Converting Your Garage – What You Need To Know

With the arrival of the 'working from home' (WFM) phenomenon, there has been a distinct increase in the number of inquiries about garage conversions - turning the under-utilised part of your home into a bedroom or an additional living space. 

 

 A garage lined with shelves full of things stored at home including, tools, cleaning supplies, holiday decorations and sporting equipment.

It seems like an attractive option – you don’t need to extend the footprint of your home and it may be more cost effective than an extension.

 

But the project may not be as simple as you think and there are a few things to consider before embarking on this type of project;

 

 

  • Converting a garage into a living space, media room or a bedroom requires the space to be re-classified from a non-habitable to a habitable space so this means you will need to apply for a building consent.

 

  • Including a kitchenette and/or laundry in your garage conversion is a much bigger deal as it essentially becomes a separate dwelling. As a result, you will need to apply to the council for a resource consent in addition to building consent.

 

  • When it was first constructed, the garage will have been built to a different level to the rest of your house. So it will need to be brought up to the applicable NZ Building Code for habitable spaces – for example installation of building wrap and insulation, addition of a window(s) for ventilation and damp-proofing the floor.

 

  • Check the ceiling height of your garage - it must be a minimum of 2.1m from the finished floor to the finished ceiling to be turned into a habitable space.

 

  • Will you still have space to park vehicles? Under the Auckland Unitary Plan, the property must still have enough space to park a minimum of 2 cars so think carefully - you may need to make other adjustments to your property to meet this requirement.

 

It’s always best to consult a professional, such as MyHome Renovations, to determine whether a garage conversion is the best way to achieve your goals while keeping the safety and value of your home intact.  Feel free to contact us today to discuss.

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