How much does a garage conversion cost?
$3,000 – $17,000 drywall and finishing renovation cost
$5,000 – $50,000+ cost to convert garage to living space
Garage conversion cost
A professional garage conversion costs $5,000 to $50,000+ on average, depending on the size and living space type. The cost to convert a garage to a bedroom is $5,000 to $17,000. A garage-to-apartment conversion costs $20,000 to $100,000+. The cost to finish a garage is $10 to $30 per square foot.
|Finish||Average cost (per square foot)||Average total cost||Includes|
|Partial renovation||$1 – $10||$500 – $5,000||Cosmetic updates, new paint, resurfaced flooring, or new door.|
|Full remodel (finished garage)||$10 – $30||$3,000 – $17,000||New flooring, custom cabinets and storage, finished walls, new garage doors, etc.|
|Conversion to living space||$50 – $200||$5,000 – $50,000+||New floors, new wall, windows, insulation, drywall, electrical, plumbing, HVAC, etc.|
Cost to convert garage to living space
The cost to convert a garage to a living space depends on the new space's intended purpose and requirements. Converting a garage to a fully functional apartment with a bedroom, bathroom, and kitchen involves significantly more labor and materials than converting the space to a home gym or utility room.
|Living space||Average cost|
|Bedroom||$5,000 – $17,000|
|Home gym cost||$2,000 – $9,000|
|Kitchen||$6,000 – $54,000|
|Living room||$5,000 – $10,000|
|Office||$5,000 – $10,000|
|Utility room / mudroom||$3,000 – $6,000|
|ADU / apartment / in-law suite / studio||$20,000 – $100,000+|
Cost to convert garage to a bedroom
Converting a garage into a bedroom costs $5,000 to $17,000. Small bedrooms with basic elements— a window, insulation, drywall, flooring, outlets and switches, HVAC, and a closet—fall at the low end of the price range. Larger bed/bath suites cost more due to the extra space, fixtures, and plumbing.
Cost to convert garage into a studio apartment or in-law suite
The cost to convert a garage into an apartment or in-law suite is $20,000 to $100,000+, depending on the size and features. Full conversions involve framing, drywall, building a bathroom and kitchen, adding heating and cooling, and finishing the interior. New doors and windows may be required for code compliance.
Covert garage to kitchen cost
Converting a garage to a kitchen costs $6,000 to $54,000+, depending on the size, design, features, materials, and appliances. A basic kitchen needs plumbing, electrical, flooring, insulation, drywall, and ventilation. Cabinets or storage shelves and countertops also add to the cost.
Most kitchens require one or more dedicated electrical circuits.
Cost to turn garage into office room
The average cost to turn convert a garage to an office is $5,000 to $10,000. Office essentials include insulation, drywall, a window, lighting and electrical outlets, HVAC, Wi-Fi or high-speed internet, and updated flooring. Most offices have one or more desks and cabinets or other storage furniture.
Cost to turn garage into a living room
Turning a garage into a living room costs $5,000 to $10,000 on average, the same as s simple bedroom or office as they share the same basic requirements—a window, electrical wiring, insulation, drywall, heating/cooling, and updated flooring. Remember to budget for comfortable seating and entertainment options.
Cost to convert garage to a utility room
The average cost to convert a garage to a utility room is $3,000 to $6,000. Utility rooms typically house laundry appliances, storage options, and possibly a sink, requiring electrical wiring, plumbing, ventilation, insulation, and drywall at a minimum.
Laundry areas require at least one dedicated 20-amp circuit for code compliance.
Consider shock-absorbing flooring to reduce the laundry appliance sounds and vibrations from affecting nearby rooms.
Cost to enclose a carport and turn into a room
The cost to turn a carport into a room is $7,000 to $20,000+, depending on the new room type and requirements and whether the carport's foundation and roof are up to current building codes. Converting to an enclosed garage requires less labor and materials than converting to a living space.
An attached carport typically costs less to enclose than a detached structure because it already has one or more walls in place and often has the same foundation footings as the house, requiring less construction to create a code-compliant space.
Cost to remodel a garage by size
|Garage size||Full remodel and finishing||Convert to living space|
|1-car||$2,900 – $11,800||$5,000 – $20,000+|
|2-car||$4,000 – $17,300||$10,000 – $50,000+|
|3-car||$5,800 – $25,900||$30,000 – $75,000+|
|4-car||$8,600 – $47,500||$50,000 – $100,000+|
|RV / camper van||$5,000 – $15,000||$15,000 – $35,000+|
Cost to finish a garage
The cost to finish a garage is $500 to $5,000 for partial cosmetic updates like new paint, flooring, and a new door. A fully finished garage costs $3,000 to $17,000 and typically includes new floors, finished walls, upgraded garage doors, and custom storage. Finished garages still function as parking and storage.
Most finished garages have no open or exposed walls or beams.
