For many people, their garage has become the new loft; a space for storing their odds and ends or perhaps that gym equipment that never saw the light of day. And much like with a loft, many homeowners are beginning to see the value in converting that extra space into an extra room for their home.
If you’re considering converting your garage space into something more habitable, we’ve got you covered. Here is our guide on how to convert your garage into a room.
The Pros of a Garage Conversion
The average garage is approximately 128 square feet, so it’s no wonder converting this space into something useful comes with a whole host of benefits. Here are just a few pros of converting your garage into a room:
- Can add approximately £45,000 to the value of your house (according to research conducted by Admiral Insurance).
- Cheaper, quicker and easier than building an extension from scratch.
- Doesn’t take up any extra space.
Do You Need Planning Permission to Convert a Garage?
Much like with a loft conversion, chances are that converting your garage will not require planning permission. Converting a garage will typically fall under your Permitted Development Rights, which means so long as you adhere to the conditions and correct Building Regulations, you’re safe to get your project underway.
However, there are some instances where you will need to apply for planning permission, such as if you live in a listed property. Make sure to contact your local authority before you begin any construction work to ensure that your project does fall into the realm of Permitted Development to avoid receiving an enforcement notice.
The Cost of a Garage Conversion
It has been estimated that converting a garage requires approximately £1,000/m², which would cover:
- Building Regulations
- Structural Engineer costs
Please note that this is the estimated cost of the building alone and does not include any spending on furniture and finishes. It’s also worth noting that this would be a minimum estimate and is dependent on your choice of materials and contractors.
So, for a single garage conversion, you could be looking at spending approximately £20,000, which is still more affordable than the average £30,000 cost of building an extension.
Where to Begin When Converting Your Garage
There is more to converting a garage than just furnishing it. You need to ensure that the space you’re converting is habitable for someone, which at the very least includes:
- Levelling and damp-proofing the floor
- Infilling the garage door
- Ensuring ventilation
- Insulating the walls, floor and roof
- Plasterboard and plaster
Infilling the Garage Door
This is the key element that separates converting a garage from other conversion or extension projects. There are multiple routes you can take when it comes to infilling the garage door, including:
- Infilling to match the existing walls
- Using glazing to allow in natural light
- Using blacks and house cladding/rendering
What you choose to do with the garage door comes down to personal taste and style, but please ensure that your garage foundations are suitable to support a new wall. You can do this by contacting experienced structural engineers, like our team in Cornwall and Devon, to assess the suitability of your foundations.
So, if you’re looking for an easier and more affordable alternative to expanding your living space, then harnessing the potential of your garage might be the best choice for you.
We offer a range of structural and surveyance services here at Martin Perry associates. So, if you’re looking for a structural engineer to ensure the suitability of your home for a conversion, get in touch with us today.