What to Consider Before Converting a Garage into a Small Home

Converting your garage into a small house will maximize your living area and provide a new living space to rent out or offer your son or daughter when they return home from college. When determining whether a garage-to-house conversion is right for you, you should remember that with some time and labor, you can save both space and money.

Cost Considerations

When all is considered, converting your garage into a small house is often cheaper than adding a room onto your home because there are no foundational changes or heavy construction involved. And, depending on the building codes in your local area, any additions to your house might need a costly foundation to be built. If your garage is already up-to-code, you can bypass these costs.

The money that is saved from dealing with such additional costs can easily be applied to interior design, plumbing and electricity, and finishing touches to create a new, comfortable living space.

Attached or Detached

One of the biggest factors in planning your garage conversion is whether the garage is attached or detached from your house. Both ways have their advantages and disadvantages.

Attached Garages

Attached garages benefit from the connection to the home; thus resulting in easy climate control and access for the homeowner. They are also better-suited for an attached room that would see regular use, such as an entertainment room or a master bedroom.

Detached Garages

If your garage is going to be converted to create a more private or functional-specific place, then a detached garage would benefit you for a number of reasons. For example, this space would work well as a separate workshop or an independent-living opportunity for older children who just married or are in college. It could also possibly serve as a space for the home office, free of any distractions.

Additional Considerations

Additional factors to consider in the decision to convert the garage are its overall size and your home's needs. Remember that with this conversion of your garage, your vehicles are going to be displaced. Cars that have lost their home to a full re-purposing of the garage can be moved to an external carport. Larger garages may be converted only in part, leaving room for a single car to park or for items to get stored.

If your garage is being used primarily for storage, then buying a portable storage shed is going to be well worth the cost so that you can get better use out of your garage by converting it into a living area.