Garage Conversion Costs
Material Costs, Labour Fees and Time Frame Estimates for a Garage Conversion
Costs and Other Consideration for a Garage Conversion
To ensure that the prices we provide are as accurate as possible, we connected with large and small businesses and gathered information from a few quotation tools on the web to come up with the figures we have.
Note that costs for garage conversions can greatly vary depending on where you are in the UK. Even minor specifications can spell a difference in the way the prices fluctuate. It is best to secure quotes from at least three garage contractors before picking one. In terms of materials to be used for a garage conversion, average costs will depend on several things.
For instance, the overall quality, how big is the garage, and the specific purpose you wish to convert the garage into. Material costs should cover everything you need including insulation, flooring, lighting, heating, windows, doors, and decorating.
Most builders will charge about £150 as their daily rate. They will seldom work on their own for a project like this so, they will at least have two or three more people working with them. Note too that a garage conversion will require more than just one trade to complete. Among the possible trades people you need include:
• Builder – You need one to iron out possible structural issues before starting the project.
• Electrician – For the installation of socket, lights, and cabling.
• Plumber or heating engineer – Responsible for the installation of radiators
• Flooring specialist – To ensure that flooring installation is done right.
• Joiner – To help build the encasement for the boiler and the metre.
• Decorator and plasterer -For proper finishing of the walls and the ceiling.
It is this need for many different tradesmen that might make it a challenge in organisation. This is also the reason that the project might have the tendency to drag on for a few weeks. Some people would rather tap the services of a larger contractor who has all the necessary tradesmen at their disposal. This would be more costly but if you’re trying to get the project finished faster, this is the best option.
For a simple garage conversion, the individual costs could run up to £10,000. Half of the costs will pay for the materials. About £4500 will cover the tradesmen fees and the remaining £500 is spent on waste removal.
Labour Fees and Estimate Time Frames
A variety of tradesmen are needed to convert a garage. It is common for these specialists to charge a daily rate with most traders averaging £70 to £250. Be sure to factor that into your budget allocation.
Job Details for a Garage Conversion
Converting your garage is often seen as a practical and affordable means of adding more space to your property. The costs involved in garage conversion is seen as a more attractive option especially when one were to consider the costs involved when moving to a bigger place.
With house prices continually rising, it is hardly a surprise that more property owners are going to conversion route. Besides, if you haven’t really been using your garage in the first place, instead of just leaving it as a junk room, converting it into a more valuable space would be more practical.
If you happen to have a garage with double the space, you can still leave half untouched so you can still have a place to park your car. You just have to focus on the remaining half and convert into an additional home space. Garage conversions are generally cost-effective since the project doesn’t require new foundations to be laid out.
There isn’t even any need for you to add new walls either. For most homes, garages are already installed with cabling and electricity. That further reduces the conversion costs. When done right, a garage conversion is perfect at adding more to the overall value of a property.
Despite the minimal building costs for garage conversions, note that major alterations are required. Expect the garage door to be removed. This will then need to be blocked up or be replaced with the addition of a window.
Additional Costs to Consider
To get your garage converted into one comfortable living space, you’ll need windows and doors. How many you will choose to add will also affect the total cost. Generally, a single door and window can cost about £500. Most garages have floors that are either uneven or rough so there may be a need to pour new concrete to the space first before actual flooring is fitted in.
If you wish to convert the space into a living room or bedroom and electricity is already fitted into the space, all you’ll need is to add extra outlets. It is a different story if you plan on converting the space into a kitchen or a bathroom. You will require plumbing to be installed. Gas pipes will be required as well.
Once the room has all the basic structure put in place, new flooring and decorating will be needed. So, take note of these costs and have
them factored into your allocated budget.
Having your garage converted into an actual living space is most useful at maximising a space that is otherwise not really used efficiently. The project is not that complicated which might tempt avid DIY enthusiasts to try and take on.
However, despite the seemingly straightforward nature of the project as compared to an extension, it also involves various processes that may be a bit impractical for a DIYer to take on his own. The ventilation, fire escape, and insulation of the new space will need to conform to specific building regulations.
There is also a need to have the foundation checked so it will be sturdy enough to support the new structure that will be put in place. Damp proofing is also required.
One will have to consider all the approval and permits that are needed before any of the work will be done. It’s for these reasons that garage conversions are best left on the hands of the professionals.
When executed right, it can contribute considerably to the overall resale value of the property. Going the DIY route and ending with a botched project will only cause the property value to go down. This isn’t exactly a cheap project to begin with. You’ll be better off having the experts do the job for you.
Building Regulations, Party Wall Agreement, and Planning Permissions Garage conversions are often categorised as a right covered by permitted development. This means that there is no need to secure planning permission.
Still, it wouldn’t hurt to check the planning department in your locality to determine whether there isn’t indeed any need for one. Besides, paying for the necessary certificates signifying that this is a lawful development that you are carrying out by the local authority is always worth it.
There are certain garage conversion instances when planning permission may be necessary. Among these are:
• If your property is a listed structure
• If the conversion is going to extend the dimensions of your property beyond what has been
allowed under the right for permitted developments
• If there are restrictions by your local council regarding the parking reduction where you live
• The garage space is being converted for business purposes.
