I stink at drawing. So pencil and paper isn’t an option for me when working to design my perfect garage (which I’ll unveil at some point in the future). Instead, I’ve been using SketchUp Make —a free 3D modeling software program, once owned by Google, that’s been around for almost 20 years now. And while CAD-style programs can be quite intimidating, SketchUp is super-easy to use and has a huge active community made up of all kinds of people—from architects and interior designers to woodworkers and other creators.
Naturally, you have to know the cost of these things in order to calculate what you can afford to spend. That’s also the best way to ensure that you don’t stumble across any unwelcome surprises during the execution of your project. Using our free estimate for your garage remodel will help you create a realistic budget that actually meets your needs!
The cost to finish a garage is often less than the cost of a remodel, coming in at an average of about $5,000. Finishes should factor high on your list of materials before you ever begin your garage conversion. The answers to the following questions will go far in determining your budget. Low-end finishes will save you big bucks at the time of renovation, but high-end finishes will help recoup your ROI when it comes time to sell.

Larger projects might entail hiring an architect or structural engineer. If you're having trouble deciding on the specifics of a garage remodel, consider hiring an interior designer. Costs for these professionals vary depending on their experience and level of involvement in the project; you could pay a few hundred dollars for a one-time consultation or several thousand dollars for beginning to end involvement.
For those searching for more room when you decide to remodel two spaces come quickly to mind. These are your garage and your attic. Both have benefits and drawbacks as far as conversion to a bedroom or usable space goes. It is a bit more easily converted than your attic and can result in a beautiful living space. Before you begin work you should know the real garage remodeling costs involved. Converting your garage to a bedroom requires certain elements that are not necessary for a family room. When converting your garage to a bedroom you will need to have a window that serves as a secondary escape route, and a closet. There are additional requirements by code, but these are the main ones to consider.
Most rough-framed garages aren’t ready for drywall. Your garage may be missing studs at the corners and attachment points for the ceiling drywall. To see where framing members may be missing, inspect inside corners where walls meet and where the walls meet the ceiling. These are the most common areas needing additional framing. These two photos show how to add ceiling blocking.
Not every home owner has a few hundred thousand dollars to put towards renovations. Some of us need to save and therefore need to know how to remodel a garage on a budget. The need to make every dollar count means you need to make smart choices. Smart choices require having the best information. We’ve put together the best tips from across the internet for you.
The first step is often fixing a cracked floor or leveling it, and sometimes even staining it to make it look more attractive; the repairs cost $500-$12,500, and stains range from $2 to $10 per square foot. Drywall is typically put up, which costs from $1 to $2 per square foot. Adding boards for a storage space above the garage typically costs about $2 per square foot.
Forty-something years later, Michael still doesn't' know what he wants to do if he grows up. Raised around cars and trained in diesel mechanics, Michael has owned a successful detail shop, developed and sold software, led a K-9 SAR team, ridden the dot-com wave as a marketing & PR executive, led digital strategy teams at both large and small agencies, and now this. He digs Jeeps, off-road racing, football, photography, writing, making EDM, cranking metal, PC gaming, and a plethora of other contradictory things.
And you really need your investments protected, but you just don’t have the funds to build some of these other options. Well, don’t give up hope. This video shows you how to build a pretty decent structure that will do what you need it to do for basically no money. And honestly, if you have the materials on hand it could actually be built for free.
When it comes to garage insulation, homeowners have two options. Foil insulation (pictured above), tends to look like foil, but the inside is usually laced with heavy-duty polyethylene. The polyethylene is usually used in rigid sheets that are placed inside the cavities of your garage door. Once placed onto the garage, the polyethylene expands to fit into place.
A full-scale apartment or guest house will take you to the top of your budget and beyond at an average between $15,000 to $30,000. You'll need to make all the upgrades mentioned for a family room, along with a separate bath and kitchen. You'll need to run a gas line or a 220 outlet for the stove. You'll also want a private entrance for your apartment, which usually entails adding a fire door.
