Experts agree that converting your garage into an office space can add around 10% to the overall value of your property. With the average house, in the UK, costing approximately £225,000 and the average cost of a conversion costing somewhere in the region of £8000, it is easy to see why taking on such a project can make good sense.
If you are not planning to sell your property, then a conversion will give you more living space without the cost and inconvenience of relocating.
Here we examine some of the steps you will need to follow if you want to take the plunge and convert your garage into an office.
Planning Permission and Design
Generally speaking, you will not need planning permission in order to covert the garage into an office, however, there are exceptions. If you live in a listed building, a conservation area or you plan to alter the structure of the garage the you will need to apply for permission.
Once you have the all clear to get started, the next thing you will need to do is think about the design. The internal space of a garage tends to smaller than most other rooms in a house, so planning your renovation design on paper is a good way to document your blueprint of your ideal garage design.
When you have a clear vision of how you want the layout of the office to look, you can then move on to thinking about the materials you will use to convert your garage.
A Structurally Sound Foundation
The first materials you are likely to need are those which will help ensure that the structure of the garage is structurally sound. Damp proofing and ventilation are two of the major considerations, then add to that the possibility of fitting windows and considering an escape route should there be a need to evacuate quickly.
You will, of course, also want to build a wall where the garage door currently stands and here it is wise to make sure building regulations are followed closely.
A structurally sound shell will act as a great blank canvas from which you can begin work on the interior design of the space.
The Electricity Supply and Connectivity
Making sure you have all the electricity you need in an office space is paramount to its success. In addition, you may also want to consider factors such as internet and satellite/cable access. Modern offices are also media hubs and so getting this right before you start plastering walls and putting down flooring can save headaches further down the line.
Walls, Floors, and Ceilings
With the infrastructure of the office set in stone, you can get on and begin the final stages of the conversion. Start with the ceilings and walls, putting up plaster boards and then having them skimmed.
Then move on to the flooring, most offices use some kind of laminate flooring as this makes it easier to move around on an office chair. Care and effort at this stage will pay dividends as it will make for a much nicer finish to your decorating if the job is done well.
A Lick of Paint
Begin to decorate the office by painting the walls and ceiling, light airy colors are most popular as they are calming and add to the sense of space. To make the office look a little more dynamic add a splash of color here and there – an accent wall, a painting or photographs can be very effective.
When it comes to furnishings, think practically and don’t clutter the office – a cluttered space can be stressful to be in. A comfortable office chair, desk, and some simple storage may all that is required in the short term. You can then live in the space a little before making any further decisions.
With the office space complete, you can get on a run your empire, or at least give up the space to the kids so they can play computer games.
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