Bring Your Garage Back to Life Again

Have you ever had those moments when you walked into your cluttered (or empty) garage and asked yourself, What could I do with this extra space? The answer is: You can do a whole lot! If you're pondering whether or not you should convert your garage into something other than wasted space, then quit pondering and start planning. If you need some help with some ideas, then that is the whole purpose of this article.

I'm worried that it will cost a lot of money.

It can be expensive, but it also can be quite affordable. If you are looking to become a superhero by night and want something like the Bat Cave, then yeah, look forward to spending Bruce Wayne money. Most of us don't have crime fighting (or super criminal) aspirations in mind, so you can expect the price of a professional garage conversion to cost anywhere from $5,000 to $20,000 depending on a number of factors.
 
Some readers may be thinking, If I am going to invest the money in converting my garage, how can I get a return on that investment? The ways you can turn your garage conversion into a profitable investment is countless. From turning your drab garage into a funky apartment to transforming it into a photo studio. You name it, and it has been done by other homeowners around the world.

Turning Your Garage Into a Cool Apartment 

A conversion job involving turning your garage into an apartment will take more money than other conversion ideas, not to mention a little more thought and work. Here is a quick checklist of things you should consider before choosing this route.
 
  • Obtaining the correct permits that allow you to remodel your garage. This won't be as difficult as obtaining a permit for an entirely new structure. Nevertheless, you need permits to add things to your garage to make it liveable. Plus, when the job is finished, you'll need to have inspectors give it a check over to be sure everything is safe and in working order.
  • Contact an architect to draw up a floor plan. The biggest thing to think about is the garage door. Do you want to totally remove it and turn it into a wall? Do you want to convert the door into a large stylish bay window? Or do you want to simply leave it as is? If you leave the door as is, you'll have to insulate it to keep the weather out. I would advise to totally change it so that it is more attractive for tenants. If you decide to keep it, at least make sure you do a basic maintenance, so it’s safe and presentable.
  • Usually, garages are designed sloped to allow water and other liquids to drain. But since you want to convert it, there is not need for that slope. Take a carpenter's level and check it for a slope. Usually, it won't take too much cement to level the floor out.
  • Depending on what your personal preferences are, you should refinish the garage floor to feel cozier and more inviting.
  • Get your future apartment connected to plumbing pipes and wire it for electrical outlets. Remember, the further these things are from the original wall of your home, the more expensive it will be. Try to put bathrooms and mini-kitchens nearer to the main wall
  • Figure out how you will cool and heat the new apartment space. You could either supply it with existing cooling and heating elements or simply furnish it with a space heater and a small window air conditioning unit.
  • If your garage is a multi-vehicle unit, you can build additional walls to create more rooms for the apartment.
 
Keep in mind that the quality of your new apartment will directly affect how much rent you can charge for it.

Turning Your Garage Into a Photo Studio

Why not turn your garage and hobby into an extra income. This idea is really exciting. Fine art photography is on the rise globally. In 2012, Forbes published an article showing that market for photography had risen 9.2 percent. In some cases, artistic photography pieces had sold for as much as $100,000. The need for great photography will never wane.
 
If you already have some photography equipment, then the actual garage transformation won't cost too much. Most camera work will take place with a backdrop and cleaned up with photo editing software, therefore there is no need to put as much work into remodeling as in the apartment idea. You can visit this site for a complete DYI guide to converting your garage into a photo studio.

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