During the 1970s, most new homes here in the country only had one-car garages. And two years ago, about 63 percent of newly constructed homes have larger, livable and modern two-car garages. Perhaps the improvement in this house feature is due to the increasing need to house bigger cars and store more items. If you have an old home with a small garage, now is the ripe time to embark on remodeling your garage into a bigger and livable space.
Your current garage can be converted into another living space in simple steps. This structure already has the fundamental components of a sound structure - foundation, walls and roof. Thus, it transforming it into a more comfortable space other than for parking your car is definitely possible. But there are some brief pointers you have to consider before you do any renovations. First of all, carefully examine your space. Review its original design so you can clearly plan its new look. Decide whether you want an expansion or retention of the existing area.
Make a rough draft or a sketchy layout of its current appearance. Draw another layout opposite it with your new design. Including the details of additional installations and re-assignment of electrical wiring and plumbing is crucial in your initial plan. Seek assistance from professionals like a home inspector or a structural engineer so you can have a better overview of which aspects need immediate replacements or major repairs. Moreover, list down all the construction materials from small pieces like nails and hooks to big fixtures needed at the same time you go over your layout.
The next thing you have to do is preparing the budget for this project. It would be a lot more organized when you list down the remodeling items along with their prices. There are numerous sources of current price listings. You can get a free quotation from your local lumber yard, hardware store or any home improvement shop. Usually, these venues have their respective websites that offer the same free quotation service. In addition, allocate budget for the labor. Calculate the labor costs per handyman per hour. If you are having major construction work, you can save a few bucks by hiring a contractor. Plus, you are saved from being all too stressed out when you do not have to think about every single detail of buying the materials and individual check-ups per handyman's progress. However, you cannot entirely be hands off the project. Your input is invaluable to this project.
To assure everything will sail smoothly according to your plan, do not forget to check whether you need to secure building permits. There are specific conditions wherein the local building codes and regulations must be complied with. Some of the construction work that needs securing a permit are demolishing load-bearing walls, altering roofline and footprint of the house, major installations and new electrical wiring and plumbing.
The previously mentioned tasks seem painstaking. However there are simple things you can do to instantly transform your garage into a more comfortable space. Say, your current garage has sound insulation and ventilation, all you need are a few additions here and there. Re-organize the items in this space. Place tall cabinets and stand-alone dividers to clearly draw the line boundaries for the parking area and your living area. In the living area, you can place potted plants of different sizes to create a fresher look. Add a set of table and chairs and adorn the latter with plush pillows. Assign a reading nook by putting in small shelves for magazines, pocketbooks or photo albums. If there is still more room, hang a hammock flushed on one side to establish your special relaxation spot. Use different paint colors for the two areas. Choose calm neutral colors to make the whole space look more inviting.
As for massive renovations, include functional installations like a thin wall to totally separate the parking area and the living space. Apart from the garage door, add a patio door and/or large windows to allow more light into this space. A kitchenette is also an innovative feature to add into this area. If your budget permits, a detached garage will prove to heighten the desirability of your property. With this type of garage, you can opt for a two-level structure. The mezzanine or second floor can solely serve the purpose as your office, workshop, hobby area or entertainment room.
This endeavor opens you up to an opportunity to organize your belongings, give your vehicle/s further protection and have an additional living space. This can prove to be successful experience despite all the expenses.