How Much Will A Garage Conversion Cost?

Remodeling Garage Into Living Space: Office Spaces, Bedrooms, Living Rooms, and More.

Converting Garage Into Living Space

The cost to convert a garage into a living space or room costs about $8,799 to $16,000, depending on the square foot, your goals, and the scope of project such as roofing type, flooring options, and plumbing.

Garage Conversion Costs & Transforming Into A Living Space

Garage Conversion Costs

The Scope Of Your Garage Conversion

Garage conversion costs can vary greatly depending on the scope of your project. Today a modern garage conversion is a far more involved and an evolved process than any of our best efforts of yesteryear. If your goal is to add real, useful, and aesthetically pleasing additional living space to your home, a garage conversion is quite a viable option.

When you properly transform the utilization of your garage space, you’ll create the impression both to yourself and to guests that your new space is a “proper” addition to your home and that it had never even been a garage in the first place.

Benefits of Converting Your Garage

Does it make more sense to have more space available for storage and parking your car or is that space better put to use as additional living space? This is ultimately the decision you must make when contemplating a possible garage conversion.

There are indeed compromises involved but making the move certainly offers a number of distinct advantages.

Re-Sale Value

When you begin to entertain a conversion of your garage into additional functioning living space, one of the first concerns that may come to mind relates to cost. Will it be worth it? How much will it cost and what is my budget? Will it affect my home’s value? These sort of questions are natural and, thankfully, have reassuring answers.

garage attached to home

Will it affect your home’s value?

It absolutely will, in nearly every case. Most estimates suggest that a garage conversion can add as much as 10% to the overall value of any given property. The actual increase in resale value in your case will depend on the new intended use of your converted space, the quality of finishings used, and the size of your new space relative to your home’s existing dimensions.

Will it be worth it?

This question is perhaps the most challenging question to answer as it ultimately becomes an individual decision. When trying to decide whether or not to convert your garage into usable living space, it pays to first determine what type of space you hope to add, how much the addition of that space will improve your life and what the overall garage conversion costs will be.

Building Additions

Expanding Family

Most families grow throughout the years. If you have a new baby on the way, you’ll need to find more space. Maybe your in-laws or elderly parents require more assistance and want to come and live with you in their golden years.

It’s also becoming increasingly more common for young adults in their 20s and 30s to move back home after completing schooling as a way to save money while looking for the best way to get started in their budding careers. Any and all of these scenarios are examples of expanding family situations that can be aided by converting your garage into additional livable space.

Garages Are Often Wasted Space

People rarely park their cars in their garage, but rather use it as a storage space and with varying degrees of organization involved. If your garage is really just a big, glorified storage bin, you have the choice to do something with that wasted space.

What Can Your Garage Become?

There are so many attractive options regarding what your garage could become with just a little bit of planning, skilled labor, and a minor investment in materials. Once you decide that you want to avail yourself to this new found space, the question then becomes what to do with it.

Living Space

There are a number of exciting types of living space that could result from a converted garage. You might convert your garage into a family room, a den or a media room for watching movies and entertaining. When you first moved into your house, you might not have envisioned how small it might feel some years later.

Extra livable square footage has been hiding right under your nose, right behind that automatic rolling garage door.

Extra Bedroom

Whether you desire a cozy and attractive space for a guest bedroom or a new room for two siblings that no longer are young enough to easily share a bedroom, extra bedrooms are popular conversion choices.

With a little bit of effort and not a whole lot of cost, you’ll be able to convert into a bedroom out of your old garage and make your home that much more comfortable and inviting for guests.

Office space

It’s a very popular choice to take a garage, or part of one, and convert it into an office space. This works especially well if you’re a home-business owner. A garage converted into an office allows for a separate entrance for business-related guests that are visiting strictly for business purposes.

The cost to convert your garage will vary a bit depending on the intended use of the new space, but that choice doesn’t tell the whole story about cost. Material choice has a lot to do with the final price and nearly any type of space can be created within a similar, and reasonable budget, by simply becoming mindful of material choices.

Garage Conversions Entire Home

Many homeowners have found excellent reasons to add an additional smaller home behind, or adjacent to, their original house for a variety of reasons. Rather than pouring a new slab cement foundation and framing a new structure, many homeowners will look towards their garage for a starting-off point.

In some cases, you might wish to add an apartment or guest house for a family member.

In other scenarios, a garage converted into an entire livable small home can provide suitable supplemental revenue as an income property for the homeowner.

Provided all of the work is done properly and according to your local building ordinances, you can stand to gain a consistent, quasi-passive income stream that can go a long way towards offsetting the cost of your living expenses or give you the ability to pay down your home’s primary mortgage at a quicker pace.

Important Considerations / Before Getting Started

Your mind might be starting to flood with excitement and incredible visions of how a garage conversion might transform your home and make your day to day live so much more enjoyable.

Before committing to a particular concept or budget for the job, make sure you have every angle covered.

Material Choices For Your Garage Conversion

What you choose with the things that affect how you garage looks is important. One material choice not mentioned below is whether or not you will need to knock down or add new walls. This part of a garage conversion can effect the cost so bear in mind those decisions.

The main choices for material items can include: flooring, painting, lighting.