Determine needs vs wants: There is always a difference between what you WANT in your garage, and what you NEED. While you may want a high end entertainment complex, do you need it? Before you begin your project sit down and make a list of needs, and wants. By creating a prioritized list you keep yourself from overspending. Once you have your needs addressed, throw in a few wants.
Forty-something years later, Michael still doesn't' know what he wants to do if he grows up. Raised around cars and trained in diesel mechanics, Michael has owned a successful detail shop, developed and sold software, led a K-9 SAR team, ridden the dot-com wave as a marketing & PR executive, led digital strategy teams at both large and small agencies, and now this. He digs Jeeps, off-road racing, football, photography, writing, making EDM, cranking metal, PC gaming, and a plethora of other contradictory things.
Garages have minimal insulation, so if you’re renovating your garage to turn it into an office or family room, you’ll certainly need to add insulation and HVAC. Your insulation pro will start with the ceilings and floors. Beyond that, they may or may not choose to add insulated garage doors (if doors are being kept). All in all, adding new HVAC and insulation can add $2,000 to $3,000 to your garage remodel cost.
On the exterior we remove the siding on the front of the garage and installed new hardboard siding that matched the original on the building. Electrically we removed and relocated existing lights and added a ceiling fan as well as recessed lighting. Some additional outlets and network wiring was installed then connected to the home and panel box. The interior was insulated in areas such as the ceiling, stairwell and miscellaneous sections of the walls. We laminated (overlay) the existing sheetrock with 3/8″ wallboard on the sidewalls and stairwell and 1/2″ for the ceiling.
A garage can be so much more than a messy catch-all for items that don’t fit inside the home. Through a remodel, it can be made into an organized storage unit or a workshop, or simply made more functional, with room for at least one car. Turning a standard 600-square-foot, two-car garage into a well-organized, tidy space is less expensive than most remodeling projects. Because a garage already has a floor, walls and a roof, the primary tasks are finishing the framed walls and adding organizational systems.
The floors of your new space are a unique issue. Your garage is built with drainage in mind. Code requirements mandate that the concrete slab has a slope built into it to ensure water drains away from the home. The installation of the subfloor will correct the slope issue of your floor. Using a subfloor allows your new space to be converted back into a garage should the next home owner wish to do so.

One of the main ways to succeed on a budget is to be organized and have a good plan. Having a good plan means knowing exactly what you want out of it. This requires you to decide everything from paint colors to trim style before the first nail is driven. Having a well thought out plan means knowing where you are getting materials from, and when they will be delivered. This plan is the bedrock that your budget friendly remodel will rest on.
If you have an existing garage in place, but no walls, floor, ceiling or finishes in place, the cost to finish your garage will be much less expensive than $10,000. Oftentimes, finished a garage entails adding a few beams or drywall. Contractors can install wooden or steal beams for a few thousand dollars. In addition, according to our drywall installation cost guide, you can purchase drywall for at little as $0.30/sf. If you hire a general contractor to install the drywall, expect to pay another $1,000. Overall, the cost to finish a garage should not exceed $5,000.
There are a few different options when it comes to garage renovation basics, but finishing materials provide the most options and the most flexibility. Flooring alone offers a dozen or so choices, from inexpensive laminate and carpet to elegant hardwood and natural stone. A great discrepancy in quality (and therefore costs) also exists between different types of cabinets, countertops, light fixtures, plumbing fixtures, appliances, wall finishes, ceilings, windows, doors, molding, heating systems, and much more. And of course, depending on your intended use for the room, you'll need to buy furniture, appliances, curtains, decorations, and all the other complimentary odds and ends.
Leaky doors and windows let in uncomfortable drafts and increase heating and cooling costs. Check your garage service door to be sure it has good weather stripping and a threshold that seals tightly to the bottom of the door. In most cases, if your service door is missing a threshold and weather stripping, it’s more efficient to replace the door with a new, weather-tight version. You can buy an inexpensive prehung metal exterior door at home centers and lumberyards.
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