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Garages, whether attached to or detached from your house, are incredibly useful features in a home: they protect cars from Mother Nature, provide storage space for outdoor equipment, and sometimes function as additional living space. If you’re considering adding a new garage to your property or remodeling an existing structure for this purpose, you may be considering how much does a detached garage add to property value.
These things aren’t cheap, and as a homeowner, you want to ensure that any money you pour into the home will increase its value when you’re ready to sell. This guide will break down the cost of adding a detached garage to your property, the different options available, and answer how much value one of the structures can add to your home’s value.
Cost to build an attached garage vs. detached garage
The cost to build a detached garage can vary greatly depending on the size, materials used, labor, and location. Also, since the contractor cannot use the walls or power from your current home when constructing your standalone garage, it will cost about 10% to 15% more than an attached garage.
According to HomeAdvisor, as of January 2023, the typical price range to build an attached garage is $16,216 to $39,077, or $50 per square foot. The typical price range to build a detached garage is $19,200 to $45,000, or $40 to $70 per square foot.
Cost of prefab structures
For homeowners who want a simpler option rather than building a detached garage from the ground up, you can find pre-fabricated detached garages for a fraction of the cost. The average cost for a prefab detached garage is $15,000, but you can find options for less than $100, like the DuraMax Vinyl Garage Building Shed with Foundation Kit, and as much as $150,000 like some the beauties Barn Pros offers (these structures might also provide additional living space, in the form of a barndominium — hence the higher price).
Here are just a few options currently on the market:
Sheds Unlimited offers a wide selection of prefab garages you can choose from:
- Standard workshop single-car starts at $7,409. It features a raised panel garage door, two windows, and a single door. You can choose between wood siding or vinyl.
- Single-story workshop two-car garage starts at $20,618. It features two raised panel garage doors, two windows, and a pre-hung single door. You can choose between wood siding or vinyl, but you can also get this model with an attic (starting at $28,925) or a full second story (starting at $36,499).
Home Depot has a smaller selection of prefab garages to choose from:
- Best Barns Sierra 12’ x 24’ Wood Garage costs about $4,985. This model doesn’t have many customization options, but you can choose optional windows and a walk-in door. This kit does not come with a floor.
- Best Barns Dover 12’ x 20’ Wood Garage costs about $7,214. The high walls offer plenty of space to add storage shelves and still can fit one car inside. Everything is included with this kit, even the materials necessary to build the floor.
Additional design costs
When we’re trying to answer the question, “How much does a detached garage add to property value?,” we also need to consider what other touches are added to the garage’s interior. There are a lot of great features that can be added to customize the functionality and look of your detached garage, all of which can impact its effect on your property value.
There are many choices when choosing a light fixture for a shed. The national average for a light fixture is $533, but you can choose basic ceiling lights ranging from $90 to $230. In the name of energy efficiency, LED lights use 75% less energy than regular lights and last 25 times longer.
If you’re using your detached garage as more than just a garage (like a workshop or a makeshift workspace), you’ll need storage. The type of storage system you choose will impact the cost. You can choose simple garage shelves made of wire, like the HDX Chrome 4-tier metal wire shelving unit for $76. You might need a full-on storage system like the Husky 8-Piece Heavy Duty Welded Steel Garage Storage System for $3,800.
Even if you’re using the garage as a workshop that’s bound to get messy, you probably don’t want to have stains all over the concrete. You can paint the concrete with a water-based epoxy finish like the Rust-Oleum EpoxyShield 2-part Gray Gloss Garage Floor Epoxy Kit for $200, which can cover a 2.5 car garage floor). Professional installation can cost between $1,320 to $3,080.
It’s not unusual for someone to want to make sure their security system covers their garage in addition to the main parts of the home. Installing a new security system can cost around $700. However, you can opt for a simple alarm like the Ring Alarm Security 5-Piece Kit for just $200.
Second-story living space
Adding an apartment above a detached garage could raise the cost to $110 to $250 per square foot, depending on whether you’re adding an entire apartment or a simple loft room above the garage space. Don’t forget the building permit, which might cost an additional $150 to $1,500, depending on the project’s scope and your municipality, and always make sure you meet zoning and other requirements.
How much does a detached garage add to property value by location?
Much like an attached garage, a detached garage contributes to your home’s value since it adds usable square footage. Angela Miller, a certified appraiser in Tidewater, VA, with over 25 years of experience, says she gives as much value to a detached garage as an attached one, especially in the country. “I also give some value for an unfinished, accessible second floor,” she adds.
A “functionally adequate” garage in a typical market might add $5,000 to $25,000 worth of value, Mike Ford, a Southern California-based general certified real estate appraiser since 1986. In high-end markets, the value might be higher.
For example, if a homeowner in Austin spends an average of $45,419, they have the potential to add $29,000 to the value of their home. However, if a homeowner was to build one of these structures in Kansas City and spends an average of $14,568, they could add $9,469 in home value, on average.
Are detached garages worth the investment?
Top real estate agent Scott Freeman, who sold 86% more single-family homes than the average agent in Riegelsville, PA, says, “It’s definitely become very popular to have additional living spaces like carriage houses or apartments above garages.”
“It depends on the availability of other off-street parking and demand [for] available on-street parking,” Ford says. “Where on-street parking or large driveways are not present, the value of a garage goes up quite a bit.”
“Where I do most of my business, we have properties with detached garages. We have a lot of people with hobbies and toys, boats, four-wheelers, and workshops,” Freeman adds. “If you have a business — like in our area, we have a lot of landscapers — they don’t necessarily want this big garage attached to the house. They want it separate to store their things and keep noise and whatnot away from the living space.”
In other words, it’s often worth the investment for the use a homeowner gets from the garage and can return a decent amount on your investment when you go to sell. You can get a better sense of what to do if you reach out to your real estate agent and ask them how much does a detached garage add to property value. You might be surprised by their answer.
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