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Old 02-12-2016, 08:38 AM   #1
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Remodel garage into a room.


I live in a ranch where there is no way to get into the garage or basement from the home. I have since built a large shed to store all the stuff, and plan to finish the garage.

Looking for Pro tips and suggestions.

My rough plan would be to remove the door, place the concrete stem where the garage entry is, frame up the wall, build a floor.

I was brainstorming placing the stem. Would it be better to just place blocks and dowel in or should I chip some of the slab and dowel and pour the stem to there is no cold joint where water could flow in?

Then I would frame up the wall. I will leave the header in place so not too concerned if there is a stem and footing under where the garage cut out was. I read that most houses may have the stem and footing under but saw on another website (or maybe this one) someone was filling in a garage door and there was no footing. Anyway, I don't think I need one. But let me know if you think otherwise.

Then I would either place floor joists so the floor can be at the same level as the adjacent living room, or place the new floor atop the slab ( I assume with 2x4 laid on the 3.5" side?) and have steps down.

I am in early stages of plan. All advice is appreciated.

Thanks.
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Old 02-12-2016, 08:38 AM   #2
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rough sketch

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Old 02-12-2016, 08:41 AM   #3
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Also, not too savvy on moisture barriers. If I need one, what type and where should it go. In the past I have had some surface water coming in through the side of the garage. It looks like there is a cold joint where the stem is possibly built atop the slab?
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Old 02-12-2016, 09:04 AM   #4
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You may be way ahead of yourself. In many jurisdictions (mine included), conversion of a garage to living space is pretty complicated, and may involve zoning regulations, septic regulations, and serious building code issues. Unless you live in an area with no building codes, you need to start by discussing the project with your building inspector, who will no doubt be happy to discuss permit requirements, zoning rules, and building code with you. If a permit is necessary, this is one project I would strongly urge you NOT to skip the permit on, there are life safety issues that need to be addressed, especially if you plan to keep part of the garage as a garage, and only convert part to living space.
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Old 02-12-2016, 09:24 AM   #5
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It's not going to be a load bearing wall since the header is left in place so no real footing needed.
I use 1/2 rebar drilled into the slab and back fill the block to "pin it".
I also cut out and remove the apron for a better look and stop the splash back.
Post a picture of the outside where that waters been coming in. somethings wrong if that's happening.
No gutters, grades to high, no drain tile, outside of foundation was not sealed that's below grade ECT.
The siding should have been at least 6" above grade.
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Old 02-12-2016, 10:55 AM   #6
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Thank you gents for your input.

Dan, I will be sure to get it permitted and ask building dept. for input on requirements. Appreciate the advice from a fellow MA PE., Cheers!

Joe, the gutter drains right onto the ground there, I can do something with it to direct it away. Maybe a splash block or something more permanent. Grade is a little high too. I'll add some photos.
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