Building a garage from scratch is something which many homeowners are doing in order to improve their homes, create more space, lower their car insurance premiums and/or raise the value of their property. If you’ve decided that building a garage is something you’d potentially like to do, then it’s important to understand the main considerations before going ahead and commissioning an architect’s design. Here at Evander we fit garage doors to both existing and brand new garage buildings, giving us a good overview about what works and what doesn’t. Read on to find out our main consideration points when creating a DIY garage space.
How Big Should My Garage Be?
The size of your garage is really up to you, although you will have to take available space and cost into consideration. Many homes in the UK – particularly those in more urban areas – will not have a huge amount of land available on the property on which to build a whole garage. For this reason, a smaller garage which is attached to the main home itself may be all that’s feasible. Where there is space to play with, it’s worth thinking about the correct location for the garage for ease of use, and to do this you’ll need to define exactly what you’ll be using the garage for.
If you want to use your garage in the traditional way and store one or more vehicles, then it’s important to think about how easy it will be to get them in and out of the garage, as well as how they’ll fit into the space when the garage door is closed. You don’t want to scrimp on space when it comes to cars, as they’re often larger than you think.
How Can I Make My Garage Secure?
When planning where to site your garage, you should also consider security. Will the garage be situated close to a road or far enough from the house that you may not notice if it’s broken into? Will you be keeping valuables inside the garage? For security reasons, you’ll need to think about these aspects in order to make an informed and intelligent decision about what safeguards you’ll have in place.
The garage door you choose will have a strong bearing on whether you’ll need extra security features or not, as a decent garage door will be highly secure on its own. If you want to go for something cheap and functional, then you’re best off choosing a basic garage door from a reputable manufacturer like Hörmann or Garador, to ensure there is a sufficient bas level of security. When it comes to adding extra protections, garage door defenders, Yale security alarms and extra-secure garage doors (see the Garador Guardian range) should be considered.
Which Garage Door Should I Choose?
Your garage door is the soul of your garage – the thing which will make the biggest visual impact and protect the garage contents from light-fingered visitors and the elements. The type of door you should choose is part based on garage functionality and part based on your personal taste. Of course, if you have to adhere to a certain ‘look’ in your area or neighbourhood, then you won’t have the widest choice of designs. The opening mechanism is the main consideration here; would you like your door to open in an automated fashion, or are you happy for it to be manual? Do you want the door to stay as one single panel as it moves or separate into smaller sections to save space?
The next thing you should consider during a garage build is the material and colour your garage door will be made from. Here at Evander we have galvanised steel, insulated steel, insulated aluminium and solid timber garage doors available. They all have their benefits and their drawbacks, so it’s important to consider what goes well with the style of your property as well as what suits your personal taste.
What About Planning Permission?
Whether planning permission is needed or not is up to your local planning authority, who you should be able to contact via your local council offices. Some garage structures will not need any planning permission at all, but it’s always important to check, even if you’re sure that you don’t need permission. This is because, if you are found in breach of planning laws, you can be asked to take the structure down and pay a potentially unlimited fine.
If your home is listed, or if you reside in an area of outstanding natural beauty or a conservation area, then there may be restrictions on the type of thing you can build and how it will look. Always check with your local authority in the first instance to be on the safe side.