Dec 12, 2012

Floor Plans for Garage to Apartment Conversion

Want to downsize but can't sell your current homeHere's an idea to consider.  Convert your garage into an apartment for yourself, then rent the rest of the house to someone else.  You might not be mortgage free, but someone else could be paying it for you in the form of rent.  Plus, it's already half done!  The walls and roof are in place, it has electricity, and the other hook-ups are already on the premises.

Incidentally, if you have a 24'x24' freestanding garage you want to convert to a two bedroom home, see my post on that by clicking here.

Years ago I considered converting a two car garage in my old house into an in-law apartment.  This is what the garage looked like from the outside.

The garage of my old Garrison Colonial house.

The exterior dimensions of my garage were about 20' x 28', making it about 560 square feet.  It already had two windows, two garage doors, one ordinary door to the back yard, another door that led to the family room, and a 5' x 2' portion of a masonry chimney that encroached into the space.  

The house was a Garrison Colonial, ubiquitous in my old town.  It's a common house type, so my plans may be easily adaptable to your house and its garage with minor changes.  

Here is a drawing of the garage itself, before I designed an apartment to go in it. 

Original 20 x 28 garage plan

The cross ties in the garage were at the same level as the ceiling joists in the adjacent family room, even though the garage slab was about 16" lower than the family room floor.  I planned to leave the slab in place and build a new floor platform in the garage apartment to match the family room floor height.  That would have created a space between the existing slab and the new floor to run mechanicals like plumbing, electrical, heating, and cooling in.

I may have been able to save money and precious floor space in the apartment by using the mechanicals in the basement of the existing house to supply heat and hot water to the apartment too.  If the system wasn't up to it, I still could have saved the floor space by putting the new mechanicals for the apartment in the basement.

This is one of the floor plans  I came up with for the space.  If I ever find the others I'll post them here too.

Floor plan for 560 square foot garage apartment.

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