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Username Post: Conversion advice        (Topic#327648)
RedSquirrel 
SJ Queen of the Crop
Posts: 31932
RedSquirrel
Reg: 06-13-08

07-24-13 08:12 AM - Post#4072270    

I'm thinking about converting my beautiful blue study/craft/music room into a garage for DH's car, and the existing useless garage into the study/craft/music room.

Putting aside all the other possible problems, I'm worried about how to make the old garage into a room with a nice view. It is at the bottom of a steep, curved driveway (one of many reasons why we can't use it as a garage) bounded on the right as you look out by a high, slightly tatty hedge that runs only 1 yard from the side of the garage with the only window in it. So there would have to be a new window facing up the drive, towards the west.

The new garage conversion would almost certainly have to involve building walls at the top of the driveway cutting out even more light. We can't change the gradient of the bottom part at all.

I am at a loss for ideas for how to make the old driveway pretty to look at out of the window. Any ideas? I can add photos if you need them.

 
SchoolBusMom 
SJ Divalicious
Posts: 11723
SchoolBusMom
Reg: 08-23-07

07-24-13 09:03 AM - Post#4072286    
    In response to RedSquirrel

Yeah Rosey I need photos!!!

 
RedSquirrel 
SJ Queen of the Crop
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RedSquirrel
Reg: 06-13-08

07-24-13 09:18 AM - Post#4072294    
    In response to SchoolBusMom

OK.

This is the west side of the front of our house. You can see the tatty garage door at the bottom of the slope on the left. It's all tatty because the whole front needs to be redone. The big window straight in front is the room I'm thinking of converting to a garage. It would need to be extended outwards and built up, or have the access from the other wall on the right.



This is taken from outside that garage door. Crappy view. That's the problem. The hedge on the right is the boundary between us and next door so that can't be moved. It can and will be tidied up of course.



Attachment: P1000412.JPG (205.69 KB) 113 View(s)
Attachment: P1000411.JPG (266.61 KB) 106 View(s)



 
hockeymom24 
SJ Eloquent One
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hockeymom24
Reg: 04-03-11

07-24-13 09:56 AM - Post#4072316    
    In response to RedSquirrel

are you talking about a garage as in to drive a car into or just a workspace?

 
RedSquirrel 
SJ Queen of the Crop
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RedSquirrel
Reg: 06-13-08

07-24-13 10:35 AM - Post#4072338    
    In response to hockeymom24

The garage at the bottom of the slope was designed in the 1960s to park a car in. It actually has an inspection pit in the back of it. But it is too small for modern cars, so for that reason and many others, we can't use it for that purpose.

But DH badly wants somewhere to park a car and to be able to work on it out of the rain, and I've been trying to think of ways of managing it.

 
scrapanda 
SJ Diva
Posts: 7146
scrapanda
Reg: 03-04-07

07-24-13 10:44 AM - Post#4072354    
    In response to RedSquirrel

I am not very good at visualizing conversions like that but I hope you figure something out!

 
Canadian Linda 
SJ Diva
Posts: 6410
Canadian Linda
Reg: 01-09-05

07-24-13 10:45 AM - Post#4072356    
    In response to RedSquirrel

So Rosey, if you converted the garage into a craft room would there be access to it from the house or would you always have to go outside to access it?

 
SchoolBusMom 
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Posts: 11723
SchoolBusMom
Reg: 08-23-07

07-24-13 10:50 AM - Post#4072368    
    In response to RedSquirrel

Im thinking for more light put in sliding glass doors or french doors if there is room after the new walls are built. If not then a floor to ceiling window.

And for a prettier view I would probably tear out some of the drive and put in flower beds with some sort of water feature.


 
RedSquirrel 
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RedSquirrel
Reg: 06-13-08

07-24-13 11:34 AM - Post#4072380    
    In response to SchoolBusMom

Linda - there is access from the inside. It's actually just an internal door, which is another reason why we can't use it to park a car in - that's against building regs for fire. But that lends itself well to a room conversion.

Colleen - definitely a big window or french doors there otherwise there would be no light at all. But we have to be careful what we change structurally, because the driveway is part of the house foundations. That wall on the left is the house wall and the top part of the driveway actually shores it up.