A finished garage may also include insulation, electrical work, and textured or painted walls.
Garage remodel cost factors
|Custom cabinets and storage||$1,100 – $3,700|
|Debris removal||$150 – $800|
|Drywall||$800 – $5,000|
|Ducts and vents (per duct run)||$400 – $600|
|Ductless AC||$2,000 – $15,000|
|Garage door replacement||$400 – $3,700+|
|Install car lift||$2,500 – $5,500|
|Outlets (each)||$150 – $800|
|Plumbing (per fixture)||$450 – $1,800|
|Raise / level garage floor||$300 – $5,400|
|Soundproofing||$2,800 – $17,400|
|Wall framing||$1,000 – $5,000|
|Windows (each)||$150 – $1,000|
|Exterior makeover||$1,000 – $6,000|
|Permit fees||$1,000 – $2,000|
|Debris removal cost||$150 – $800|
|Insulation||$1 – $3+ per square foot|
|Flooring installation cost||$2 – $23 per square foot|
|Painting||$1 – $3 per square foot|
A major factor affecting the cost to remodel a garage is the garage size. Other cost factors include:
Garage type – A detached garage typically costs more to remodel than an attached garage due to the added labor to connect plumbing and electrical lines. A detached garage may also require foundation work to bring the footing depth up to code when converting to a living space.
Garage age & condition – Repairs add to the renovation project cost.
Renovation type – A simple cosmetic update costs much less than a conversion to an in-law suite or accessory dwelling unit (ADU).
Contractor rates – Most garage conversion contractors charge a flat fee of 10% to 20% of the total project cost to coordinate and manage the renovation.
Material quality – High-end materials add to the remodeling cost but are more durable and longer lasting than cheaper materials.
Insurance – Homeowners insurance may need adjustment if the garage renovation adds square footage to the home's livable space footprint.
Accessibility –Connecting to the plumbing and electrical lines may require breaking through concrete or drywall, increasing labor and material costs.
Additions – A garage extension costs $60 to $120 per square foot on average.
Garage conversion plans
Hiring an architect or a design-build contractor to develop and draft a plan is the first step in the garage conversion process. The professional to hire and the fees they charge depend on the geographical region and local building and permitting requirements.
Hiring an architect costs $100 to $250 per hour or 5% to 20% of the construction cost. Some cities require a licensed architect or engineer signature when submitting the proposed plan for permit approval.
Detailed blueprints cost $0.35 to $5.00 per square foot. Non-certified site plans cost $100 to $250 but some areas do not accept them for permit approval.
A structural engineer charges $100 to $220 per hour or 1% to 5% of the renovation construction cost to assess the existing structure and confirm the project's safety and code compliance.
Garage walls, windows, doors, and floors
The cost of walls, windows, doors, and floors when remodeling a garage depends highly on the existing garage condition and the scale of the conversion. Converting an unfinished garage into a home gym requires less labor and materials than converting it to a multi-room living space.
Consider these potential installation costs when renovating a garage:
Framing – Wall framing costs $11 to $32 per square foot, including labor and materials.
Insulation – The cost to insulate a garage is $0.50 to $3.00+ per square foot for labor and materials. An attached garage typically already has some insulation in the adjoining wall but will require insulation in the remaining walls to create a living space.
Drywall - The average cost to drywall a garage is $800 to $5,000 with professional installation, depending on the size and the drywall finish level. Converting a garage to a multiple room space requires more drywall work, costing $1.50 to $3.50 per square foot of wall or ceiling surface.
Paint – Interior painting costs $1 to $3 per square foot, including labor. Total cost depends on the garage size, number of walls painted, and whether including the ceiling, doors, and trim.
Windows – Window installation costs $150 to $1,000 for labor and materials to install a new full-frame window. Building codes may require a window for fire safety if removing the garage door access during a garage conversion.
Soundproofing – Soundproofing costs $2,800 to $17,400 for the entire garage or $10 to $30 per square foot.
Floors – Garage flooring installation costs $4 to $15 per square foot, depending on the type. Epoxy coating costs $4 to $10 per square foot or $1,600 to $5,800 for a 2-car garage. Consider epoxy coating when converting the garage to something other than a full living space, such as a utility room or a home gym.
Garage door replacement costs $400 to $1,200 installed on average for an uninsulated door. An insulated garage door costs $750 to $3,700+ installed, depending on the size, style, brand, and insulation type.
Interior door installation costs $226 to $824. The average cost to install an exterior door is $420 to $1,688. Converting a garage to a living space often includes one exterior door and one or more interior doors.
