No matter how modern your home’s facade is, if an old garage door is facing the curb, it’s hurting the appeal. Think about it: A garage door is bigger than your entry door, more noticeable than windows, and can easily show its age. Maybe that’s why replacing one has an impressive 93.8% return on investment.
If you’ve been asking yourself, “Is a garage remodel worth it?,” the answer is a resounding yes! Whether it’s a job that’s been on the to-do list for a while, you’re prepping your home to hit the market soon, or you’re turning to renovation as an alternative to competing in this hot housing market, now is the perfect time to do it! And that door? It’s only one of several garage renovation ideas that will have heads turning — for all the right reasons.
If I’m not just replacing the garage door, how do I completely remodel my garage?
Sure, when most people look at their garage and talk about making updates, they’re usually thinking about replacing the garage door. But, while that’s a worthwhile investment, there’s more you can do to give your garage a makeover. We’re talking a head-to-toe transformation — floors, walls, and anything else you want to add.
IMPORTANT NOTE: If you want to completely remodel your garage, consult a professional before you start making serious plans.
Unless you’re doing a smaller job, like a reorganization (more on that in a minute), a garage remodel is a serious job that involves more than a new coat of paint. We all want to save money on home projects, but fixing a bad DIY job is more expensive than doing it right the first time.
Your first item on the to-do list? Research remodeling expert options in your area and get at least two or three quotes for comparison. Then, once you’ve decided on a hire, talk to them about your garage goals. Maybe you’re thinking beyond storage and considering turning a garage into a living space, a garage gym, or a spare bedroom? Go through the wish list, then ask what’s possible. Together, you’ll create the perfect strategy for your goals and budget.
And speaking of budget…
How much does it cost to redesign a garage?
Wish list items typically don’t come cheap. According to Angi.com, a typical garage remodel costs approximately $14,200. But, like all home projects, the garage remodel cost depends on what you want your end result to be. For example, if you’re considering turning a garage into an apartment, you’re looking at upwards of $50,000 because of the structural, plumbing, and electrical considerations.
|Pro Tip: Even if your contractor gives you a knowledgeable budget, add 20% for unforeseen expenses, to be on the safe side.|
If a total overhaul wasn’t quite what you (or your bank account) had in mind, consider picking and choosing a few of the following garage remodel ideas to give your space a refresh.
Update the garage flooring
You may be thinking, “It’s just a garage floor, what else could possibly be done with it?” But the answer may surprise you. There are multiple ways to breathe new life into scuffed and dingy concrete garage floors, including:
- Concrete stain: If your garage has fairly new or untouched floors — and you plan to keep it that way — add a stain to the concrete to give it a marbleized look.
- Epoxy paint: Want to make your garage floors stain- and scratch-free? Add a coat of epoxy paint. Applied correctly, it’ll keep your floors looking new for the long haul, no matter how many times you drive over it or leak oil onto it.
- Concrete floor paint: You can’t smear your floors with regular wall paint, but there are oil and latex-based paints meant to go over a concrete surface. These paints can flake over time, though, so hang onto the cans and color names in case you need to make touch-ups every few years.
- Foam floor mats: If coating your floors with stains or paints isn’t what you had in mind, try interlocking foam tiles or mats for the flooring, or put them in the spots where you park your cars.
- Rubber floors: This is a wonderful option for workout fanatics who want to use their garage for an iron-pumping space. See other optimal garage gym flooring options on the PODS Blog.
- Carpet, tile, or hardwood: Flex your non-traditional muscles by adding a flooring material that’s more commonly used indoors. If you use your garage as a living space, workplace, or other non-car-housing location, this is an option that packs a sophisticated and sleek look.
|Q: If I’m updating my garage floors, where do I put my stuff?|
A: The garage is usually where we’d put things to get them out of the way while remodeling other rooms in the house. But where do we put the things that are in the garage during our garage remodel? In a PODS portable storage container. Keep it on site in your driveway so your things are out of the way (but close at hand). And when you’re done with your garage renovation, everything is so close that putting things back is a breeze.
Show your garage walls some attention — inside and out
If your garage walls are unfinished and uninsulated, addressing both is a great way to refresh your look and save on utility costs. Here’s a basic step-by-step:
- Put insulation inside your walls to trap heat and energy, preventing it from escaping your home. While you may not think of a garage as a room that requires climate control, it can be an energy-sucker, ultimately resulting in higher utility bills.
- Once the insulation is in place, add drywall if it’s not already there.
- If you really want to open up the space, make room for a new window or two.
- Once the foundational work is done, finish the job with a fresh coat of paint.
Maximize your storage
New floors, new walls, now what? Complete the look and amp up your garage’s square footage by taking advantage of some dynamic garage storage ideas.
- Buy or build a shelving system or cabinets: Storage racks and shelving can be purchased at home-improvement or bulk stores, but they’re also fairly simple to build.
- Implement vertical storage: Add pegboards, wall mounts, and hooks to your walls to make better use of some often-underutilized space. If you have a few bikes taking up room in your garage, install a vertical bike rack.
- Add ceiling storage: Looking for a little more storage space? Look up! Install one or two overhead garage storage racks for storing items you don’t use everyday, like holiday decor, out-of-season sporting equipment and more.
Finish the look with a new garage door
Now, let’s bring things full circle. We did say that there were projects beyond a garage door replacement, but we’d be remiss not to recommend replacing the door at all. There are so many options and styles to choose from, it can be intimidating making a final decision, though. Here are some tips to help you sort through the selection:
- Go for a style that compliments your home: If you live in a traditional home, an intricate design will stand out like a sore thumb. Opt for a panel or carriage-house model instead of something more contemporary. Most manufacturers will list their models on their websites, so do some perusing before making a decision.
- Remember that you get what you pay for: A door may seem more cost-efficient, but ask yourself if the savings are coming from fewer springs, lack of insulation, etc. These are functional shortcomings that could cost you more in the long run.
- Beware of wood: Wood garage doors are popular for a reason — they’re a lovely addition to most homes. But because of their natural finish, they’ll need more maintenance and attention than steel models.
Once you’re done with your garage remodel, it’s time to show off the finished result. Maybe host a garage sale to get rid of the things you don’t want to move back into your new space? That way, you can recoup some of those renovation costs! It’s a win-win!
LB Gabriel is a freelance writer who lives with her husband, daughter, and Golden Retriever in Memphis, TN. A frequent PODS Blog contributor, she’s a sucker for any tip she can find on downsizing, cutting clutter, or minimalist living. When she’s not on a deadline, you can find her on a tennis court or golf course.