How to make sure a garage conversion adds value

Published On: July 3, 20240 Comments on How to make sure a garage conversion adds valueTags: Last Updated: July 3, 20244.6 min read

If you’re keen to find a cost-effective way to add space in your home, a garage conversion can be a good option. Integrated garages tend to be under-utilised, so converting them is a practical solution. As the walls are already built and the basics such as electricity are in place, it can be easier and cheaper to do than an extension. In fact, the average cost lies between £7,500 and £15,000 for a single garage conversion.

But even with this affordable outlay, you want to make sure you’re getting your money’s worth out of the build. So, how do you make sure a garage conversion adds value?

Think about the future

Although converting your garage to a home gym or art studio may suit your lifestyle now, it’s important to think about the future too. Are you likely to move home somewhere down the line? If so, will you need to carry out further alterations to make this space appeal to the local market? Or can you create a space that’s versatile enough to be used for other things?

Rooms such as home gyms and art studios are fairly niche, so this is definitely something to think about. If the conversion has the potential to be used as an extra bedroom or home office too, then it will make your home easier to sell and you should see a return on your investment.

Even if you’re not planning to move, as you get older, you may want to use the space differently. So, keep the design versatile. Multifunctional lighting, plenty of electrical sockets and built-in storage are all worth working into the conversion.

garage conversion to living room with sliding door

Make sure the space is useful

This leads nicely onto the next point. As the space needs to be useful, the design needs some thought. To make the space usable it needs plenty of natural light, so you’re probably going to need to add in windows. And it shouldn’t feel too cut off from the rest of the house.

The internal access to a garage is usually from the kitchen. So, the new room might not automatically work as a kid’s bedroom unless you make some layout changes but it could give guests a nice, private space when they come to stay. It could also work well as a dining room, second reception room or playroom. In this case, would adding patio doors to the rear improve the function of the conversion?

A garage could also work as a utility room and shower room without needing to make alterations to the internal access. Splitting the space into two smaller rooms in this instance would be better, so both can be used at the same time.

Insulate it and heat it properly

To achieve a value-adding space with your garage conversion, it’s important to insulate and heat it properly. If you don’t, it’s not going to be practical for everyday use and it will let the house down in terms of energy efficiency.

If the garage is quite basic in construction, it may need insulation adding to the walls, floor and ceiling. It’s likely the walls have cavities, giving you scope to fill them and improve thermal efficiency. If you’re adding additional wall insulation, it’s best to do this externally to avoid eating into your floorspace.

In terms of heating, you could connect a few radiators to your main heating system or go with underfloor heating. If the room is a living space, you might also fancy adding in a feature fireplace to give the room a focal point and ensure it’s cosy.

garage converted into a living room

Build over the top

Some homes built in the 1980s and 1990s have integral garages that are built as a single storey to the side of the home. This could give you scope to build over the top and maximise the space inside your home without increasing the footprint.

Gaining living and sleeping space in a family home is a surefire way to add value. Of course, you do need to bear in mind is that this will increase your costs. And, to make sure the extension blends in, it needs to be built in the same style as the rest of your home. Otherwise, you could harm your home’s your kerb appeal.

Get the frontage right

How your home looks on the outside does affect its value. So, to make sure any garage conversion is a financially sound investment, you need to get the frontage right.

It’s likely that you’ll be removing the old garage door but what you replace it with is crucial. You could brick it up and add a window. This would work, of course. But you’ll need to try to match the window to the style of the others and source matching bricks. If this can’t be done, it might be worth thinking about render or cladding to hide the mismatch. And consider replicating this in the existing parts of your home for a cohesive exterior design.

As the driveway is designed to go right up to the garage, you might also want to think about some landscaping to break up that link. It could be as simple as some planters along the wall or you might redo your driveway, paths and borders to create a new flow and a more attractive frontage.

Share This Tip With Your Friends!

About the Author: Handyman tips team

The Handyman Tips Team is a group of authors that provides tips on the Handyman Tips website. The Handyman Tips team consists of real handymen, contractors, carpenters, woodworkers, and experts in home repairs, appliance repairs, and landscaping. The team is always there for visitors to the Handyman Tips website. If you can't find the answer to your question on the Handyman Tips website, one of them will reply to you almost immediately if you contact them through the Ask the Handyman page!

Leave A Comment