Garage electrical remodeling cost
Garage electrical remodeling cost depends on the type of renovation and number of outlets and fixtures needed. Most garage conversions require at least one new 20-amp circuit. Renovations including a bathroom, kitchen, or new heavy-duty appliances may require one or more dedicated circuits.
|Electrician labor cost||$40 – $100 per hour|
|120V outlet installation cost (per outlet)||$150 – $350|
|220V outlet installation cost (per outlet)||$250 – $800|
|Light switch cost (per switch)||$100 – $300|
|Ceiling fan installation cost (per fixture)||$150 – $350|
|Dedicated circuit cost (per circuit)||$250 – $900|
|Subpanel cost (one panel)||$500 – $1,700|
Garage bathroom or kitchen plumbing cost
Plumbers charge $45 to $150 per hour to install new plumbing and most have a $50 to $200 minimum call-out fee. Total cost depends on accessibility and the number of new lines and fixtures. Adding a simple half-bath costs much less than installing a full bathroom and working kitchen.
Installing new plumbing pipes costs $450 to $1,800 per fixture. Installation costs are higher if the new fixtures are far from the existing plumbing lines.
The cost to add a bathroom is $20,000 to $30,000+ for a full bathroom. Large bathrooms with luxury items like a double vanity or garden tub fall at the high end of the range.
Installation costs increase significantly if the new plumbing lines require digging up and repouring concrete or if you share a sewer line with neighbors.
Cost to raise or level garage floor
The average cost to raise a garage floor is $1,100 to $5,400 for the whole floor or $300 to $2,000 to level 2 to 4 sections, depending on the method used. Mudjacking costs less than foam jacking but takes longer to cure and creates larger hole patches in the concrete.
Raising or leveling the garage floor costs 50% to 80% less than replacing the floor with new concrete.
Garage floors are often lower than the rest of the house and are typically sloped for drainage away from the home.
Garage conversion permit cost
A garage conversion permit costs $1,000 to $2,000 on average for an attached garage. Permits for converting a detached garage to an apartment or in-law suite typically cost more. Some cities charge flat permit fees, while others assess the permit fee as a percentage of the project cost.
Garage air conditioning and heating
New ductwork installation costs $400 to $600 per duct run when connecting the garage to the home's HVAC system. Ductless mini-split installation costs $2,000 to $6,000 for one zone or up to $15,000+ for a multi-zone system needed when converting to an ADU or multiple room living space.
Garage conversion FAQs
Does a garage conversion add value to a house?
A garage conversion adds value to a house in some cases but not others. In an area where square footage is highly valued, the added living space with proper permitting may add value. Converting a garage in a cold region or area with limited parking options may devalue the property.
Avoid converting a garage in a neighborhood where most homes have one.
Convert the garage in a way that potential buyers can easily convert it back if desired.
Most real estate experts recommend against garage conversions if planning to sell the house in the next 5 years. Make functional improvements instead, like replacing a heavy manual garage door with a lightweight aluminum automatic model or refinishing the floor with a high-traffic, low-maintenance coating.
How can I make my garage livable?
Depending on the intended use of the space, the basic requirements to make your garage livable and building code compliant may include:
Raising or leveling the floor.
Insulating and drywalling the walls and ceiling.
Replacing the garage door with an insulated exterior wall.
Installing at least one window for fire safety compliance.
Installing an interior door, exterior door, or both.
Installing heating and cooling or connecting to the home's HVAC system if it can support the added space.
Connecting plumbing lines and installing fixtures if the living space includes a bathroom, kitchen, or utilities.
How long does a garage conversion take?
A garage conversion takes 1 to 8+ weeks for construction, depending on the conversion type and the garage size and condition. The planning, design, and permitting process—required before construction begins—may add 2 weeks to several months to the project timeline.
Do I need an architect for a garage conversion?
You may need an architect for a garage conversion as many areas require a proposed floor plan signed by a licensed architect or engineer for permit approval. Hiring an architect, design-build contractor, or other registered building professional ensures the garage conversion is safe and code compliant.
Do I need planning permission for a garage conversion?
You may need a planning permit for a garage conversion, depending on the regulations in your area and the type of conversion. Research local government permit requirements and zoning guidelines and check HOA rules if applicable. Some areas have detailed restrictions on the types of garage conversions allowed.
Getting estimates from garage remodeling contractors
Before hiring a garage remodeling contractor near you, be sure to:
Get at least three detailed estimates to compare. Compare the details of each estimate against your own list of must-haves.
Hire a company that is licensed, bonded, insured, and has been in business at least five years.
Browse their reviews on HomeGuide and Google.
Ask for references with contact information.
Ask for a portfolio of past renovation projects.
Check local regulations before renovating the garage to an alternative space. Some cities require a specific amount of covered parking.
Get a detailed contract and warranty in writing before the work begins.
Never pay in full before the project is complete.
Questions to ask
What experience do you have remodeling garages?
Are you licensed, bonded, and insured?
What does the estimate include?
What additional costs should I expect?
How long will the renovation take?
What permits do I need, and will you handle the permitting process?
How do you handle damages if they happen on the job?