Building a Garage or Carport In Your Home 

April 28, 2022
garage vs carport

Building a garage or a carport is a worthwhile addition to your home. It protects your vehicles from the elements and keeps them in good condition. With this addition, you don’t have to worry about taking your car to the shop every few months.

To guide your decision on the matter, we have put together some essential tips to put you on the right path.

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Garage vs. carport 

Do you know the difference between a garage vs carport? Stammering through the explanation? You are not the only one. While both offer protection from the harsh Australian weather, the two are pretty different. 

A garage refers to a structure that is fully enclosed on all sides. It will have a door that allows for the entry and exit of the vehicle. The benefit of choosing the garage is that it offers 100% protection against elements, deters thieves better, and possibly increases the property’s value. 

However, it is more expensive to construct and takes longer. You might also need a permit from the local government to put up a garage on your property. 

On the other hand, we have a carport. This structure is open on two or more sides, providing partial cover to the cars. It can be either attached to the house or be free-standing. 

The carport is more affordable in terms of construction cost, requires little or no expertise, and can be put up concisely. 

The first disadvantage of a carport is the reduced protection it offers. Your carport can be accessed partly by a thief. In addition, it doesn’t provide 100% protection from the elements. And in terms of value, a carport’s contribution is almost negligible. 

What will influence your selection 

Adding a garage to an existing house Australia

Before breaking the ground, homeowners must first comprehensively design the garage or carport. Two elements each homeowner should have in mind are the purpose of the additional construction and the available space. 

You might be looking to build additional space (especially for storage) for the house. In that context, a garage is the better alternative. It is a more flexible option and offers better protection. You can add cabinets and wall units to keep your valuables or collectible items in a garage. 

No homeowner has an infinite amount of space on their lot of land. In addition, you must think of how either the carport or garage will complement other features on the property. If the garage is on the side or front, it should blend in well with the other exterior features. 

As mentioned earlier, you might need a permit to construct your carport or garage. Councils interpret such erections as permanent structures, and you will be required to build them to a particular standard. We must note that the regulations and exemptions vary from one council to another. It would be prudent to check the specifications with yours. 

Do you want the carport attached to the house or a wholly detached setup? All these are viable options that a homeowner should take into account. 

The type, size, and number of cars will also determine the size of your carport or garage. You will need about 3.6 metres by 7.2 metres for the typical sized vehicle. This area will be adjusted for larger vehicles. 

Cheap carports are not recommended

Getting things right 

With the information available, you will have a concept of what to put up on your lot. You will also have consulted the provisions with the local authority and acquired all necessary permits. Breaking ground for your carport or garage will require a stable footing. 

You might not require a foundation when constructing a carport compared to when building a garage. But that doesn’t give you leeway to create a structure with a flimsy foundation. You might want to set about concrete posts about half a metre inside the ground for those living in a windy area. The holes might be deeper for those considering a tall carport. 

To dig a foundation for the carport, you can choose to attach it to the house using brackets. This offers homeowners some peace of mind since the carport is afforded additional support. Check the building code and community rules for this arrangement’s possibility. 

Building a garage requires a deeper foundation. In most cases, the foundation will be as deep as the main house’s foundation. After all, it offers more longevity and affords its owner better protection from the elements. 

Once you have set the foundation, the concrete slab comes next. The specifications of the slab are unique to a homeowner’s needs. You might need to lay down a thicker slab for those with heavy cars. Also, a garage would need a thicker slab than a carport. 

The final touches of your carport or garage depends on its location. Design the additional home features in a way that will complement the exterior’s décor and architectural style. A guest should not see the difference in construction. 

If the construction seems a tad bit too difficult, consider hiring a reputable expert in the area. 

Types of garages or carports 

  • Single Garage or Carport. The basic design only fits one car. 
  • Barn Garage. A detached type designed with additional loft space that serves as extra storage space. 
  • Double Length. For those with a narrow lot, consider going longer instead of wider. 
  • Double Width. This type is designed to fit two cars, side by side. 
  • Internal Garage. This is designed and built into the existing property. It involves converting an already existing room for this purpose. 
  • Breezeway or Portico Garage. It is a mix of a detached and attached garage. 

Carport attached to house? Or carport in front of garage?

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