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4 Things to Consider Before You Commit to a Garage Addition

filed under: Real Estate Tips and Trends posted on October 10th, 2013

Whether you want extra space for home storage or your personal fleet of cars, a bump-out garage addition can be a compelling renovation for George Iverson George manages his own interior design company and website about home building and of all sizes. The average garage addition comes with a price tag of $48,806, however, and, on average, you can expect to recoup $31,091 of that cost when you resell your home, reports Remodeling Magazine. If you opt to go ahead with a garage addition, use these four tips to plan the job:

DIY or Hire Out

While you may think you’ll save money doing this project yourself, that isn’t always the case. If you botch the job, you’ll need to spend more hiring someone to fix it. Even if you’re a weekend warrior when it comes to DIY, use caution if you don’t have the skills or familiarity with this type of project. The National Association of the Remodeling Industry recommends you ask yourself if you have the patience, persistence, physical skill, quality level and time for the project before committing to DIY. If it would take a contractor a week and you estimate completing the project in three months, it may make more sense to hire someone.


If you lack the proper tools for this job, such as a plate compactor to compress the earth for your concrete garage flooring, you’ll need to rent them. Think about where you’ll store this equipment for the duration of the rental time. Can it sit in your driveway exposed to the elements? Can you store it in the basement? If you cannot rent needed equipment form a local hardware store, you’ll need to locate a company that offers B2C rental. If you’re working with a contractor, they may have access to a wider variety of equipment across price points, netting you a cost savings over B2C rental. Rental of construction equipment at Neff Rental, for example, is B2B only.

The Family Buy-In

If you hire a contractor, you’ll have a virtual stranger hanging around your home until the project is completed. If you do this job yourself, your home might be a mess for weeks or months on end, especially if the project takes longer than you anticipated, as many DIY projects do. Before you commit to a garage addition, get family buy-in for your project. If your kids know they can store sports equipment in the garage and your spouse knows that holiday items can go there, you’ll have an easier time disrupting the family’s lifestyle for your addition.

Check With the City

You to have a building permit to add on a garage in many communities. Make a call to your city’s building department to see whether you need a permit, then follow the application process. Once you have approval, you can move ahead. Note that you’ll also need to call 811 or DigSafe a few days before you begin work to have the location of underground utility lines marked. This helps to ensure that you don’t hit underground utility lines, causing a gas leak.

George Iverson
George manages his own interior design company and website about home building and decorating.

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