Floors: Flooring options can easily range from modified concrete, to carpet, astroturf, vinyl or linoleum. Before choosing a flooring type, you’ll want to discuss the slope of your original garage with your contractor as many have floors that are angled downward towards the door to prevent water from pooling in the garage.

When converting your garage into living space, you’ll want to make sure that precautions are taken to ensure water is not going to collect in your new living space and won’t eventually threaten the foundation or exterior walls.

Paint: Garages typically feature either unfinished cement walls or cement covered with drywall that is crudely painted or only patched, but not actually painted. When there is paint, it tends to be a single coat of primer specifically formulated for use in garages. It tends to be flat and unappealing for a living area.

Your garage conversion process should include a discussion regarding paint colors. You can bring the colors from your main home into the converted garage space or choose different, yet complimentary hues.

Light: Most garages don’t have windows and they usually have minimal, if any sufficient lighting. Your garage conversion team will discuss the cost considerations for adding windows, skylights and recessed lighting. A small investment in this area goes a long way to create a very homey feel and to mask any hint that the space had at one point been a garage.

Your Car After You Convert The Garage

The long and short of your decision regarding a permanent relegation of your car to some exterior space, whether it be the street or your driveway, is just how impactful will that be? If you are a purveyor of fine and rare historic automobiles, or vehicles of any era that rival the cost of your home itself, these are some good reasons to consider leaving them housed in a locked and protected garage.

If you’re like most people and your vehicle spends most days and nights parked outside the garage anyway, a garage conversion won’t hinge on where your car will go after the work is complete.

You want to ask yourself whether the benefit of adding significant living space to your home can outweigh the potential drawbacks of your car or cars residing outdoors. Do you live in a particularly harsh climate? Is your neighborhood specifically susceptible to automobile break-ins and theft? If either of your answers are yes and you can envision your car as a possible target, then a garage conversion might not make a world of sense for you.

Considering your Garage Conversion as One Big Room vs. Partitioning

If you add interior walls for separation as well as implement closets for storage, you will increase the cost of the conversion, but also add significant value by maximizing the usefulness of the space. A partition in a larger garage can lend itself to having two functions to a converted garage rather than only one.

You may also choose to install an additional bathroom in your garage depending on your property’s plumbing logistics and current configuration.

Total Time to Complete A Garage Conversion

This can be a major point of contention for many homeowners, and rightfully so. The conventional wisdom in this area is to avoid working with any contractors that are unable to give you hard time commitments for the completion of their work. If they can’t easily estimate the time it will take, that should be an indicator that perhaps they haven’t yet completed many garage conversions and may be anticipating hitting a snag or two along the way.

Generally, it shouldn’t take very long to complete a garage conversion, either. A fast job can be done in under a week when materials and plans are available from the start. A longer, more involved, project may take as long as 2-4 weeks when a more elaborate design is desired. Larger sized garage conversions generally take more time than smaller ones.

Finishing the space above your garage

An excellent way to relocate your storage but still keep it within your garage is to finish the space above the main floor of your garage. This reduces the need to get rid of items completely and also allows you to maximize the usefulness of your new living area.

Depending on the conversion design plan, there may be plenty of available space for a loft over your newly created interior walls. Loft space lends itself nicely to storage but can also be used for a small guest bedroom nook, depending on your needs.

Garage Conversion as an outdoor living space

You may choose to repurpose some of the area around your garage that may have previously been part of your driveway. This repurposed space is often used as outdoor entertaining space. You might want to add some patio furniture and a grill or reconfigure the ground so that sod can grow.

A few planters, landscaping stones, and furniture items can go a long way towards giving your converted garage’s outdoor space a truly pleasant appearance.

Garage Type Matters

There are three main types of garages and each will present slightly different challenges and opportunities for your garage renovation process.

Attached: As the name suggests, an attached garage minimally shares a common wall with your home, but may share two or more common walls.

In most cases, attached garages already have an entryway into the garage space from the main structure.

Detached: Depending on where you live, you may need additional building permits when modifying a detached garage into a living space that wouldn’t be needed for their attached counterparts.

In many cases, you’ll want to consider what the use will be when converting a detached garage, as certain necessities such as kitchens may be inconvenient to access when the converted garage space isn’t near the original main structure.

Integrated: An integrated garage is like an attached garage, but it is even more embedded into the original footprint of the home. You’ll find that when converting an integrated garage, it may be even easier to create the effect that the garage was never a garage in the first place, once the work has been completed.

Working With Your Garage Size

The variety of possibilities available to you in a garage remodeling effort will vary depending on factors aside from budget. One of the primary considerations on which any garage conversion team will focus is the initial size of your garage.

A bigger garage, quite obviously, will give you more space with which to work when the layout is drawn up for the intended redesign.

Single garages will typically add approximately 150 square feet of new living space to your home’s original size.

Double garages will add, as you might assume, about twice the space of a single garage or 300 total square feet of new living space. Obviously, the larger your garage is, the more options you’ll have in terms of the possible uses of your converted living space.

You might even want to consider a hybrid design where you keep one garage bay and convert the other one into a living area.

When you consider how complicated, costly, and potentially stressful it can be to sell your home and move to a new one, any homeowner would be open to other options. A garage conversion is certainly a viable alternative. The incentives are definitely aligned in favor of a “yes” decision, but it also pays to reference this ultimate garage conversion guide!