door or building a new wall with a large bay window are both options for increasing the amount of natural light that can enter your home.
What you do could be determined by whether or not you want an entryway to be built in the space that was formerly occupied by the garage door.
Instead of trying to make do with what you already have, you could plan out where the entryways will be when you convert the space rather than making do with what you already have.
Just try to fathom how aggravating it would be to move into a brand-new, gorgeous room or apartment only to find that the door is located in the most inconvenient possible spot.
Roofing, Ventilation, and Insulation
You should check to see that the roof of your garage is completely watertight. In that case, you might need to invest in some roofing upgrades.
If you intend to instal a kitchen or bathroom in the space that was formerly your garage, ventilation concerns will likely need to be addressed. In addition, in order to make a space that is not only comfortable but even cosier, you will want to ensure that there is adequate insulation in the ceiling, the floor, the walls, and anywhere else that is required.
Windows and Walls
The appearance of your home will be more unified if you choose window styles that are similar to those already present.
In order to construct your walls, you will likely need to instal stud framing and then hang the drywall. Work on the insulation and moisture-proofing, as well as any wiring that may be present in the walls, might need to be done. What kinds of closets would you like to have in this area? It's possible that now is the best time to lay those out correctly.
Bringing in natural light is a quick and easy way to make a garage feel more like home. Because of this, you should carefully consider the size of the windows and where they should be placed.
Particularly noticeable in attached garages is a lack of cohesion caused by mismatched window treatments on both the house and the garage.
Heating, Plumbing, and Wiring
If you have a garage that is attached to your home, check to see if the HVAC system you already have can heat and cool the new space.
You might want to give some thought to how you can improve upon what you already have, such as in the wintertime by installing a floor heating system, electric baseboards, wood stoves, and other similar devices, or in the summertime by installing air-conditioning units.
When it comes to plumbing, you might need to consider how to run pipes to supply water to the garage as well as how to effectively drain the water from the garage. Both of these tasks are related to plumbing.
If you need to instal plumbing in the new space, then this could end up being one of your more significant costs.
Why convert your garage?
Converting your garage into additional living space is an efficient and inexpensive way to accomplish both the goal of increasing the amount of space in your home as well as increasing its value. Either way, converting your garage will improve your day-to-day life and result in significant capital growth in the future because the value of your conversion will rise in line with the value of your property.
Converting a single garage will add approximately 150 square feet of space while converting a double garage can deliver approximately 300 square feet of additional room.
It is highly unlikely that you will be required to obtain planning permission if the garage is attached, which means the project should go relatively smoothly. Additionally, it is not uncommon for a garage conversion to add as much as ten percent to the asking price of your house.
If you park your car on the driveway or on the street at this time, the space that was formerly wasted in your garage can be put to far better use for a variety of activities, any of which will be more productive than using it as a dumping ground for old exercise equipment, packaging cartons, and general household clutter.
If you park your car on the driveway or on the road at this time, your garage space can be put to far better use for a variety of activities.
Converting your garage into a bedroom
The addition of a bedroom is among the most common reasons for converting a garage into a liveable space. Considering the continued increase in the cost of care in residential facilities, converting a space in your home to accommodate an elderly parent enables you to provide home care to them while letting them continue to live on their own.
The costs of the conversion would quickly be offset by the money saved on care home costs. At the other end of the age spectrum, an increasing number of young professionals are looking to stay at home while they save for the down payment on their first property.
Converting your garage into a habitable space is an excellent way to give these individuals a separate area that provides them with more privacy. Converting your garage into liveable space is a simple solution to the problem of not having enough spare bedrooms for guests.
Even though it will cut into the amount of space that is actually available, it is still a good idea to incorporate an en suite bathroom or a wet room into any of these uses because it will make life easier for the people living there.
It is important to note, however, that if you add independent access to the conversion, such as a separate front door, you will almost certainly be responsible for paying an additional amount of council tax.
Converting your garage into a living area
A garage conversion can be utilised to create additional living space in the form of an additional lounge or quiet area, possibly for use in conjunction with activities such as reading, yoga, or homework, provided that you already have sufficient bedrooms to meet your needs.
Due to the fact that multimedia is so prevalent in everyone's home life, it would be beneficial to designate a space in which any member of the family can go to get away from everything and enjoy some peace and quiet.
The expenses associated with moving house can be prohibitive; therefore, converting your garage into a playroom is an excellent way for young families to make their homework harder and deliver more on all levels.
Having a new playroom not only provides the children with their own space, which can be designed and decorated in accordance with their preferences, but it also ensures that the remaining areas of the house are not cluttered with toys and games.
Considering that storage is one of the most important aspects to take into account in this context, it is helpful to take the time to plan the flow of the room and investigate inventive solutions for keeping the floor clear of obstructions.
