How to Change an Old Wooden Garage into a Beautiful Living Room? Important Things You Should Remember

Converting your wooden garage into a beautiful living space can add value to your property and provide extra room for your home’s living space. If you are thinking about converting your garage one of these days then it is important to think about the following considerations so that you end up with something that you can be proud of.


Designing & Space Planning

The internal area of most garages is known to be thinner and longer than what most people prefer for their personal rooms. So, for you to achieve a shape that’s more natural for your garage you should consider using block or stud walling. By simply using any of these two walling types you will be given the opportunity to convert your wooden garage into two rooms. In most cases, the second room that has been made is commonly used as a shower room or toilet. For others, using the second room as a storage room is a good option. To be able to transform your existing garage this way, what you need to do is to make a plan for it, draw what you think or refer to some of the beautifully-transformed garages in magazines and on the internet.

Planning Permission

Planning permission is necessary when you are looking forward to altering the structure of your home or building. Since you will be converting your wooden garage, it will be necessary to secure a planning permit from your local or city planning office. A planning permit may also be required if you live in a listed building or in a conservation area. Either way, a planning permit is what you need to secure, even when the project entails simple or minor modifications. Homes in newly-constructed estates sometimes require a planning permission, too.


However, if you have a standalone garage then it is more likely that you will be required to secure a ‘change its use or purpose’ permission especially when you are planning to convert your wooden garage into habitable rooms. Before going to the planning office in your locality, you can make a phone call first, so that you will be able to know about the things that you will have to bring with you when you need to personally secure the permit yourself.

Building & Construction Regulations

Changing your wooden garage into a habitable space simply means compliance with your locality’s building and construction regulations. This also includes the sending and delivery of the building notice to your council. When we say building regulations we are simply referring to the following where they usually apply: moisture proofing, ventilation, fireproofing, insulation, structural soundness and escape routes.  Prior to this, almost all design decisions should be taken into account.


When a garage is being divided this simply means that this equates with the creation of a new room or space and such space is subjected to building regulations that require ventilation and an escape route, which are separated from the main room. Replacing the door of the garage and other alterations are also subject to building regulations. The inspector would certainly come to your construction site and visually inspect doors, windows, foundations, fireproofing and many others before providing you with a certificate of completion.

Insulation & Damp Proofing

The insulation of a particular structure is commonly assessed by way of its U-value or the measurement of the structure’s heat escape from the square of the material per hour. This means that walls should be able to achieve a U-value of 0.35 watts per square metre and roofs should have a U-value of 0.16 watts per square metre if pitched or 0.25 per square metre if flat. The floor should have a U-value of 0.25 watts per square metre and windows should have 0.18 watts square metre. Additionally, damp proofing is commonly required in the floors and walls.

Plumbing & Wiring

Make it a point to conduct a thorough survey and inspection of the wiring and plumbing of your house and wooden garage.  Any kind of wall that you wish to pierce for the structure’s windows or doorways requires special attention. Be able to locate water outflows and soil outflows in case you wish to install a comfort room or toilet.

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The ceiling and walls of the garage should also be inspected in terms of its wiring. Planning to rewire the garage for electric radiators and lights will put additional strain on the main wiring of the household, which is commonly fused at one hundred amps. It is possible to install a main supply but you have to take note that the cost is variable. This also requires putting up a separate consumer unit.


Your garage’s existing floor may be sufficiently strong but it requires extra damp proofing as well as insulation so as to meet building and construction regulations. A concrete floor can be made but you have to add a damp proof layer between the two layers. A raised wooden floor can be built on top of the existing floor, requiring 150mm gap between the original floor and the joists.


If your wooden garage is integral to your house then its exterior walls should meet building regulations. If not, you should consider making a stud wall or a second block wall within the exterior wall. Insulation, water and power lines can be installed right behind this wall. Keep in mind that this will reduce the size of the space.


Windows & Doors

Your second room will require ventilation so as to meet building and construction regulations. It also needs a fire escape in order to comply with fire regulations. Windows should be 1/20 of the room’s floor area, 600mm base opening and a total area of not less than 0.45 square metres so as to meet building and fire regulations.

Finally, you need to have a completion certification as proof that the transformation of your wooden garage into a nice living space has met regulations.

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60 Minute Makeover
Rushton Primary School
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Wey House School