How To Convert Your Garage Into A Usable, Liveable Space

How To Convert Your Garage Into A Usable, Liveable Space

Let’s face it, our garages are dusty, neglected places. Most aren’t actually used for our cars either. A high proportion of garages are only used for storage space. This space could be far better used, or at least tidied up! Turning your garage into a usable, livable space will transform your home.

You’ll add more rooms and let the house breathe a little. If you’re planning on selling, it will also add value to your property. Let’s take a look at where to start.

Cleaning

Your first job is to face up to the mess and dirt! Purge the garage of all the years of clutter. Take it to charity shops, recycling center or the tip. For the items you’re keeping, invest in a good garage storage solution and get it all out of the way. Now to tackle the floors. Use a power hose to remove all the stubborn dirt and get up into the corners of the roof.

Design and planning

Next is the creative phase. Think about how you’d like to use your new room and start sketching. Decide whether to keep the whole space or split it into two rooms with a dividing wall. Draw a rough layout so you can plan where electrics and plumbing will go. Try to tie this into your existing systems.

Building regulations

You shouldn’t need full planning permission here, as you’re not altering the shape of the home. However, you may need to file for a ‘change of use’ permission. You will also need to comply with all building regulations including provisions for fire exists, insulation, etc.

Insulation and damp-proofing

Remember, the structure is designed to be a garage, not a habitable room. With that in mind, it’s unlikely that there is satisfactory insulation and damp proofing. Get quotes for both of these jobs. Damp-proofing is especially important, particularly on the garage floor. It’s these jobs that will ensure the room is watertight and complies with regulations. It’s the first major step to making it a usable room.

Plumbing and wiring

If you plan on using your new room as a bedroom, you’ll need to consider plumbing and wiring. Rooms like a study or a gym are less reliant on plumbing, but you will need to think about electricity. It’s best to consult an architect or capable tradesman here. They’ll advise you how best to run the existing wiring and plumbing into the new rooms. The trick is to make this process affordable.

Flooring, windows and walls

Finally, you’re ready to turn your empty garage into a habitable space. The aesthetic aspects are up next, and that includes the flooring, windows and walls. If you want to turn the garage into two rooms, a simple division wall will work perfectly. Windows are best left to the experts while flooring is relatively simple to lay yourself.

There you have it, folks! You’ve completed your garage conversion. All that’s left to do is put your interior design hat on.

Nhu Anh

Nhu Anh is a professional editor in the field of architecture and interior design. Having a strong desire for architecture and design in her writing career, Nhu Anh attempts to provide readers the most wonderful architectural news and projects.

 

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