Email us now

Should you consider converting your garage?

Created: 10/10/2018

The current housing market is extremely competitive, with more people searching for their dream home than ever before. When it comes to deciding what features you would love your future house to have, a garage is at the top of the list for many. However, despite this often being a major attraction for potential buyers, current homeowners can often leave the space neglected. Sometimes seen as “out of sight, out of mind”, garages can quickly become a dumping ground for any clutter that has been collected from around the house, meaning that the space isn’t being utilised to its full potential.

When it comes to converting your garage, the best thing to do is to reach out to a professional, such as a contractor or experienced London handyman services who will be able to advise you on what the best steps for you to take are. The main things that you need to consider are points such as removing the garage door, as well as if you’re going to need to install stud walls to separate the space. This is often needed as garages are a long space, so breaking it up into separate rooms allows you to work with space a little better. Of course, this is entirely dependent on what you want out of the space, however!

A garage has a plethora of uses that extend way beyond a space to house your car and, in fact, are a wonderful way of making the most of the footprint of your home. Find out more about whether a garage conversion would work for you with our helpful guide below!

 

Planning permission

One of the biggest benefits of converting a garage is that, in most cases, planning permission is not required, especially when you’re keeping the footprint of the garage the same. As long as the majority of the work that is being undertaken is done internally, informing your local planning authority isn’t necessary. With this in mind, any structural differences, such as extending the garage or converting with the intention of creating a separate house, should be disclosed to ensure that the work is lawful and has the correct permissions.

There are a few other cases in which you should consult before going ahead with converting, such as with listed buildings and new builds. In particular, new builds may have certain stipulations which require the garage to remain as parking, although this also comes with the possibility of removing this condition.

If you’re unsure as to whether you require planning permission or if you have permitted development rights, it is always best to check with your local planning authority before starting the project. This way, you won’t be subject to any fees upon completion and won’t have any hiccups if you decide to sell at a later date.

 

Parking

In some cases, finding parking in residential areas is a struggle, with permits and parking restrictions in place. This can sometimes add up or even mean that you’re unlikely to find space close to your house to park overnight. Because of this, garages are in high demand, as it means that you have a guaranteed space for your car in close proximity to your home. With this in mind, it may be worth questioning whether converting your garage is going to be beneficial for you.

Not only does a garage mean that you won’t have to worry about where to park your car after a long day driving, but it also means that your car will be protected when not in use. A car is often a huge investment, so having a garage means that it can be kept out of harm’s way, with the wear and tear minimised. Adverse weather conditions, such as rain and snow, can cause cars to prematurely rust, taking a toll on your car, whilst the sun can make your vehicle an incredibly hot space for you to be in, causing your drive to be unnecessarily uncomfortable. What’s more is that garages are secure, keeping your car out of danger from the risk of theft or vandalism, which will provide you with peace of mind.

Despite these things, you may still find that your garage often goes unused for parking. So, would it make more sense for you to convert the space to something else? If you have room in front of your garage for parking, it may not make sense for you to park your car inside every day, especially if you currently don’t’ have an adjoining door into your home.

 

Extra space

There’s several different reasons that you may need extra space in your home, from growing your family to hosting additional guests on a regular basis. A garage conversion is perfect in these cases, especially if you’ve been thinking about moving in search for these supplementary rooms. From an extra lounge for the kids to keeping their toys in a bedroom for when your friends and family come to stay, a garage conversion has heaps of potential for you to think about.

“Garage conversions is a great opportunity to increase your house value since you are adding an extra room to the house. With sometimes little investments (depending on what look you are trying to achieve) you can add a liveable space to your house without investing in building an extension,” says Anna from L’Essenziale who recommends a garage conversion if you feel as though you’re short on space.

 

COSTS

Garage conversions are perfect if you’ve been considering moving, as they’re generally cheaper than the fees that can accumulate when moving properties! This can be a great investment if you’re looking at staying in the property for the foreseeable future, as you’ll get your money out of it, which is great.

The actual conversion costs will include the labour of the people who are doing the conversion for you, as well as the structural things that you’ll need. This includes insulation, flooring, doors and windows and any electrical wiring that will have to take place. These costs can add up, so it is essential that you create a budget beforehand so that you can allow for any extra costs that may pop up along the way.

Aside from the costs of converting the garage, you’ll need to think about the resale potential in the future. “Sometimes instead of increasing the value of the property, converting your garage might actually decrease it”, says Anna. “I recommend consulting a local real estate agent before starting to do any major renovations. Plus, if you use the garage as a storage most likely you will have plenty of things that you need to keep somewhere during the renovation works. Hiring a storage space or building a small shed might be a good consideration.”

 



Back to News