Building a garage

Some worldly people on here always know more about stuff than I do, and are more reliable than google.

Can anyone give me the lowdown on building a garage - mainly pitfalls and potential cost?
It’s mainly going to be a training area and storage but it does need to be an actual garage to go with the house, so isn’t a ‘garden room’.

Google throws up lots of disparate stuff that either looks low budget DIY (either rubbish or beyond my skill set) or terribly expensive (25-50k+). Needs to have some semblance of wood on the outside as it is a rural property in ANOB. Current status of site is ‘mud patch’. (!)

Thank you :slight_smile:


first off - I presume you have checked that what you’re planning is within permitted developement rules? a good link here as a starter -

the next question - which might follow on from the above as you’re in an AONB - is material choice.
wood, timber, metal, concrete etc - all of which will come at different costs, looks and speed of construction.

you can get cheap timber garages but they are often rubbish in the long term. brick and tile roof will cost more but will take more time and will be there for your lifetime. you can also get prefab ones using concrete or metal walls which kind of sit between timber and brick but often look ugly (could be an issue with the AONB).

I think the 1st thing you need to resolve is the planning issue and then put a budget on it and decide how to move forward from there. if you have neighbours with garages have a look at what they have as no doubt you’ll need to conform with a local “style” to keep planners happy - even permitted development builds can fall foul of planners if there are lots of objections to what you’re putting up.

and I’d talk to a couple of local builders to get their input and quotes - they’ll know all about the planning side so will offer advice (for a price of course!).

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Not up on this a huge amount, but we’re in AONB as well. I don’t recall the ‘style’ being a particular factor when we got our extension built, but the permitted development measurements were a lot less in AONB tha not i.e if we weren’t in the AONB (say 2 miles up the road) then we wouldn’t have needed planning at all (from memory).

Other than that, i can’t be much more help i’m afraid.

A few doors down the road are doing the same, and he has his rather rudinmentary plans on the Council Planning site at the moment; awaiting approval. AONB also.

Thanks everyone.

I will keep delving.

I know in our instance that there is a bit of a grey area between what is permitted and what needs specific permission for, so I need clarification on that.

It’s just whether we need an independent builder, or use a company. I had always presumed that you used a ‘garage company’ but it seems that contracting a builder may be the way to go.

ANOB around us is all brick and flint, and black cladding/barn type things.

talk to a planning officer at the local planning department as they will usually offer good advice as they are familiar with all the local matters and restrictions.

tbh, if I was having a garage built I’d use a local builder. if you don’t know any ask around for recommendations or look around at local build jobs going on and see if they have an ad board up (most do).

the other thing you might want to think about on a new garage - put a pitched roof on. 2 reasons - a) extra storage space in the roof void (boarded or open - your choice), and b) roof for solar panels so you can power the garage electrics without needing a hook up to the house, or feeding into the house supply if excess generated.


and way easier to keep warm if you ever want to use for a room other than a garage, like a home office or man cave.

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I was speaking to a builder about a detached two car garage on my property. One cost element that I hadn’t considered was a) insulated or uninsulated, and b) plumbed for mains water + drainage, both of which together added c. £4k in costs when we were kicking numbers around.

(Edit - clicked the wrong “reply” button.)

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Pretty sure nearly all new-builds are single skin aren’t they? Our last house was, and it had a high apex roof, which was insulated under the tiles; I think. We had some big bits of plyboard for storage above head height, but you couldn’t make much of the space because of all the structural beams. This was a double, with a wall separating them to about 7ft high.

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most garages are as they are usually only ever used as a garage so don’t need a cavity wall or any insulation. but of course you can get one built to whatever spec you need/want if building from scratch and you have the budget. a good timber garage with insulation would probably cost less than a single skln brick one.

Am teasing out bits of info from everyone’s replies. Thank you.

(single.double skin/ brick/timber, pitched roof - I like the idea of solar.Don’t need drainage, but will need electrickery )

don’t say no just yet. if the garage isn’t too far from the house, why not put your laundry in there and get it out of the main house?? we don’t have a garage but a very large summerhouse which acts as our pain cave but is also plumbed so we have the washing machine and dryer in there. keeps the kitchen a damn sight tidier!!

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Whether you need planning permission or not you are still better off going down the route of “lawful development”. This covers you with a permitted development certificate issued by a building inspector so that when you come to sell your house it is significantly easier and no additional insurances are required.

It’s a box ticking exercise but is fairly straightforward - and your contractor can be the main interface with the inspector. I didn’t need planning permission for a loft conversion but submitting all the plans and getting a private inspector that then submitted the certificate to the council just gives peace of mind.

The architect I used submitted all the plans on my behalf but as @gingerbongo refers to rudimentary sketches, it’s not difficult to do yourself. The private building inspection company I used charge £525+VAT back in 2017.


doesn’t that also ensure you have complied with relevant building regs??

Yes but for certain size developments you don’t actually need it. As noted, it just makes your life easier in the long run to show you’ve complied with building regs.

we did similar when we did the internal conversion to our listed house. We took out a wall and opened up the kitchen and dining room and whilst we didn’t technically need a Certificate of Lawfulness of Proposed Works (this applies to listed properties only) we were advised it might be useful for when we come to sell to show we’ve complied with building regs and the works do not affect the character of the property. (In reality they improved the character rather then detracted)