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hyunelan2 05-06-2011 10:31 AM

In theory: expand attached garage, or add detached garage?
I am not about to start this project any day soon, but hopefully in a few years. However, knowing what I plan to do in the future will help me decide what else I will do with my yard today.

I currently have a 2.5 attached-car garage. It is 2 cars wide, but is almost 2 cars deep - totaling about 700sqft. I MIGHT be able to fit 2 cars nose to tail if I didn't have any cabinets/tools, (and one car was a Mini Cooper :laughing:).

I also have a storage shed in the back of my yard, approximately 10x15. It is very basic, wood construction & floor, no power. Basically a place to park the lawnmower, put yard furniture during the winter, and that's about it.

I cannot make my existing garage wider, due to an existing easement next-to my house. I can make it deeper/longer though. Expanding out the back of the garage approximately 20', would give me another ~500 sqft of space. This extra space would be used for 2 things:
  • 1, an eventual "Extra" or "toy" car. I had 3 cars (mine, my wife's, plus one), but got tired of shuffling around in the driveway and got rid of it last year.
  • 2, a spot where I can use my woodworking tools without having to empty out the garage first.

The other option would be to add a standalone garage in the back, where the shed currently exists. Something like a 20x25ish. I would have to run electric and gas (for heat) to the building. The downside to this is any 3rd car I put in there would need to drive through the yard to get to it. I won't be able to pave a permanent driveway to it, due to the aforementioned easement. It would be nice to have a separate "space" out away from the house for using tools and such. Then again, getting there in the winter would suck when snow is on the ground. The extra garage upside would be that my "house" wouldn't be under construction, and it might/is-probably cheaper to build.

If I expand the garage it will take-out my pool and deck, which honestly we are fine with not having.

Here are some sketchup images, I like to play with sketchup more than I probably should.

Existing image:

What the expansion would look like:

What the inside would look like. Where the "line" on the floor is, is where my current garage ends.

A guy down the street from me just did a similar sized expansion, but put a second story above the garage. Permitted cost was $56K. I don't want to spend $50K on garage space.

Again, this is not happening today, but I don't want to put in extensive landscape I will have to tear out in a few years because I am putting a building there (either behind the house, or near where the shed stands now).


vsheetz 05-06-2011 12:38 PM

If you go with the detached garage you can put in a DG driveway over the easement. Packed down becomes very solid. But diggable should there be a need to do so. Then easy to replace afterwards.

I have an attached two car garage and a separate 24x30 workshop. The separate is my own man-cave area. The Jeep sleeps there, tools, etc.

I like it separate. But the snow factor is something I don't deal with. Would be a factor in attached vs detached.

hyunelan2 03-20-2012 10:09 AM

I've been thinking about this a lot lately, so I'm bumping my old thread. Anyone have any thoughts on expanding my attached garage vs. building a new standalone to replace the shed in my yard?

Cindyg 11-09-2012 03:18 PM

Here is sort of an off the wall idea... Why not add a garage door to the back of your garage to make it a drive thru/breezeway? Then continue your driveway out the back to a new detached garage/workspace further back in the yard. Of course there is still the snow issue but at least you wouldn't be driving through the yard.

Mort 11-09-2012 03:31 PM

Detached, with a gravel driveway headed to the back.

BTW, what program did you use for those renderings?

GBrackins 11-09-2012 05:34 PM


the program is Sketchup, orginally by Google but now by Trimble.

the basic program is free and can work with pc's or macs. There is a lot of free training available from their site as well as Youtube. Very simple and straightforward to learn. Let's you produce a 3d model. I use it all the time for concepts, makes clients go "ga-ga" ..... LOL

you can set the latitude and longitude of the site, together with date and time and get actual shadow lines on the elevations .....

try it out :thumbup:

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