What to do with your garage?
A garage is usually a place to park the car or to store stuff in. For most people that’s all the space that there is available. Not everyone likes to use the garage for these functions, but rather to expand on those ideas. Most guys use their garages to fix up cars, or to work on the ones that they have. Others turn theirs into a workshop for metal or wood work and make full use of the space that they have. Depending on the space, for many people the garage might double as the laundry room or at the very least, house the washer and dryer that is used for the laundry.
Just because this is what is typically done, doesn’t mean that you must do this. There are tons of other ideas that you might want to consider, and we have given some thought to some of the more creative ones that we have either done ourselves. Some of them take more work than others, and some take some remodeling to make them work right. Either way, your garage doesn’t just have to be a place for your car anymore.
Home Theater / Entertainment
There are many ways to do this, and it can often be referred to as the man cave, but entertaining is a way for people to relax and enjoy the company of others in their favorite theme. The problem is that the garage can get hot in the summer, so unless your garage is attached it might mean some resealing and air conditioning might be needed to make it comfortable. A couch, or some comfortable chairs and a large television can change it up. Throw in some speakers, or a gaming system and it is a great way to spend some time out of the house. With a fridge out there its even better. Just be sure and watch the noise level so the neighbors are not complaining.
Want to be a little more creative? We have a small garage, and something came to mind when I first pulled my car in. I thought, why not put in a large television with a Blu-ray player. Put some wireless speakers on each side of the garage and you have your own drive in. You can operate everything via remote from inside the car, and relive times from the past.
Whether the games are for the adults or for the kids, having a place that they can enjoy them without creating a mess or being a nuisance in the house is always a plus. And since the garage can get warm, you can include some fans and windows for ventilation, or keep the garage door open when they are playing in there. A game room for the outdoors doesn’t mean that it is a place for electronic gaming but rather more skillful games such as Ping Pong, or Billiards. You can have a spot for darts too, and make it fun for the whole family. These are simple games that everyone loves to play, and you can make it more exciting with things such as an Air Hockey Table or even a Poker Table for those into higher stakes games. The more fun it is the more you might need to check on those that are in their playing or you might never see them again. If you are concerned that the smaller ones are behaving in there, you can always install a wireless camera, so you can watch them from the house.
Office Space / Living Space
While a garage is not really thought of as a living space or an office space, with the right permits and construction it can be. I say this because a garage can experience temperatures that are different than what is in the house. There are no seals, no ventilation, no air conditioning and no heat in a garage unless you add it yourself. And sometimes the city or county you live in needs you to have a permit to change the garage into an area that can be used as a work place or living place. You would need to check with your local regulations office to find out for sure.
An extra bedroom can come in handy, and some people will go so far as to turn the garage into a mini apartment, adding a small kitchen and bathroom, and calling it a studio apartment. They can then rent it out as a sublet and make a little extra cash. It’s a good way to teach kids about living on their own if you have the space for it and the time to convert it. The downside is that nobody can park in the garage anymore.
A business office is great if you get a lot of clients that come over and you want to keep personal relationships separate from business ones. It gives a more professional feel if you can add the walls and make it look professional too.
Holiday Themed Play Land
This by far is my favorite thing to do, although I no longer have the space for it. If you have a house with a garage it can be turned into a haunted house, or something festive for the winter holidays too. We used to set up haunted houses all the time and people would come back each year to see what new creation we could come up with. It’s a lot of fun, but it takes a lot of work. If you pre-construct everything you can change the theme easily and use the garage for storage the rest of the time. Some good plywood with hinges so you can section off what you need, painted the colors you want for the holiday you want to create works best. And if you number or letter each piece it means you can set up a maze or playground the same each year.