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Old 07-30-2007, 12:16 PM
 
Location: Cary, NC
2,135 posts, read 5,222,244 times
Reputation: 1534

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Anyone done this? We plan on buying a house with a garage and roughly converting it into a rec room. The first thing we would do is add central air to the garage. Has anyone added this and how much did it cost? Other than that we wouldn't plan on doing much to it. We are keeping in mind that we would have to convert back to a garage to sell it (hopefully after many, many years). Don't even want to think about the next move! LOL! But I guess you always have to keep resale in mind when you do anything to your home.

Last edited by MAtoNC!; 07-30-2007 at 12:16 PM.. Reason: typo
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Old 07-30-2007, 12:27 PM
 
310 posts, read 1,196,660 times
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I have never done this myslef, however I know someone who covert his garage to a studio. It is not as easy as it seems. You will need to insulate the walls, new flooring, painting, AC, Heat, etc. My friend spent close to 40K for the converstion.
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Old 07-30-2007, 02:37 PM
 
Location: The Circle City. Sometimes NE of Bagdad.
12,150 posts, read 10,767,232 times
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I don't recommend the conversion for the reason you stated. Would look more professional if you could add a room to the house.
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Old 07-31-2007, 11:37 AM
 
284 posts, read 1,207,376 times
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We did this several years ago, and we love it!

We had our heat and air guy run another vent to the garage. Make sure your heat/ air unit is large enough to handle the extra square footage. You may need to put in a return air vent, so air can circulate. No big deal. Sorry, I don't remember the cost, but you can always get bids.

As far as construction, we came in from the garage door about a yard (give or take) and built a wall with a door. A box of sorts was built that went from the top of new wall to the ceiling, allowing the garage door to be opened. This is a popular way of enclosing the garage where we live, and it is nice that the walls can be removed so the rooms can be converted back to garages if the owner needs to sell.

There are options that are available to save money, too. I understand that sometimes it isn't practical for a family to add on to a home. It's nice for someone to have $40k to sink into a garage conversion project, but I can't image that it has to cost that much -- or that it should, especially since it won't be permanent. We didn't spend a fraction of that amount on our garage, and it is as usable and comfortable of a space as any room in our home. However, costs probably differ according to geographies.
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Old 01-05-2008, 01:38 PM
 
Location: Cary, NC
2,135 posts, read 5,222,244 times
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Anyone else?

I got a tip to use a seperate until for cooling/heating similar to what is used in hotel rooms. I was told it cost about $1000 (not including installation). That would take care of the climate control issue.

Quote:
As far as construction, we came in from the garage door about a yard (give or take) and built a wall with a door. A box of sorts was built that went from the top of new wall to the ceiling, allowing the garage door to be opened. This is a popular way of enclosing the garage where we live, and it is nice that the walls can be removed so the rooms can be converted back to garages if the owner needs to sell.
This is the way we would like to do it! So it does not affect the garage door being opened and closed.

The garage is already sheetrocked. So we would need one wall framed and put up and some kind of flooring.

Quote:
It's nice for someone to have $40k to sink into a garage conversion project, but I can't image that it has to cost that much -- or that it should, especially since it won't be permanent. We didn't spend a fraction of that amount on our garage, and it is as usable and comfortable of a space as any room in our home. However, costs probably differ according to geographies
. 40k! No way!
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Old 01-05-2008, 02:07 PM
 
14,199 posts, read 26,341,715 times
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Are you permitted to do it? I realize every area is different. I bought a home with a garage conversion and was required to make it a functioning garage. The city required one covered parking space per home and the layout was such that the only spot meeting the requirement was the garage. I knew this going in and got a much better deal on the property.

That being said, if you can do it and won't miss the parking, the cost is quite reasonable. You already have the "Shell" and all you need to do is finish it. The materials are quite reasonable, it is the labor that drives the cost up...

If you are thinking about temperature control, money on insulation is well spent and then add your drywall over the framing. I doubt the existing drywall has insulation behind it. The ceiling is a little more involved because the framing will no doubt have to be strengthened to support the weight of the finished ceiling... and this can be expensive when spanning 20 to 22 feet unless you already have a finished ceiling?

You can go with glue down carpet over the slab if moisture is not a problem and have you thought about windows? The Uniform Building Code generally specs 10% of the floor area to be windows with 5% able to open... exterior doors count... but, I don't think 16' garage doors do.

If you already have lighting and outlets... you should be OK.

Most Tax Assessor's differentiate between habitable space and non-habitable space by whether the space is heated and/or cooled...

Sounds like a fun way to add 400 to 500 square feet to your home.
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Old 01-05-2008, 04:45 PM
 
377 posts, read 1,076,675 times
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It also depends where you live. If there aren't any issues with buiding codes, you can just put an ac/heat unit in there, but depending on the outside temps, you might be wasting alot of money on electricity since there isn't any insulation barrier. Currently, if in the winters it's freezing cold in there or in the summers it's very hot, you might want to insulate the ceiling and walls plus garage door. Also you'd want to seal the garage door, to stop insects, etc from coming in. Also, look at your electrical outlets, because usually there's just one in a garage, so you might need to add some. Also, depending on how your driveway is sloped and the elevation of your garage floor, some people get water in their garages during rains. I'm assuming you already looked at this to make sure it isn't happening in your garage... but just thought I'd point it out.
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Old 01-05-2008, 10:31 PM
 
Location: N of citrus, S of decent corn
17,192 posts, read 20,203,102 times
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Why don't you just buy a different house with a family room? Where are you going to put your cars and your stuff?
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Old 01-06-2008, 12:10 AM
 
2,141 posts, read 5,406,527 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gentlearts View Post
Why don't you just buy a different house with a family room? Where are you going to put your cars and your stuff?
This is exactly what I was thinking. Does your house have a basement? It would be much better to buy a house with basement, make that a rec room and use the garage as a garage. Plus when you do sell, you won't have to undo the rec room back into a garage.
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Old 01-06-2008, 03:13 PM
 
Location: Jonquil City (aka Smyrna) Georgia- by Atlanta
16,249 posts, read 11,817,416 times
Reputation: 3587
You may want to check and see if you can do that. It is a no no here with most HOAs and some governments.
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