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How much does it cost to build a garage?

on 08/31/2023 | Reading time: 13 minutes

garage addition

A garage is more than just a place to park your car. It can serve multiple purposes like storage, a workshop, a gym, or even a home office. Building a garage constitutes a substantial financial undertaking, with expenses fluctuating significantly due to dimensions, materials, site, and personalization.

Types of Garages

1. Attached Garage

This garage is attached to the main house. It is usually more cost-effective to build as it shares a wall with the house and may share utilities like electricity and heating.

2. Detached Garage

A garage that is separate from the main house. It usually costs more to build, requiring separate utilities and a separate foundation.

3. Single Car Garage

A garage designed to accommodate one car. It usually measures about 12 feet by 20 feet.

4. Double Car Garage

A garage designed to accommodate two cars. It typically measures about 24 feet by 24 feet.

5. Custom Garage

A garage that is customized to fit the homeowner's specific needs, whether that is extra storage, a workshop, or a home office.

6. Garage with Loft or Apartment

A garage with a loft or an apartment above it. This type of garage is usually more expensive to build due to the added complexity and materials required.

Cost Factors

  1. Size of the Garage: It directly affects the materials and labor required. As the garage size increases, it will require more materials and labor.
  2. Materials Used: The materials used for the garage will significantly affect its cost. For example, a garage made of brick will be more expensive than one made of wood or metal.
  3. Labor Costs: Labor expenses will differ according to the garage's intricacy and geographical location.
  4. Permits and Fees: Permits and fees will vary by location and can add a significant amount to the cost of the garage.
  5. Utility Connections: If the garage requires electricity, plumbing, or heating, there will be additional costs for connecting these utilities.
  6. Site Preparation and Foundation: Preparing the site and laying the foundation can be a significant portion of the cost of the garage.
  7. Roofing and Siding: The type of roofing and siding chosen will affect the cost of the garage.
  8. Doors and Windows: A choice of doors and windows, in terms of type and quantity, will directly impact the cost of the garage.
  9. Electrical and Lighting: The cost of electrical wiring and lighting can vary based on the complexity of the installation.
  10. Heating and Cooling: If the garage will be heated or cooled, there will be additional costs for installing a heating or cooling system.

Cost Estimates

On average, the construction cost of a garage usually lies within the range of $20,000 to $50,000, though it can deviate higher or lower depending on the factors mentioned earlier. Here is a rough cost breakdown for different garage types:

  1. Single Car Garage: $15,000 - $25,000
  2. Double Car Garage: $25,000 - $40,000
  3. Custom Garage: $30,000 - $60,000
  4. Garage with Loft or Apartment: $40,000 - $70,000

Additional costs may arise during construction, such as changes to the plan, unexpected site preparation needs, or increases in material or labor costs.

Ways to Save Money

  1. DIY vs. Hiring a Professional: By possessing the necessary skills and know-how, you can achieve substantial cost savings by undertaking some or even all of the work independently. However, some tasks, such as electrical or plumbing, may require a professional.
  2. Choosing Cost-Effective Materials: Choosing more cost-effective materials can help save money, but be sure not to compromise on quality or durability.
  3. Reusing or Repurposing Existing Materials: If you have existing materials that can be reused or repurposed, it can help save on costs.
  4. Planning and Budgeting Ahead of Time: Careful planning and budgeting can help avoid unexpected costs and ensure the project stays on track.

Garage building cost calculator

To calculate the cost of building a garage, you can follow these steps and use the following formula:

  1. Determine the Size of the Garage: First, determine the size of the garage. The size of the project significantly influences the total cost. People usually measure the size of a garage in square feet.
  2. Determine the Cost of Materials: Next, determine the cost of the materials you will use. It will include the cost of the foundation, framing, roofing, siding, doors, windows, electrical, and any other materials required.
  3. Determine the Labor Costs: Determine the labor costs for building the garage. The complexity of the garage and its geographical location will be the driving factors behind the variation.
  4. Determine the Permit and Fee Costs: Determine the cost of any permits or fees required for building the garage. It will vary by location.
  5. Determine the Utility Connection Costs: If the garage requires electricity, plumbing, or heating, determine the costs for connecting these utilities.

Use the following formula to calculate the cost of building a garage:

Total Cost = (Size of Garage in Square Feet × Cost of Materials per Square Foot) + Labor Costs + Permit and Fee Costs + Utility Connection Costs


Let's say you are building a 400 square feet garage, the cost of materials per square foot is $50, labor costs are $10,000, permit and fee charges are $2,000, and utility connection costs are $1,000.

