SketchUp has a massive library of over 2 million free user-created models to get you started in what they call the 3D Warehouse. You don’t have to re-invent the wheel… you can just download it! Need to add a garage door to your plans? It’s in there. How about a workbench? That’s in there, too, available to drag-n-drop right into your design. In fact, many of the items you’ll find you want to add to your own plan can be turned into plans themselves—like a homemade workbench.
Paint manufacturers have recognized these problems and have come to the rescue with new solutions. But a word of advice: If your garage floor sees heavy water leakage, if it's badly cracked or if it's damp and slimy all summer, don't apply any coating. In those cases, you're better off simply keeping it as clean as you can and then calling it quits.
Your garage remodeling project isn’t necessarily the easiest endeavor. Too often a homeowner will just forge ahead with a great idea and hope it turns our alright. Needless to say, this is not often the case, most remodels do not go easily. Even if you think of a good plan, it probably is missing something. Trust us, unless you are a professional contractor, you haven’t thought of everything. Our tips will make you look like you have done this a thousand times.
Like wood stains, masonry stains are less viscous than paints. They soak into the masonry and don't form a film the way paint does. Unlike film-forming coatings, stains won't make your garage floor feel like the deck of an aircraft carrier. Because of this, stains are somewhat more forgiving and easier to apply and reapply as they wear off and become dirty. One of the oldest (perhaps the oldest) masonry stains available is H&C, now owned by Sherwin-Williams and sold at local paint stores. This venerable brand has been used in the Southern U.S. for many years. It's available in a wide range of colors and it can be tinted to any color you prefer. It's available in two formulations: a solvent-base (that is unavailable in California) and a waterborne acrylic available nationwide. The solvent-based formulation is the tougher one, so if you have both available, choose the stronger route unless you're very sensitive to solvent fumes.
A garage remodel is usually much cheaper than a home renovation because the foundation, roof, and walls are already built. Many garages also have electrical and plumbing installed to some extent. The actual cost of a garage remodeling project, however, depends on what the renovated space will be used for. While a new home gym won't require much in the way of amenities, converting a garage to an office, apartment, or bedroom requires adding significantly more creature comforts.
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.
Dream Construction, Joe R and his team, were friendly, responsive, and knowledgable about the remodel. Permits were acquired for the work and Joe supervised the foundation leveling necessary to repair the old remodel. He helped us determine what we needed to make our house more energy efficient. His work has saved us hundreds of dollars in energy bills! Great experience.
Flooring: Concrete slabs are cold, hard, and not very pretty to the eyes. Even if you’re on a tight budget, installing new floors during your garage conversion could be worth your while in terms of comfort and aesthetics. Vinyl flooring is one of the more cost-effective options and is available in many different designs made to look like wood, tile, or natural stone. If the space is framed in and moisture isn’t a concern, carpet is also a viable option for softer flooring as long as insulation occurs beforehand.
It’s often not enough to just make sure your garage doesn’t look bad. Sometimes you need to use this space to add some style or emphasis to your home to help it stand out from the crowd. Your first step is to look around your neighborhood at comparable properties. Look and see what they have done with theirs. The goal is to outdo your neighbors, but only just so much. You don’t want to price yourself over the market. Some upgrade options to consider are;
The cost of installing five windows falls somewhere around $5,000, or about $1,000 per window. If your garage doesn't have any windows, plan to add at least one. This is especially important if you want to list it as a bedroom or rent it out. You'll need an egress window big enough for a person to escape through in case of a fire. Egress windows average about $3,500.
SketchUp has a massive library of over 2 million free user-created models to get you started in what they call the 3D Warehouse. You don’t have to re-invent the wheel… you can just download it! Need to add a garage door to your plans? It’s in there. How about a workbench? That’s in there, too, available to drag-n-drop right into your design. In fact, many of the items you’ll find you want to add to your own plan can be turned into plans themselves—like a homemade workbench.
Most unfinished garages have the bare minimum of outlets and lights, so you’ll want to add a few. And in some cases, you’ll have to reroute wiring that’s attached to the face of studs or the underside of ceiling framing. We had to reroute phone wires, door opener control wires and plastic-sheathed cable in our garage. Remove surface-mounted wiring and move it into the stud space, or reroute it over the top of the ceiling joists or trusses.

Windows are important features when considering garage remodeling costs. Garage windows should be checked and replaced, if necessary, during any garage remodeling project. Not only are garage windows susceptible to the elements, but they also provide intruders another way into the home. Check for drafts, broken window locks and consider using metal cages around the windows for increased safety.


With its 3D Warehouse and simple user interface, you can certainly be on your way to designing a SketchUp project within minutes. However, If you’re a newbie or have a more complex vision, SketchUp’s own learning center is a great place to start, with several handy video tutorials. There are also lots of user-created SketchUp tutorial videos on YouTube. And if you’re really serious, there are third-party SketchUp training programs available, too.
Unlike many other home remodeling projects, it’s very easy to tell when you need to replace your garage door spring; your overhead garage door won’t open or perhaps more obvious, the weight of the door is off. When your spring is working correctly, you should be able to manually lift the garage door very easily. Likewise, when you open it, the garage door should not move and stay where you left it. If the garage door is very heavy or it closes as soon as you let go, then you need a new spring.
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