Converting your garage into a room might be an appealing alternative if you need additional living space in your house. Although costs can vary depending on your region and your ideas, a garage makeover should cost around half of what you’d anticipate spending on a new house addition. However, there are other factors to consider before embarking on a project of this magnitude.
Raising the floor, insulating the walls, installing heating, cooling, and ventilation, and replacing doors and windows are all part of the process of converting a garage into a living area. Take the time to analyze all aspects of the job before beginning a garage renovation.
Is it legal?
The first step in planning a garage conversion is determining whether or not it is legal. Many homeowners begin the process without first examining the legalities and later suffer problems, especially if they need to sell the house. This implies that permissions must be obtained before beginning any activity. For further information on applying for garage conversion permits, contact your city’s Zoning Department. When filing for a permit, you may need to collaborate with an architect to produce a proposed floor plan.
When planning to convert a garage, it’s important to examine local building laws because numerous rules govern how the space may be created. The ordinances may include regulations for installing everything from a restroom to a closet. These rules must always be followed since they affect zoning, insurance, and taxes. If you are unable to achieve any of these standards, you may be eligible to ask for a variance depending on the nature of the problem.
The cost of a garage conversion permit might vary, but the typical cost is usually between $1,000 and $1,500. If you need to ask for a variance, expect to spend extra. Keep in mind that certain local regulations or homeowner associations may mandate a particular quantity of covered parking, which may preclude you from converting your garage. If your area requires a permit, it will also necessitate an inspection after the renovation to ensure that all building code and zoning standards have been satisfied.
What does it cost?
Because a garage already has a foundation, walls, and a roof, reusing the existing structure often costs half of what a new addition would. Depending on the amenities you choose, converting a two-car garage would likely cost between $20,000 and $50,000. Add an extra $15,000 to $25,000 if you intend to build a bathroom. The final cost will be determined by the size of your garage, the sort of room you are building, and the level of professional contracting assistance required. Here are some additional costs you may need to consider:
- Permits: $1,000 to $1,500
- Insulation: $1 per square foot of wall and floor
- Wall framing: $2,000 or more, depending on the size and number of rooms
- Windows: $1,000 per each added window
- Ducts and vents: $500 to $2,000
- Electrical wiring: $50 to $100 an hour
- Plumbing: $300 to $1,800
- Dumpster rental for waste removal: $415, the average cost for a 20-yard dumpster rental
What does it take?
A garage conversion is not a low-cost project. A quality conversion, for example, may take 4-6 weeks and contain the following:
- Raising the floor height to accommodate insulation over the concrete slab.
- Completely insulating the walls and ceiling.
- Heating and cooling the room, either by connecting to the house’s main system or by installing an independent system, such as a ductless mini-split system.
- An improvement to the electrical service to suit the increased load.
- To create an open floor layout, remove the dividing wall between your house and the garage.
- Using completely insulated stud walls to replace garage doors.
- Putting in new windows and doors.
Additional steps and improvements can be added depending on what you want and need in the room. The first thing you will want to do is work with a designer or contractor to help you discover everything that needs to be done. At Valor Home Services, we do exactly that!
Does it add value to your home?
A garage conversion will increase the value of your property as long as it is done appropriately, with permits, and in accordance with construction rules. The value is determined by how smooth the conversion is and the sort of space you construct. In most cases, you may anticipate recuperating roughly 80% of the renovation cost in property value. A garage makeover might reduce the value of your property if:
- Your community mandates covered parking or restricted street parking. If not having a garage makes parking difficult, it will reduce the value of your home.
- The work is being done illegally or without permission. While permits may appear to be a burden at first, they will serve to raise the worth of the project in the long term.
- The project removes the need for storage. If your property currently has insufficient storage space, eliminating the garage can compound the situation and perhaps reduce the sale price.
What are the pros?
Here are the pros to converting your garage into a bedroom:
- The most significant advantage is that homeowners acquire increased square footage. A two-car garage may add 600 square feet of room.
- Converting a garage into a room can raise the value of your property, especially if the garage is unused. Adding a useable room is a wise financial decision.
- A second master bedroom may be quite beneficial for an expanding family or a household with elderly who have difficulty accessing upper floors. It is also advantageous to use the main bedroom as an in-law suite.
- It is a good idea to analyze the motivation for converting the garage to a master suite before proceeding with the layout. Who will make use of it? Would you like to rent it out? What will the design look like? These are excellent questions to pose.
What are the cons?
Here are the cons to converting your garage into a bedroom:
- The most significant disadvantage of converting a garage is the loss of a vehicle shelter. Keep this in mind when you plan, since you will miss out on a protected parking place. This isn’t a major concern if you have two garages or if your street isn’t too congested.
- Unless you have a large enough driveway, some towns compel homeowners to build off-street parking places for their automobiles. This might result in additional costs or force you to abandon any garage conversion ideas.
- A converted garage can also lower the value of a home, where purchasers expect an insulated and dedicated parking area.
- Keep a buffer for hidden expenditures in mind while planning and budgeting for garage renovation. It should not only allow for substantial structural modifications, but it should also account for any permit expenses and taxes.
- Exposure to the weather might cause your automobiles to age prematurely.
- Parking outdoors may make it more difficult to have your driveway plowed after a blizzard.
- Parking outside raises the likelihood of car break-ins and thefts in areas where such crimes are prevalent.
- Some densely populated localities require residences to have a certain number of off-street parking places, so converting the garage may not be a legal option unless you can offer them elsewhere on the lot.
How long does it take?
Planning a garage conversion depletes the most valuable resource: time. Depending on the scope of the renovation, a single-space garage conversion might take anywhere from one week to one month. A two-car garage will undoubtedly take longer. Planning and obtaining approvals will cost more time and money. A garage conversion project not only necessitates a significant financial commitment but also time and effort, which is why hiring a site planner may help you save time.
Can I DIY it?
While we may live in the DIY era, we do not recommend converting your garage into a bedroom on your own. There are many different moving parts. From obtaining permits to gutting and remodeling, there are many steps that your average homeowner may not know how to do. Plus, think about the tools and time it will take you to get it done. From the get-go, we recommend working with a talented, trustworthy contractor like Valor Home Services. For more information, give us a call today.