Total Cost = (400 * 50) + 10,000 + 2,000 + 1,000 Total Cost = $20,000 + $10,000 + $2,000 + $1,000 Total Cost = $33,000

The total cost to build the garage would be $33,000.

Note: This simplified example does not include all possible costs. The final price could differ due to various factors. Getting a detailed estimate from a professional before starting any construction project is always recommended.

FAQ Section

1. What is the cost of constructing a garage?

The expense associated with building a garage can fluctuate significantly due to factors like dimensions, materials, site, and personalization. Typically, the cost falls between $20,000 and $50,000 on average. Nevertheless, this range can vary considerably depending on your unique needs.

2. Does building an attached or detached garage result in lower costs?

It is usually cheaper to build an attached garage because it shares a wall with the house and may share utilities like electricity and heating. However, the cost can vary based on several factors, so getting a detailed estimate for both options is always recommended.

3. What is the most expensive part of building a garage?

The most costly part of building a garage can vary based on the design and location. However, the foundation, framing, and roofing are typically the most expensive parts.

4. Can I build a garage myself to save money?

If you have the skills and knowledge, you can save money by doing some or all of the work yourself. However, some tasks, such as electrical or plumbing, may require a professional. It is also essential to consider the time it will take to complete the project and whether you have the necessary tools and equipment.

5. Do I need a permit to build a garage?

In most locations, you will need a permit to build a garage. The requirements and costs for permits vary by location, so always check with your local municipality before starting any construction project.

6. What are some ways to reduce expenses during the garage construction process?

Some ways to save money when building a garage include doing some or all of the work yourself, choosing cost-effective materials, reusing or repurposing existing materials, and planning and budgeting ahead.

7. What is the typical duration for constructing a garage?

Several factors contribute to the timeline for building a garage, including its dimensions, the complexity of the design, and whether you're overseeing the project personally or enlisting professional assistance. On average, building a garage can take a few weeks to a few months.

10 Questions to Ask When Evaluating Garage Building Companies

1. How many years of experience do you have in building garages?

Experience matters a lot in construction. An experienced company will likely deliver a high-quality garage that meets your requirements.

2. Can you provide references or examples of past garage projects?

Ask for references or examples of past garage projects. It will give you an idea of the quality of their work and whether they have experience with the type of garage you want to build.

3. Do you provide a detailed written estimate?

A precise written estimate will detail all the expenses connected with the project, encompassing materials, labor, permits, and fees. It will help you understand the cost breakdown and avoid unexpected costs later.

4. Are you licensed and insured?

Engaging a licensed and insured company specializing in garage construction is crucial, as it protects in case of accidents or damages occurring during the construction phase.

5. Do you handle permits and inspections?

Permits and inspections are a crucial part of the construction process. Ask if the company will take your garage's necessary permits and inspections.

6. What is your proposed timeline for completion?

It is essential to have a clear timeline for the completion of the garage. Ask the company for a proposed timeline and whether they offer any guarantees on the completion date.

7. What kind of warranty do you offer?

A warranty will protect you in case of any defects or problems with the garage after construction. Ask the company about their warranty, including the terms and conditions.

8. Do you offer customization options?

If you want a custom garage, ask the company about their customization options. It may include custom sizes, finishes, and features.

9. Do you subcontract any of the work?

Some companies may subcontract parts of the work to other contractors. Ask the company whether they subcontract any of the work and, if so, how they ensure the quality of the subcontractor's work.

10. How do you handle changes or additions during construction?

At times, construction may necessitate modifications or additions. Ask the company how they make changes or additions during construction and whether it will affect the cost and timeline of the project.


Building a garage is a significant investment that can add value and functionality to your home. The broad range of factors influencing garage construction costs makes meticulous planning and budgeting imperative. Consider the size, materials, and customization options carefully to ensure you get the most value for your investment.

The opinions articulated in this piece are the guest author's and may not necessarily align with those of Crackerjack. Find more about staff authors of Crackerjack

About the author
Fancy House LLC
Fancy House LLC is a seasoned contractor and a prolific writer in the field of home improvement. With their extensive experience and expertise, they have earned a reputation for delivering exceptional results in construction projects of all scales. As a writer, they share their knowledge through well-researched articles that offer practical tips, advice, and inspiration to homeowners and DIY enthusiasts. With a friendly demeanor and a commitment to quality, Fancy House LLC is a trusted contractor who consistently delivers outstanding home improvement services and informative content.

Our Pricing Methodology

At Crackerjack, we assist many people each year with their projects. Our process involves collecting estimates from local professionals and conducting our own research, which we use to provide you with valuable price information. Please note that the prices provided in the current article are for informational purposes only and may change at any time. To receive a personalized cost estimate for your specific project, we recommend contacting a professional in your area.

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