Making Room for Mom
(AKA Converting a Garage into Living Space and Other Ways to Add a Bedroom)
We all know life is full of surprises. We can plan all we want but sometimes we’re still caught by surprise. One of the most common scenarios is when a family suddenly needs an extra bedroom in their home. Perhaps an ailing parent needs to move in or you’ve decided an au pair is the best childcare solution. Or maybe you’ve downsized but now an adult child needs to move back home. What do you do?
Below are our top suggestions for converting a garage into living space — and other ideas for adding that extra bedroom.
Converting a Garage into Living Space
To make a garage livable, the garage door must be replaced with an exterior wall, insulation must be installed, the floor must be made level with the rest of the house, and the entire space must be drywalled. Converting a garage to a living space costs between $15,000 to $20,000, depending on size (excluding plumbing work).
Putting Up a Wall
If you have a large room, consider dividing it into two smaller bedrooms with a non-load-bearing wall. Keep in mind, in order to be considered a bedroom, the new room must have a window. This common method of dividing a room is a fairly easy do-it-yourself project or a low-cost contractor job. The main issue is re-routing of electrical lines and changing overhead lighting, if necessary. These jobs should be done by a licensed electrician. Installing a new wall costs close to $2,000 (national average).
Converting a Living or Dining Room
Today’s homes often have vaulted rooms that while beautiful, never get used. These rooms present the perfect opportunity to repurpose the room into the living space you need. For example, if you have a living room that’s off the beaten path, you can easily create an extra bedroom. One of our clients converted her living room into a bedroom suite for her ailing parent. When it came time to sell the home, she converted it back into living space.
Finishing an Attic
You can easily create a guest suite by finishing an attic. Typically, a complete rehab involves installing insulation, ventilation, HVAC, drywall, paint, electric, flooring, stairways, windows, and a bathroom. The average national cost for such a renovation is $64,000 (as a rule of thumb, you should not invest more than 15% of your home’s value into converting your attic). For more info, click here.
Other Ideas For Adding a Bedroom
- Building on top of an existing garage
- Converting an addition into a bedroom
- Converting a basement or a loft
- Adding on to the back of your house
- Enclosing a porch or patio
The Bottom Line
There are countless ways to create extra living space in your home. From putting up a wall to create an extra bedroom to converting a garage into living space, there are options for every budget and lifestyle. With some creativity and work, it’s easy to make room for one more!
Thinking of making a move? Reach out today to talk it through.