Everything you need to know about finding a garage builder
When building a garage, carport or shed, or thinking about an extension or addition to your garage, there are some things that you need to consider. Firstly, you need to consider what you will be using it for – to store cars, as a workshop, to store gardening implements and furniture, or even if you will be using it for entertaining from time to time. If you are using the garage for cars, ensure that it is big enough to accommodate all the cars in the home. As a guide, each car will generally need around 3.6m x 7.2m of space but don’t forget to allow extra space for bigger cars or other items to store.
Consider your budget as well. Pre-fabricated garages, carports or sheds are usually cheaper to erect. The most expensive option is to retrofit a garage to your existing home, but this can be worth it in terms of resale value. When designing your garage or carport, ensure that it fits in with the house and does not clash. If it is visible from the street, it should also blend in with the street frontage. This is also true for sheds. An architect or building designer can help you to achieve this. Some councils may have regulations on how your garage or carport can look, and many require development approval so it is important that you find out what your local council’s rules are before beginning any designs.
If you will be spending time in your garage, carport or shed, consider installing items to make them more comfortable, such as power points, insulation, waterproofing etc.
Types of Garages and Carports
There are several different types of garages and carports, so it is important to take the time to ensure that you have the correct one for your needs. Here are some of the more common options:
Freestanding Garage (Prefabricated) – kit form garages are basically large sheds that have garage doors. These are usually made from steel and are available in many different colours, ensuring that there will be one to suit your home. Prefabricated or kit form garages come to your home in ready-to-assemble pieces but it is recommended that you get a professional to put them together for you. These garages are a very economical option.
Freestanding Garage (Non-Prefabricated) – building a freestanding garage gives you more flexibility in terms of design and also allows you to match the new garage with your home, no matter what style of home you have. If you want to build a garage from scratch, you will need to speak to a builder and possibly an architect or building designer, depending on what ideas you have.
Attached Garage – these garages are attached to your existing home. They are an expensive option, since the roof has to be expanded to fit over the garage and load bearing walls also have to be adjusted. However, they can increase the resale value of your home, and you have the convenience of being able to enter your house straight from the garage – no more getting wet.
Carports – carports are a cheaper choice than a garage and are great for entertaining and storing cars. However, carports, due to their open nature, are not as secure as garages. You can buy a kit and build the carport yourself or have a professional build one for you. The advantage of a carport over a garage is that they can be added onto over time should you need more space.
There are several different types of doors that you can use in your garage, or even in a carport or shed. All of the doors outlined below can be operated manually or electronically.
Roller Doors – roller doors can only be made out of steel, but some manufacturers will coat the steel to give it a timber-look finish. Roller doors are still the most common and cost-effective door option available.
Sectional Doors – these newer-style doors are made up of hinged panels that run on tracks affixed to the garage ceiling. Sectional doors can be made of a number of materials including steel, timber and fibreglass.
Tilt Doors – tilt doors are made up of one solid panel, and like the name suggests, they tilt upwards without folds or rolls. Because of the solid panel, tilt doors can be made of a wide variety of materials including plywood, timber, metal, fibreglass and so on. Tilt doors are also great for garages or carports that may be shaped unusually as there is the possibility for them to be custom-made.
How Much Does a Garage Cost?
Garage building will typically be quoted on square metre basis, so logically expect to pay more for larger areas. Other factors that will influence final cost include the materials utilised, builders permits, insurance and plans. Builders hourly rates can start from $35 per hour, depending on location. When you have factored all this into your budget single brick garages can typically cost well in excess of $25,000, a figure that will escalate if you are looking to integrate the structure into your existing home and are using double brick.
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