If you’re lucky enough to have a garage attached to your house, then you should do everything that you can to get the most out of it! We understand that every garage is different, but regardless, the bigger the space, the greater the possibilities. It seems as though most people see their garage space as nothing more than a roof for their cars or a catch-all storage space for unwanted and unneeded items. We, however, see them as a great opportunity to add a new room to the house, start a new hobby, or create a comfortable work station or office. So don’t let your garage fall into disarray; check out our helpful guide to turn that space into a great place you’ll want to hang out in!
Know What You Want
A garage is a great place to take up a hobby. So before you get started on your garage transformation, figure out what you want to transform your garage space into. Do you have any particular hobbies like cars, woodworking, painting, biking, motorcycles, etc. that might be a good fit for a garage space? Once you decide what you’d like to do with your garage space, you can outline a plan of action and start taking steps to transform it into a whole new space.
Clear Out and Clean Up
Before you can start transforming your garage, you’ll need to clean it first! While it’s true that this may be the least fun part of the job, it’s probably the most crucial!
1. Clear out everything you can to see how big your garage space is. We know this step will be the toughest one to approach, but don’t let it turn you away. Just imagine all the great things that your garage can be transformed into, and use that as your motivation. If you’re still hesitant, make it a weekend project with a family member or best friend. Do your best to throw out and/or recycle anything you no longer need to give yourself as much freed up space as possible. Most likely you’ll be able to clear out and clean up your garage within a day.
2. Sweep, brush, vacuum, wash, and scrub away as much as you can. A clean slate is always best to work from in this situation. If your dream conversion doesn’t require the garage to be completely spotless – perhaps you simply desire the additional space to work on a hobby – then clean as much or as little as you’d like! But we’d recommend that you clean as much as you can – you’ll appreciate the difference!
3. Inspect your garage for any cracks, chips, or holes in the floor and walls. Note all the places that need repairing and rank them by importance of what you’d like to fix (if at all) first. Just know that it all begins at ground level with the concrete slab. A few small cracks or rough spots are okay, but if the surface is deeply pitted, visibly uneven, or has cracks more than a quarter-inch wide, patching or resurfacing is your first task.
Get a feel for the Layout
Short of having an architect dive into the blueprints of your garage, one of the best ways to get a feel for the floor plan is with a tape measure and a piece of graph paper. Draw it to scale and start creating!
1. How big is your garage? If you have the blueprints for your property, great! If not, do your best to get a rough estimate with a measuring tape. This will allow you to better visualize what you can do with the space. Note any windows or vents that might provide you with natural light and/or ventilation. This could come into play later on during the layout process.
2. How many cars, if any, do you plan on parking in your garage? Pull them in and tape-off the space that your vehicle(s) use and plan to work with the unused space around that.
Plan Your Space
What do you want your new garage space to accomplish? Is it going to house your motorcycles? Will it serve as a wood shop? Perhaps it’s going to be your band’s rehearsal space.
1. Plan your storage space. Prioritize where you’d like things to go and do your best to get things off of the floor. Consider adding hooks, shelves, racks, and bins to make your garage as clutter-free as possible.
2. Take note of any electrical outlets or lights available to you. You can never have too many outlets, which is why we’d recommend you invest in a few retractable extension cords. Better yet, if you have the means to hang them, you’ll find accessing them is much easier. Additionally, if you feel like your garage is under lit, consider installing a fluorescent light fixture. Not only are they affordable, a few well-placed fixtures can easily provide enough light for a one car garage.
3. If you consider yourself draft-savvy, we’d recommend that you draw your garage to scale and devise a layout. Mark spaces you plan to cordon off, such as areas where your vehicles, storage units, tools, machines and/or furniture will be. This will allow you to plan accordingly.
Move Back In – Your New Workshop/Office/Bedroom/Lounge Awaits You!
Once you feel like you have a good idea of how your garage is going to look, bring in the big items first and adjust the layout around them to give you maximum free space for other smaller, more mobile items.
From here it’s really all up to you. Move everything back into place and get settled in. Step back and marvel at the great job you’ve done turning your garage into a new, versatile room!