Earlier, offices meant to be a different space than your house. It was seen as ideal if you keep your job and office away from your house. The home was meant to be a relaxing space where you can rest and find comfort after a long day in the office.
But, after this pandemic hit the globe, the scenario has changed a lot. Home offices, which were seen either as a luxury or space for those who ran their businesses from home, have now gradually become a must-have for every working person. As soon as the pandemic hit society, work from home came into being. And all those who have worked from home for a while would surely agree that it is way more difficult to work from home as compared to offices.
Working from home might be a little comfortable but at the same time has its own drawbacks. Continuous interruptions from kids (if you have any), inappropriate working conditions, and a lot more, and work from home can be a tough task. But, home offices have become a savior in such scenarios.
People have started using the parts of their houses that weren’t used much, as home office spaces. Especially, turning garages into home offices has become quite common during this pandemic and work from home situation. Turning garages into offices is a very sustainable and amazing idea.
So, in case, you are also planning to create a home working space for yourself and you own a garage that can be turned into one, here are a few ways through which you can do it.
Why is it a good idea?
So, before we start with the ways of turning a garage into a home office, let’s discuss why it is such an amazing idea. First of all, it is pocket friendly. The building or adding a whole new portion to use as a working space will cost you a lot of money. On the other hand, converting or renovating an existing space will be effective and budget-friendly for you.
Now the question arises why garages and not any room of your house. The answer lies in the placement of your garage. Garages are generally set apart from the house. Hence, if you use the garage as a home office, you will be able to maintain the balance and adequate gap between your work life and personal life.
Also, if you feel like that you need a garage to park your cars, you can plan to renovate only some part of your garage into a working space and leave the rest. In this way, you will be able to satisfy two of your purposes from one piece of land.
1. Clear it up!
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The first step is of course to clear and empty your garage. In order to renovate it, you need it to be empty. Many people use their garages as a dumping ground along with a parking space. They keep their extra stuff and materials in the garage room. Basically, we are trying to say that your garage can be your storeroom as well.
In such a case it would be very difficult to know the size, condition of the garage, and you will not be able to decide from where to start working.
2. Sort the stuff!
Now, it is obvious that you will not want to have a pile of stuff in your house and neither will you want another problem in front of you. It is very necessary that when you take out all the stuff from your garage cum storeroom, the sort that stuff out so that later you don’t have another task piled up for you.
Keep the things that you think might be useful to you. If you find something that is useless, throw it in the trash. In short, decide what you want to keep and what not. Once, you have eliminated the useless stuff; keep the things that you want to be stored for the future at a specific place until your garage renovations are not completed.
Also, don’t forget to clean your garage so that you can work smoothly.
3. Figure out the work
Once you are done with clearing up the mess, it is time to start your actual work. The first step in your process of renovating should be to figure out what is to be done. First of all, have an idea of how much space you have. Then, decide whether you want to convert the whole space into an office or do you need a partial garage or store along with the office.
Many people find it difficult to find another place for adjusting the stuff that came out of the garage or they face difficulty in finding another car parking. Hence, we feel like it is a better idea to convert your garage into a partial home office and keep the other half as a garage and store place.
Once, you have decided on what you want to create in your garage, look into how you can do it. Flooring, lighting, paint, etc. whatever you think is necessary to make your home office perfect should be noted down.
4. Consult a professional to give you a green flag!
It is totally possible and reasonable to work on your garage renovation on your own. Most of the people, who convert their garages into home offices, do the work by themselves to cut the cost.
However, there are certain things that only a professional knows right and can guide you. So, before starting off with the work, make sure you consult an architect or a surveyor. He will survey the area, soundness of walls, flooring, ventilation, insulation, etc.
Garages are generally constructed very poorly. The reason might be that first, they are separated from the living space, and secondly, are for parking purposes. Hence, while construction people generally construct garages without proper consideration. Hence, it is necessary to ask a professional, whether the space is safe enough and worth renovating or not.
Once, the professional gives you approval, you can kick start the work!
5. Let’s talk about insulation!
As we are talking again and again about the fact that a garage is separated from your living space, there are some difficulties that occur because of this reason. To start with, garages are not at all designed in a way that controls the effects of the atmosphere. Controlling the climatic effects counts as a major point when we talk about our personal comfort.