Any garage conversion will require the approval for building regulations. Notifying your local authority is highly advised. You may also use a contractor to assist you in getting the works self-certified. To ensure that building regulations have been complied with, the converted living space needs to be:
• Sound structurally and must also have proper damp-proofing
• Must be properly insulated from the walls to the roof to ensure its energy efficiency
• Moisture-proofed while having the necessary amount of ventilation
• Properly fireproofed and should have proper fire exits
• Tested for electrical safety by checking every single electric in the premises.
Only after the inspector is happy with the state of things will he issue the completion certificate. You can expect it within 28 days. Do check with the local council first before commencing any building work.
Conversions that will require work on structures that another property adjoining yours also shares with you will take into consideration the Party Wall Act.
This means that you’ll need your neighbours to agree to a party wall act. The only exception to this is when a waiver has been signed. Party wall agreements are often charged a fee of £750.
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Is an architect necessary?
A garage conversion can be quite complex and whilst you always have the choice to DIY the job, it may not be practical. It’s more ideal to seek advice from a building contractor or an architect and to always confer with the building control department in your local council before commencing any work. If you do decide to take this on as a DIY project, make sure that the plans will at least be drawn by an architect.
It should detail the following:
- Ceilings and walls
- Foundations to ensure that they’re able to handle the extra weight added by the floors
- Damp-proofing courses
- Having the door opening filled in
- Insulation and weatherproofing
- Ventilation and windows
Structural strength, along with details determining whether there is enough structural support for additional installation and new roof. To secure such plans, you’ll likely need to pay around £500-£1000. This figure will go up though if there is a need for a structural engineer to visit the location.
Garage conversion vs conservatory
When looking into the possibility of adding more space to your home, you’ll probably have to choose between a converting your garage or a conservatory. Both these choices have their upsides and downsides so it helps to look into these factors first before making a decision. Converting an existing garage can lead to adding about 10% to your property’s overall value when done right.
If you’re just converting a current garage without doing any extension, planning permission is no longer necessary. You’ll still have to conform to structural regulations on how garages can be converted into living spaces.
Conservatories may also be built without any need for planning permission. However, a notice will have to be sent to the local council and building regulations must be adhered to as well.
Among the possible downsides to installing a conservatory are:
- They can be too warm at summertime as a result of the glass materials
- They are too cold in the winter as they’re usually not properly insulated
- Requires more maintenance, cleaning and upkeep
You might end up picking the wrong conservatory for your home as a result of the wide array of choices in the market.
Where building regulations and planning goes, both these projects aren’t that different. A garage conversion will result in a warmer living space but will leave you garden space intact. Conservatories may be colder in winter but they will make your space look brighter. Choosing to install one means you’ll still have a fully intact garage.
Garage conversion vs extension
Garage conversions are usually favoured by those looking for more cost-effective means to increase the living space in their homes. The fact that it usually doesn’t involve planning complications makes it even more ideal. If you have one of those double garages, you can just choose to convert half and leave the other as-is for your car parking needs. A garage conversion may be better than an extension because:
- You’ll have your garden space intact
- It is cheaper
- You’re maximising an otherwise neglected space
- It can be accomplished at a much shorter time.
The costs for garage conversions are lower than the ones associated with the installation of an extension. You can save a lot on the walls and foundations since your garage will already have them in place. Your garage may also be fitted in with power and plumbing as well which further reduces the overall costs.
An extension is the better choice when you have a large garden space and would want an equally larger living space. However, if what you want is just an annexe or a small room, preserving the existing garden space may be more ideal by going the less expensive route via a garage conversion.
Annexe or granny flat
If you have an elderly family member that you think is going to benefit from being under your roof, an annexe may be a worthy project to pursue. You’d want this loved one to still have independence and privacy while being under your care and a garage conversion into a flat may be an idea worth pursuing.
The addition of the annexe to your property will be hitting two birds with just a single stone. The project will help increase your property value and it will also allow you to keep a better eye on your senior loved one instead of getting them to stay in some senior home. Homes that have a self-contained annexe are no longer burdened with council taxes too.
The government supports this too. In fact, as a way for families to want to stay together in a single roof, council tax discounts are offered to homes with annexes for seniors.
These properties will also avoid having to deal with increases in stamp duty. The rationale behind is that arrangements like these are beneficial not only to the social care system but also to the NHS especially during these times when the purse strings are tight.
People do have to remember though that converting your garage into an annexe for an elderly loved one, pondering it through and through is very important. Converting an unused garage into a flat for seniors is ideal for those that would rather avoid the disruptions and costs of adding an extension.
This lets you create an extension for an elderly loved one quickly. It is cost-effective and is perfect if you do not want your senior loved one to live in care homes. The ground floor location of garages makes them even more ideal especially for those elderly that might
require extra attention and assistance. A loft conversion may be ideal for adding more space to your home but in terms of an elderly annexe, it isn’t that practical. Before making a decision, it doesn’t hurt to discuss how the expenses are going to be covered.
Figure out who will cover the bills, who will take care of the garden, and whose responsibility the maintenance, locks, privacy and other concerns are going to be. You may need to get legal advice if both would prefer not to sell. You’ll also need to seek out legal remedies if a relationship falls apart or ends or in divorce.