Do you want to do more with your garage? Are you making the most of this space, or is it going to waste if you’re not using it to park your car? Why not make the practical and sensible choice, and maximise your available space at home by converting your garage into a utility room?

Utility rooms are useful additions to the house, often adding real value to home life.  They can really complement your lifestyle too – from hanging coats and outdoor clothing, to keeping muddy wellies and sportswear out of the hallway or kitchen. Utility rooms can make your life easier, create some extra space and add value to your home.

Why Convert The Garage Into A Utility Room?

There are many benefits of a garage utility room. Perhaps the biggest advantage is that you’re creating more space in your home. You’ll no longer need to fit your washing machine and tumble dryer under counters in your kitchen instead you can use this space for every-day storage or reconfigure the kitchen to fit in that island or table you’ve always wanted.

Having all your appliances in one place can make things so much easier. And, you can give yourself surfaces for folding and sorting clothes. Your kitchen can become the real heart of your home, a space where you can cook and socialise without the background noise of whirring machines. Converting an existing space means you don’t have to expand your property so, if your garage is underutilised, transforming it into a utility room can be a great way of making the most of all the available space in your house.

How Can You Convert Your Garage?

Before you start, have a good think about why you need the space, as this will help you to plan the conversion better – will you be storing food there? Or do you wish to keep your domestic appliances out of the kitchen by placing them in the utility room? There are many ways to convert your garage into a utility room, so we’re offering some practical tips below.

Remove Existing Belongings

Most people use their garage as a bit of a dumping ground. This valuable space is often used to store BBQs, bags of old clothing or sports equipment that never gets used. Maybe yours contains the treadmill or exercise bike that you just can’t give up on, or maybe it’s filled with treasured family photographs that you simply don’t have space for elsewhere.

putting books into boxes

You can’t create a new room in a space that’s filled with clutter. Your first step is to empty it out and throw out things you don’t need.

Be strict with yourself. Are you really using that punch bag you got years ago as a present? Do you really need to have the tent taking up space when you’re waiting for summer to go camping again? You can throw away any belongings that you won’t be using again or, if they’re in suitable condition, donate them to charity.

Of course, if you have things that you want to keep but don’t have any room for, then it’s time to consider the benefits of domestic storage. You can find our self-storage centres across the North West, which means that, whether you need self-storage in Preston, self-storage in Liverpool or anywhere across the North West we can help you find a suitable storage unit near you.

Here are our  other options, depending on your nearest location:

Design A Room

Sit down with a pen and paper to decide what you’d like to use the room for and how you’d like the room to look. Where do you want your appliances to go and what else would you like to include?

Garages are on level ground, with very big doors to get things through so getting washing machines and tumble dryers in there will be a breeze.  It’s perhaps the easiest space to convert.

Converting a basement can be a lot more challenging because it will require a lot more planning and care. And, if you’re moving things to an attic, how do you plan to get them there? Also remember that washing machines and tumble dryers are constantly shaking and vibrating, which might be annoying if they’re on the top floor of your house. You would have to think about shock-absorbing flooring, to reduce the sound and vibration, as well as a way to get appliances into the room.

Closeup of a laundry being put into the washing machine.

Think About Wiring

You’ll need plug sockets for all of your electrical appliances. Contact a professional and see what they’d recommend. Find an electrician that will work with you, helping you to position sockets where they’ll work with your plan for the room. Be flexible. If the electrician tells you that your appliance positioning won’t work, then it might be wise to come up with another solution.

Consider Your Appliance Types

Vented tumble dryers are difficult things to install in most utility rooms. You’ll need somewhere for the pipe that takes the moisture away. If you can, get a condenser dryer and save yourself the effort. After all, condenser dryers don’t need these extra pipes, which makes them more convenient choices.

Think About Storage And Workspace

Give yourself some counters and work surfaces, as well as storage for cleaning equipment. There’s no point investing in a beautiful utility room, then leaving laundry tablets and piles of dirty clothes all around. Choose effective storage solutions, including large laundry baskets and perhaps a permanent ironing board surface. That way, everything will always be exactly where you want it.

Decorate With The Right Paints

Utility rooms can become very warm and humid environments. They’re not the ideal places to use your favourite wallpaper. Instead, select hard-wearing paints that can cope with the warm environment and the humidity, which will save you time, effort and money in the long run, especially when it comes to keeping mould away.

Think About Ventilation

So, the last thing you want is for your utility room to become warm, humid and damp. Some warm and humid air is inevitable but try to keep it to a minimum. Ensure that your room has adequate ventilation by installing extra vents or by keeping a window open. Often this is easiest in garages, where doors may allow draughts to get through or holes can be drilled in the walls.

house with garage

Get Appropriate Council Permissions

Once you’ve designed your new utility room, there’s one more step to take. Your garage conversion may need planning permission. Before you start work, check with the council to ensure that you’re doing things properly.

If the work is all internal and does not require an extension, then you’ll usually be allowed to go ahead without any additional permissions. But if you’re making more significant changes, you’ll want to get planning permission.

Get To Work

Once you’ve ensured that you can do the conversion without breaking planning laws, and once you’ve spoken to professionals for assistance with wiring and sockets, you’re free to put plans into action.

You can convert a room on your own, with help from friends and family, or with professional assistance. Make this a room that you’re genuinely happy with and that has space for everything you need. And, if you need to put things into storage whilst you carry out the conversion – or for longer, Smart Storage can help you with your self-storage needs.

Don’t hesitate to get in touch with our friendly team today and see what we can do for you.  We’ve got plenty of space for your belongings and, to make your life easier, we’ve got all the boxes and packaging materials you’ll need!