Property Maintenance - Having A Garage Conversion

By: Carolyn Clayton

As our cars are starting to grow bigger it almost seems like our garages are growing smaller. A standard garage is approximately 150 square foot, which is a lot of extra space that, in most cases, is going unused.

It should be noted that a garage conversion does not involve a change of use and UK building regulations will only really apply if there are structural alterations involved or if the conversion affects controlled works such as drainage.

There is so much that can be done with an unused garage; you can turn it into another family room, a guest bedroom that has the option of having an en-suite or not, a playroom, an office or a study or a library, a kitchen or utility as well as either a dining room or a home cinema. The options open to you are really limitless, you can transform your garage into whatever you want to.

Things that should be kept in mind that you will need to ensure are planned into your garage conversion are things such as the window may need to be suitable for means of escape if the room formed is an inner room. Also there should be reasonable levels of ventilation and if any drainage will need to be considered, which is very important if the conversion is going to involve the inclusion of an en-suite.

There are certain aspects of a garage conversion that have to exist. It is essential that insulation is included. The walls and roof of a conversion need to be insulated. Also foundations must be provided to carry out additional masonry loads. The suitability of the garages existing foundation and floors will have to undergo checks, the reason for this is because they will need to match industry standards, especially if you have to add insulation to the walls of the garage.

Garage conversions are now the most popular form of conversions; they are a much cheaper alternative to moving or than building an extension on your existing property. If you have an unused garage then why not put it to use. You already have the structure, which is a blank canvas to become anything that you want it to be so put it to the best use that you possibly can.

More and more of us never use our garage for what it was actually intended and instead of having a wasted space you could create something unique that could have the potential to add value to your property. Often you won't actually need any planning permission but you will still have to comply with building regulations. Due to this it is important that you phone local planning department before you start any work. You will usually have no problems with this as in most cases you won't need any permission but you may face difficultly if your home is listed. Also you may be turned down in places where there is pressure on parking spaces such as areas of London.

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