Tips for Renovating Your Garage
Your garage can be so much more than a cluttered storage bin or shelter for your car, tools, and outdoor equipment. The following renovation ideas will help you reinvent your garage and make the most out of its space.
Start with the basics
No matter how you choose to renovate your garage — organized storage, workstation, living space, or entertainment area — you’ll want to improve the bones of the space. This means updating electrical systems, adding insulation, and installing drywall, advises The Spruce writer Lee Wallender. Updating the flooring will add to the look and feel of your new space. Popular choices include luxury vinyl plank, laminate flooring, tile, and engineered wood, he adds.
If you still want your garage to serve its traditional purpose — protecting your car — but with more functionality, get in the zone. Bob Vila writer Michael Franco suggests dividing your space into designated areas or “zones” that cater to your many needs for the space. He says you can have a zone for your car, a workstation, and an area for relaxing or having fun.
To zone your garage into a multipurpose space, first start by organizing each area. This will help create the zones naturally. Use attractive cabinets or tool chests to conceal garage items such as tools, outdoor equipment, and gardening supplies. If you have the space and want to separate the zones visually, Franco suggests using different types of partitions. “You can build a unique screen by hinging together a collection of mismatched vintage doors, create an industrial look by using chain-link or other metallic fencing, or suspend corrugated steel panels from chains connected to the ceiling,” he adds.
Is your hobby or side gig suffering due to a lack of space? When properly outfitted, your garage can be a comfortable and efficient workshop. You’ll want a sizable workbench, table, or work surface that allows you to spread out your materials and finish your projects, notes Franco. “Install adequate lighting, run enough outlets to handle your power tools, and consider on-wall open storage to make your tools visible but neat,” he adds. “A shop vac or wall-mounted vacuum system provides quick and easy clean up after projects are done.”
Play or living area
If your kids are running out of space for their toys or you want a designated area for their friends to congregate so your house stays clutter-free, your garage can offer the extra square footage you crave. It can also serve as a kid-free zone so you can entertain your friends or as another bedroom that requires no major structural changes to your existing home. But, creating a living space out of your garage requires more than just storage solutions. In addition to updating electrical systems and adding insulation and drywall, you may need to add windows to bring in more natural light, replace the garage door with a real door if necessary, and add a heat source to help keep everyone comfortable year-round, according to Wallender. “Provide heating to maintain 70 degrees F. Retrofit heating options include extending existing central heating ductwork and installing electric baseboard or fan-driven wall heaters,” he notes.
Before you embark on a garage renovation, be sure to find out what permits you may need to complete the project. A clear plan, a detailed budget, and some creativity will help you transform your garage into the space you need and want.
This article is presented by Jack Demmer Ford.