Budgeting for the Ultimate Garage Upgrade

Opting for a complete garage upgrade taps into an extra 200 to 400 square feet of space. It will also tap into your wallet. When budgeting for the upgrade, it is important to decide just what changes will be made and the cost of each.


If the garage is used for relaxing or working or functions as an extra bedroom, workshop, man cave, or some other similar purpose, plumbing is a necessity. A toilet and sink are the bare essentials. A sink large enough to use for cooking or a wet bar is truly an upgrade.

A garage with an existing hook-up for a washing machine will cost less than putting in new water lines. Water lines need to be installed before other upgrades take place.


The floors of most garages are in rough shape. The plain slab of concrete can be transformed into a fabulous floor with an epoxy floor coating. Epoxy gives concrete a clean, finished look. It hardens to a high-gloss polish that resists abrasions and scuffing.

Epoxy floors can last as long as 20 years. The process of preparation and application is similar to painting. The surface must be clear of previously applied sealers, wax, grease, and oil. Proficient do-it-yourselfers can install an epoxy floor.

If the goal is the ultimate garage upgrade, the job is best left to professionals who can complete the installation cleanly and quickly. Reputable epoxy installers can be found on Angie’s List.


More than likely, the garage is currently illuminated by one or more bare bulbs overhead. That configuration is not conducive to comfortable living or working. Plans for the ultimate upgrade will include replacing electric lighting with several fixtures.

Task lighting may be needed in particular areas. One or more windows may have to be installed. A new garage door that includes windows or is primarily made of glass may be a solution.

Cooling and Heating

Ductwork for cooling and heating may have to be extended to an attached garage. Detached garages will require an HVAC method.


Insulating the garage upgrade keeps the space at the preferred temperature. Insulation is applied before hanging drywall. Gaps and holes need to be caulked. The garage door is the largest insulation issue to address.


Some forethought will be needed to choose the right storage system for your needs. Ceiling mounted storage, pegboards, shelves, and built-in cabinets are all worth considering.

The average cost of a garage remodel is $10,728. The ultimate garage upgrade could be as much as $30,000. Knowing the cost up front may give you an idea of how long it will take to accumulate the funds or how long it will take to repay a loan for the project.