Corey Shamley, Other/Just Looking in 98115

Thoughts on converting an attached garage to livable space?

Asked by Corey Shamley, 98115 Mon Jun 8, 2009

I am in the beginning steps of remodeling an as-yet unfinished basement. As part of the process, I'm considering incorporating the existing attached garage space and remodeling it so that it will be storage space and potentially a children's play room.

It's also important to note that I have a detached garage in the backyard. The detached garage is very old and will need to be replaced, but it could technically hold a car.

My question is: if I were to remove the existing attached garage, am I going to do myself a disservice when it comes time to sell my home? We expect to live in the home for at least the next 5-8 years, and would be certain to create a lot of storage space (since that's primarily how the garage is utilized now) so we don't run out of room. I've been told that re-purposing garages can hurt resale, but I would think that the other garage would alleviate that problem.

Any advice is appreciated!

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deansandra’s answer
To answer just your question, you will get more value from that space in your square footage than you would have from the current garage. I realize I am the only one with this opinion so far. I am not an agent but I am a loan officer and I have seen thousands of appraisals and I have noticed how they adjust for values and the above is correct from that standpoint. Whether the appraised value is your "value" may be up to debate but I would think that would be the most accurate analysis since so many things are based on this.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Dec 30, 2009
Thumbs down. Garages are nice, and rooms converted from garages are not.

Every time I see one of these I always think about how much work it would take to turn it back to the way it is supposed to be.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 8, 2009
When it comes to resale would anyone "technically" or otherwise consider using the detached garage to park their car? If you don't use it, probably no one else will. I agree with Kary's comments - don't do it. I have seen very, very few garage conversions that really that were attractive and didn't look like a garage conversion.
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0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 8, 2009
Corey every buyer I have worked with including some condo/townhome buyers ALL want a usable garage. It is my opinion that taking away your garage could impact the value of your home should you try to sell it. If you decide to proceed with the conversion, try doing something that could easily be converted back. I have friends who put down indoor/outdoor carpet, ran a heat duct for heat, put up a simple wall using about 1/4 of a bay to enclose the furnace, water heater and other garage stuff and this created a HUGE recroom in the other 2.5 bays for the kids, but can be converted back easily at anytime. I think they might have let the kids paint something really wild too, which only needs fresh paint to return to original garage walls.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 8, 2009
Good point by Patrick on the aesthetics. It can be hard to make a home look good after converting a garage. Make sure that there's a lot of thought going into that.

If you're definitely going to rebuild the detached garage, and you can finish the exterior of the attached garage to look likea planned design and not a conversion, it might be worth doing. If not, it's going to be a hindrance at resale.
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0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 8, 2009
Oh yeah, I forgot to mention....I've got some buyers looking at homes and they specifically do NOT want to see any homes with anything less than a 2 car garage. Of course, not all buyers are like this, but there definately are some out there...
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 8, 2009
You didn't say where your house is, but a good idea is to take a look at what the other houses in your neighborhood are like. For instance, if your neighbors all have a garage and parking is limited on your street, you've just made a huge mistake. Once your remodel is done, you generally want to have at the very minimum, 1 quality covered garage space, not something that could "technically" hold a car. You also have to consider how your home will look with the garage "removed." Houses that have a room where a garage should obviously be can be very hard to sell.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 8, 2009
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