Want to see a detailed example of the steps of converting a garage in to interior living space (like a family room)?
(To see all the renovation photos, scroll down in this box. To see another set of detailed before & after photos of a living room converted from a garage, click that prior link. Even more "after" pictures of conversions are here).
These first two photos are "before and after" this 1-car garage was converted to a cozy family room (from the same angle: facing north from the back of the space). As you can see, basically, the garage door was removed and replaced with a wall that now features a flatscreen TV over an electric "fireplace" (as in a decorative heater built in to the wall... which of course makes no smoke and no fire). More details are below.
First, why did they want to convert this garage to a room?
Next, let's consider the background on why these homeowners chose to convert the garage. The main issue was the most common factor in garage conversion: not enough living space. Before these renovations, this small two-story home had only 1200 square feet of interior living space. That is not much for a growing family, right?
Their garage wasn't even getting used for storing a car most of the time! The garage was increasingly getting to be just an "overflow" storage area.
It was a little bit of a pantry, a little of bit of rehearsal space for a teenage rock band, and (according to one of the spouses- we'll let you guess which one) a little bit of a garbage dump (for a "barely used" treadmill and an old refrigerator that would have worked great if a few parts were ever replaced, but the husband "never quite got to that").
Basically, the wife explained that she "wore down" her husband over several years until he agreed to the conversion of the garage to a room. (Does that sound familiar?) Then they started to create a plan, a budget, and finally a construction schedule.
Next, what are the steps for legally converting a garage to a room?
First, note that depending on your property's zoning and the regulations on the "setback" from your property lines, you may also be interested in building a new covered parking area: anything from a shaded carport to a detached addition of an enclosed garage. When you contact us, let us know all of your interests, from minor garage remodeling to a combined project of converting an old attached garage plus building a brand new big one.
For the actual conversion, the entire space needs to be "brought up to code" for an interior room. That can include a lot of steps.
Speaking of steps, one of the first common steps involves what you actually step on when walking: the floor. Here are two photos showing the raised subfloor on the left (which reduces the risk of flooding) and second the installation of new flooring (a "laminate wood" floor made by Hampton Bay). Also, in the photo on the right, note the new recessed lighting in the ceiling.
On the left is an "in progress" photo of the "bump out" that now encloses the new electric fireplace. As you can see in other photos, white paint was added to all of the wood paneling. (The interior design for the room is inspired by beach houses in the Jersey Shore genre, where the homeowners grew up, met each other, fell in love, and got married before moving here.)
The new room actually has several other "uneven" surfaces. On the right in the center of the photo vertically, you can see that the side wall also has a very slight "bump out" (of only a couple of inches).
What is the purpose of that? The original garage had an electrical fuse box on one side plus another access panel on the other side. To hide all of that without blocking access, the solution was these walls with "flush doors" (doors which are even with or "flush with" the wall and can pop open with a little pressure).
This next photo shows the back of the new family room. Besides featuring a small "breakfast" table, note these two other "essentials:" the big double window in the center of the photo was installed in to the old wall and the ceiling vent at the top center. As you would expect, that vent is connected to the central climate control system, which now extends in to what used to be a rather uncomfortable garage. By the way, there was also a fair amount of new insulation added to the walls behind the sheetrock (so that the room would pass inspection as interior space).
Thanks for browsing through this "gallery" of before, during, and after" photos of this garage converted to a family room! For more photo galleries of garage conversions, click here. Also, here is the source page for these photos:
before & after photos from converting a garage into a family room. To visit our main FAQs page (of "Frequently-Asked Questions" about garage conversions), click the next link below.
Are you just starting to plan a garage conversion? You can read our planning guide by clicking here: garage conversions: costs, codes, permits, etc. Next, contact us today to schedule your consultation.