Converting your garage into a home office
There is no question that the digital age has brought about a shift towards more flexible working patterns. As a growing number of professionals are working from home on a regular basis, a garage conversion can offer the opportunity to confine work to a single room in the house.
When you work from home, it can be tempting to do your work in the living room or at the dining room table. However, blurring the line between work and home life can be detrimental to family relationships. It is likely that having a self-contained office environment will increase productivity.
Additionally, it is likely that it will make it easier to close the door and 'leave' work once the working day has come to an end. Many people who work for themselves set up an office in their garage so that they can hold client meetings and video conferences in a more professional setting than if they were huddled together at the kitchen table.
Cinemas, gymnasiums, craft rooms and more...
On the more glamorous side, the size and shape of a single garage are ideal for a home cinema. However, it is recommended that soundproofing be investigated to prevent the noise from permeating into the rest of the house.
There is, however, no reason why you cannot recreate the atmosphere of a movie theatre in the comfort of your own home by enhancing your WiFi signal and artfully concealing wires and cables.
Converting your garage into a home gym is a viable alternative to working up the motivation to go outside and exercise if you find it difficult to motivate yourself to leave the house. In point of fact, there is sufficient room for a shower room, a variety of exercise machines, and a workout area.
Converting your garage into a workshop might be just what you need if you're looking for a place to do your handiwork in peace.
This is especially true if you replace the main door of the garage with a sizable window that lets in plenty of natural light. It doesn't matter if you want to paint, sew, or make greeting cards; you'll always have a place to work and store your supplies, all within an atmosphere that is serene and conducive to creativity.
If your needs are more pragmatic in nature, you may want to consider converting your garage into a utility room so that you can free up space in the kitchen for a washing machine and tumble dryer.
This will allow you to make better use of the available space in your home. In addition, transforming your garage into a tidy and odour-free storage space can relieve some of the stress that's been piling up in the rest of your house.
And because it is so easy to misplace important items when there is so much clutter, having a clearly defined area for storage can help to reduce the likelihood of wasting a significant amount of time searching through disorganised piles of paper.
We have an extensive range of home repairs Melbourne services at Hitch Property Constructions.
Should I Convert my Garage?
In spite of the fact that converting your garage is, in the vast majority of instances, an excellent way to add space and value to your home, there are some circumstances in which doing so might not be a viable option or might cause more issues than it is worth. Think about the following factors to determine whether or not you should move forwards with this project:
- Will the construction cause one or more of the currently available rooms to be inaccessible for a significant portion of the time?
- Keep in mind that you are the one who will be held responsible for ensuring that the work done on your property is legal. Supervising the work, being present to allow the tradespeople access, and making design and other decisions will require a significant investment of time and effort.
- The question is, will permission to plan be granted? Is the house on a list, or is it located in a particular area?
- It is possible that you will end up paying more than you anticipated because of the cost of reinforcing the foundations, installing a new roof, etc.
It is not a given that converting a garage will result in a decrease in the value of the home; on the contrary, there are many instances in which the additional square footage is appealing to home buyers and will result in an increase in the resale value of your home.
Because the housing market is in a state of constant flux, there is no answer that is definitively correct regarding garage conversions.
You should make a decision based on your own unique requirements, and a reliable contracting company should assist you in investigating your alternatives and determining whether or not converting your garage would be beneficial to your situation.
However, if you follow the steps outlined above, you will be well on your way to being able to convert your garage without jeopardising the potential resale value of your home.
FAQs About Garage Renovation
Garage conversions are subject to specific building regulations.
- Maintain a strong and stable structure.
- Have a damp-proof course.
- Put insulation in the walls, the floor, and the loft to make it more energy efficient.
- Have passed a comprehensive safety inspection of the electrics.
- Be resistant to moisture and feature adequate ventilation.
- have been protected against the spread of fire and provide means of egress.
There is no need to get approval from the Building Regulations to instal block work or windows because the foundation of your existing garage is probably a traditional one, and you have no plans to convert the garage into a habitable space. This means that you do not need to worry about complying with the regulations.
Insulation not only assists in the retention of heat but also works to prevent the infiltration of moisture. Whether or not you are aware of it, garages that do not have insulation are extremely susceptible to issues involving moisture.
A If you have a mortgage on a property, you are not permitted to sell any portion of the property without first obtaining the approval of your lender. This is true even if the portion you wish to sell is a portion of the garden or the garage.
Wood stoves have to be installed on a fireproof surface, and the ideal location for this is a concrete garage slab. The installation of the wood stove can also include the addition of a single layer of bricks, concrete pavers, or ceramic tile. This can be done to add an aesthetic detail or more definition to the installation.