January 15, 2016

Create your Dream Living Space with a Garage Conversion

Is it time to expand your living space? Have you been torn between moving to a new home or remodeling your existing home? If this is the case, one option is to renovate your garage.

If your garage isn’t getting much use, converting it can open up many possibilities for your home. A converted garage can become a guest studio, an entertainment space, a “man cave”, a home gym, a recording studio, an office and so on.

Man making plan

Converting Your Garage: Where To Start?

How involved your garage conversion is depends on two factors: what you will be using the space for, and the current condition of your garage.

Many newer homes feature finished garages. They already have drywall, insulation and sometimes heating and air conditioning. If your garage is older, you will have to address these things first.

Your budget will dictate how much you are able to do here. If you can afford it, you could hire a contractor to do the remodel. If not, you can do much of the work yourself.

Turning Your Garage Into a Home Gym

A home gym doesn’t have to be elaborate to be effective, but a few simple tweaks can make it functional and pleasant.

  • If possible, finish your garage with drywall and make any necessary repairs to the floor, such as filling in chips, cracks, etc.
  • Consider an epoxy flooring, or even a laminate or vinyl floor.
  • Purchase mats for your workout space to maximize safety and functionality.
  • Be sure that the space has adequate ventilation and temperature control.
  • Consider wiring in a sound system or maybe a wall-mounted television if you are the type that likes to watch T.V. while you work out.
  • When planning your layout, be sure to strategically place electric equipment, such as a treadmill near the outlet.
  • Purchase or construct containers, shelving and cabinets to house equipment.
  • Consider a small refrigerator for water bottles and workout snacks.
  • Large wall mirrors complete the gym atmosphere and add light and space.

Create the Perfect Home Office

If you work from home or own a small business, a separate office can be ideal. Making your workspace pleasant, safe and comfortable should be your priority. Trying to work in a dark, dusty and poorly ventilated garage isn’t going to work!

  • Temperature control is important. If you haven’t already done so, have the HVAC system wired into the garage. If you don’t have the budget for that, then at least be sure to have a fan and a space heater.
  • Natural light is preferable. Consider installing a window or skylight into your new office.
  • Laminate or tile flooring is nice, or a decorative epoxy coating will work, too.
  • Decorate your office just as you would any other. Photos, art, plants, etc.

The Home Recording Studio

The most important factors here are soundproofing and equipment security. Be sure that your home studio is leak-proof, you don’t want your equipment to get damaged by moisture.

  • Soundproof the garage with acoustic tiles on the walls, floor and ceiling.
  • Build a sound box with plywood and line the interior with more acoustic tiles.
  • Be sure that the room is properly ventilated and you have fans. The equipment can get overheated quickly.
  • Don’t forget appropriate decor: Posters, memorabilia and more!

Improvise where you can, depending on your needs and budget. Some garage conversions are elaborate and require the help of a contractor, and some are quite simple. If you are going to make major structural changes, you may need permits.

It’s also important to have a garage door that fits your new living space. For example, consider a contemporary garage door with large glass windows to let in the natural light.

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