The driveway never gets any sunlight and is shaded by that high hedge and trees. It might grow some pretty ferns, but that's about it. Moss maybe. A water feature would collect lots of leaves, but it's definitely a thought. Hmm. Ferns. It would be a very green room!

 
3 Little Ladies 
SJ Deity
Posts: 72304
3 Little Ladies
Reg: 03-10-05

07-24-13 11:43 AM - Post#4072390    
    In response to RedSquirrel

Would it be possible to extend the existing garage to accommodate a modern size vehicle?

 
RedSquirrel 
SJ Queen of the Crop
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RedSquirrel
Reg: 06-13-08

07-24-13 12:31 PM - Post#4072420    
    In response to 3 Little Ladies

No because it isn't wide enough, and we can't extend to the side. Even if we could, that wall is load bearing so it would have to stay, so we wouldn't gain anything. There are umpteen other reasons why we can't use it as well - the fire regs, the floor level, that slope means that we can't use it in the ice, and a load of other things. We've had to abandon that as a possibility.

 
Canadian Linda 
SJ Diva
Posts: 6410
Canadian Linda
Reg: 01-09-05

07-24-13 01:11 PM - Post#4072430    
    In response to RedSquirrel

Well, I'm glad that you can access it from the house because I was worried that if you couldn't then you wouldn't use it as much.

 
3 Little Ladies 
SJ Deity
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3 Little Ladies
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07-24-13 01:18 PM - Post#4072432    
    In response to Canadian Linda

Would you really want it for a craft room with all of those issues?

 
RedSquirrel 
SJ Queen of the Crop
Posts: 31932
RedSquirrel
Reg: 06-13-08

07-24-13 01:18 PM - Post#4072434    
    In response to Canadian Linda

I think many garages have access to the house? We did in Australia. I haven't lived in a house with an integral garage until now.

Do your garages have doors into the house?

 
SchoolBusMom 
SJ Divalicious
Posts: 11723
SchoolBusMom
Reg: 08-23-07

07-24-13 01:19 PM - Post#4072436    
    In response to Canadian Linda

Then I would look for some lighter(help keep it bright) colored paving stones and cover the drive up to corner of house and put in some raised flower beds.

 
SchoolBusMom 
SJ Divalicious
Posts: 11723
SchoolBusMom
Reg: 08-23-07

07-24-13 01:24 PM - Post#4072442    
    In response to SchoolBusMom

You could do something like this for the water feature.


http://pinterest.com/pin/40180621647786429 /

 
RedSquirrel 
SJ Queen of the Crop
Posts: 31932
RedSquirrel
Reg: 06-13-08

07-24-13 01:26 PM - Post#4072448    
    In response to RedSquirrel

Jen - well it would be a compromise, certainly. On the plus side I could have daylight light-bulbs in there, and it would be cool all year round and very heatable in the winter. The current craft room gets very hot. The reasons why it can't be used for a car wouldn't be issues for a craft room.

The room on the other side of the downstairs hall is DH's audio-visual room. It has french doors out onto the back garden and is just gorgeous. It's always cool, the view is so green and beautiful, it has black-out curtains for insulation and privacy, it has a toilet and basin so you don't have to go upstairs. Oh that's another good thing, the existing garage has a tap so I could put a basin in there for washing mists and paints without trailing them through the house.

 
3 Little Ladies 
SJ Deity
Posts: 72304
3 Little Ladies
Reg: 03-10-05

07-24-13 01:38 PM - Post#4072466    
    In response to RedSquirrel

Yes, I would say most garages here have an entry door to the house. Ours is in our kitchen.

 
scrapanda 
SJ Diva
Posts: 7146
scrapanda
Reg: 03-04-07

07-24-13 01:44 PM - Post#4072468    
    In response to 3 Little Ladies

Here too - I don't know of anyone who doesn't have an entry into the house if their garage is attached. Ours comes in right beside the main entrance to the house which is off the living room.

 
RedSquirrel 
SJ Queen of the Crop
Posts: 31932
RedSquirrel
Reg: 06-13-08

07-24-13 01:51 PM - Post#4072476    
    In response to 3 Little Ladies

Colleen, that's pretty. We'd have to put steps in for it, since that slope is about 1:4!

 
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