Without climate control facilities, the garage will become a heat box at places where the climate is too hot and it will turn into a freezer when it will be cold outside. As we are talking about converting the garage into a home office, these climate-related issues are going to prove a big problem if not taken care of.
Hence, to start off with, think of some ways through which you can control the temperature of your garage turned office according to the needs of the place you live in. Even though there are many options that you can consider, let’s have a look into a few of them.
The first option is to add extra insulation to the walls of your garage. After that, adding mini-splits to your garage wall is also an amazing idea. You can use it to heat the space up when needed and at the same time cool it down when required. It is a very affordable and efficient way of temperature control.
Other than that, if you have an HVAC system in your home, you can also consider connecting your garage to it. However, this option might be a little expensive one but it surely works out great as far as your comfort is seen. Also, if your office hours are really long and you are planning to spend a lot of time in your garage cum office, you might also need to look at the insulation and heating features of your garage door.
6. Renovate the garage doors!
Doors play a significant role in your garage as we discussed above. So, it is important to consider changing or renovating your garage door. For e.g., if you have a garage with occupancy for two cars, the door will also be according to two cars. So, if you are planning to convert half of the garage as a home office, consider shortening the doors to take out extra space for the wall. This will, in turn, make your garage renovations and divisions easier.
Also, consider opting for insulated doors for your comfort purpose.
7. Make it brighter!
Garages are generally very dark places. They are light deficient. Most of the garages don’t have windows to let the natural light slide in. it is very rare to find a garage with windows and proper light inside.
Lights are very important to work efficiently. It is way too tiring to work for hours in dim light. Moreover, working in dim light is not good for the eyes as well.
Hence, make sure that you add proper lighting to your home office. Don’t use overhead lights. Look for some nice bright lights that could be added to the walls. You can also look for light lamps.
Other than lights, the walls of garages are also painted in very dark and shady colors generally. Such shades are good when you need to park your cars or store your stuff. But, working can become difficult and depressing with walls of such colors. This is the reason you don’t generally see office walls painted with dark colors like black.
So, paint the walls of your garage with some soothing bright colors that bring positive energy to your working space and make it look more like an office.
8. Flooring also matters!
After doors, walls, and lights, what matters a lot is the flooring of your garage. The floor of your garage also needs to be renovated as it is the node to suit you but is made to suit your car.
The floors of the garage or the slabs of your garage are generally lower in level as compared to the rest of your house. So, if you want to convert your garage to the home office, you might need to consider adding an extra slab to level up your garage.
Also, consider adding a polished concrete rough floor to your renovated garage. This is a good option because it will control moisture and also make your home office look much better. Don’t try laminating or tiles as they won’t suit if you’re still going to park your car in half of your garage.
There are many other ways to make the office part of your garage look livelier and feel comfier. You can use carpets or rugs to keep it warmer and more comfortable.
9. Make the space for your store!
So, we took out some stuff in the first step that was earlier stored in your garage. These things to be set back again so that you don’t have to worry about looking for a space for them in your house.
For this, add shelves and other storage materials to your renovated garage. This will only make space for your extra stuff but also help you in organizing your office-related things. Shelves, for example, are easy to construct, not too expensive, and can be used to store a lot of things. You can also add a shelf just above your work desk to organize your extra work files, keep stationary, speakers, and other things that are of your use. Other than shelves, pegboards, hooks, small bins, etc. there are many things that you can use.
10. Make sure to check your tech!
As work from home is completely dependent on technical aspects, make sure to check whether there are proper facilities in your garage or not. When we talk about proper facilities we mean things like plugs or sockets. Plugs and sockets are very important as you will need to charge your laptops, mobile phones or connect your computer systems.
Other than that, check whether your home wifi has connecting ability in your garage or not. In case the distance between your living space and your garage is long, there are possibilities that the wifi of your home won’t work in the garage. If this happens, then it might be a great problem that needs to be solved before you start working in your home office.
11. Furnish and add that personal touch!
Okay, so now all the technical things are done. Now what is left is adding a hint of you in your working space. You will easily find office tables and chairs anywhere in the market at reasonable prices. But, there is a better option!
You are working from the garage, but make it feel like your living space. Add bright and nice lively furniture. Keep nice vibrant cushions to make it look more homely and comfortable. Hang nice paintings and other things that you like. Design it in whatever way you like. Search for unique home office ideas and decorations. After all, it is your space!