9 Ideas for Transforming Your Garage Into a Beautiful Living Space

Candace Nelson
Written by Candace Nelson
Updated February 11, 2022
Guest house in a backyard
Photo: Iriana Shiyan / Adobe Stock

No car? No problem! Make your garage the place to be with some guest room upgrades

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You don’t need a car to enjoy your garage. In fact, there are so many fun and unique ways you can transform your garage into a living space for you and your fam. Here are some ideas to get you started. 

Preparing to Convert Your Garage

Before you get crazy with an ideas and inspo board, you’ll want to make sure the converted garage is safe, comfortable, and up to code. Regulations vary by state, so check with your local building permits office or hire a local general contractor who can confirm what home addition building permits are required in your area.

You’ll want to think about heating or cooling needs, insulation, windows, and flooring before getting to the fun part: design.

Decide What to Do About the Door

One of the first decisions you’ll need to make is what to do about the garage door. If you live in an area that sees hot summer days or frigid winter nights, a standard garage door isn’t going to be effective in your new room. Consider swapping it out for some oversized, yet efficient windows or a nice set of French doors that can be opened wide for backyard parties.

What to Do With Your Converted Garage

1. Take It Beyond Basic

The main component of a guest space is a bed and set of towels, but when the guest room is the garage, you might want to take it up a notch. Consider a theme, a feature wall, or some hotel-worthy accessories.

2. Add Coziness

Bright stylish bedroom with big window
Photo: Photographee.eu / Adobe Stock

No one wants to feel like they’re sleeping in a garage, so add some cuddly textures to warm the space up. Consider some soft rugs, art on the walls, extra blankets, and maybe a few candles. If the garage floor is in place, offering slippers or cozy wool socks is a nice touch.

Don’t forget window coverings; there’s nothing more awkward than trying to change into jammies while avoiding a large undressed window.

3. Add a Kitchen

If you’re planning to rent your converted garage on a home share site, you might bring in more money if your guests have their own kitchen. Of course, it comes with additional expenses if you need to extend plumbing and purchase appliances.

4. Optimize Office Space

Bright minimalist home office space
Photo: Ivan Kulikov / Adobe Stock

Your guests might appreciate a place to set their laptop or write their postcards. But when they leave, you might like to go out there and get away from the family for a bit, too. Make sure you have enough outlets and space for a desk.

5. Save Space for You

Your guest quarters don’t have to take up the entire garage. You can still keep your lawnmower, yard games, and kayak collection out there. You can also accommodate a home office, art studio, or workout space. Just build a wall separating your space from the guest room.

You can also build an apartment above the garage and keep space for cars, workshops, or other needs.

Make It More of a Daytime Space

You might prefer to use your converted garage for entertaining. With doors or windows that can open wide, the space will get good ventilation to help keep everyone healthy during virus season.

1. Create a Teen Hangout

A pool table, video game area, or music space can draw your kids’ friends over. Add a snack station and they’ll never want to leave.

2. Play With Toy Room Ideas

Stylish and neat toy room
Photo: Africa Studio / Adobe Stock

For younger kids who could use a playroom with some ventilation, fill the space with art supplies, climbing toys, and anything messy you don’t want in the main house. Playdates are about to get epic!

3. Add a Snack Bar

With a huge, open window for serving, the garage can become an extension of your yard for outdoor parties–or a rain backup for those outdoor parties. Add a bathroom to your garage and guests will have no reason to mess up your house.

4. Make It a Theater

Game day at your house! With a big TV and theater seats—or recycled sofas for that matter—the garage will be the ideal spot to gather for movie night, the championship game, or political debates.

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