living room

Things to Do Before You Convert a Garage into a Living Area

It’s a complicated question to decide whether to convert your garage into a house extension when you’ve outgrown your home’s available living space. Before starting any work, consider the pros and cons of restoration and remodeling your garage into a living area.

Converting a garage can be an exciting option for some homeowners who are cramped for space. It may be a logical solution in areas where it’s difficult to expand, and property values are low. However, there could be drawbacks to converting your garage.

You can easily convert your garage into an office, extra bedroom, kids’ playroom, or even a man cave. Turning your garage into an apartment is also a great option. The possibilities are endless. For this reason, you need to see the things you need to prepare before starting this restoration and remodeling project.

1. Look for Inspirations for Converting Your Garage

The most affordable garage ideas usually involve sealing off the garage doors and insulating the walls, floors, and ceilings. This creates an extra room in the house that can be used for various purposes, like a bonus room, playroom, or man cave. 

Restoration and remodeling a garage into a bedroom is usually cheaper than adding an entire apartment with a bathroom. It will be more work if you want to take your garage renovation to the next level. You will need to install additional plumbing, data cables, or expensive fixtures.

Some ideas you can execute include:

  • A home gym may be inexpensive to set up in terms of converting the garage, but filling it with exercise machines could be costly.
  • A home movie theater might be an excellent addition, but the chairs and projector screen could be expensive.
  • A rental apartment, a lounge with a full wet bar, an art studio, a music room, a billiard room, or a library

2. Project Expenses

The costs of converting a garage can vary widely, from around $8,000 to over $25,000. This depends mainly on the amount of plumbing and electrical work required.

Depending on your plans, plumbing can quickly become a significant expense. If you want to restore and remodel the garage into a space where you can shower, use the bathroom, and cook, you should expect to spend between $1,000 and $2,500 on the plumbing installation.

If your garage doesn’t already have electrical wiring, you will most likely need to upgrade it. This will require adding more breakers to accommodate your power requirements and adding at least one more 20-amp circuit for primary living conditions.

To make your garage an actual living space, you’ll need to replace the garage door with a solid wall. This is because garage doors don’t do an outstanding job of keeping the heat in during the winter or out during the summer.

Other things to consider are heating and cooling the new living space, insulation, walls, floor, ceiling, and security. The costs will add up quickly!

3. Permits and Laws

Before starting your garage conversion, check with your local government to see what permits are required. You will need to get access before making any additions to your property. Also, you should be aware that increasing the square footage of your property may also increase your property taxes.

Getting approval to convert your garage can be challenging because some cities require a certain number of off-street parking spots. If you’re part of a homeowner’s association, they will also have to approve the project.


The decision to restore or remodel your garage into a living space is enormous. It could be an exciting choice if you’re looking for more living space.

As with any large project, you should put together a plan and stick to it. You should consider what you want to be able to do in your new space and then plan a budget and the space to accommodate that goal.

If you’re considering turning your garage into a living space, don’t hesitate to contact the experts. BMR Homes will be able to give you a better idea of what’s involved and help you plan an affordable garage restoration and remodeling in Homewood, Al. Start a conversation with us and see what it will take to make your idea a reality.

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