Expand Your Living Space
Are you in need of some extra room in your home for family members? In-Laws, children, nannies, or caregivers may be your reason for expansion. There can be several ways to expand your home either within the footprint or to incorporate an addition to the existing home. Still, another way to create space for your family’s needs is to convert a garage into an inlaw apartment. Many times garages are attached to the home and become easily accessible as extra living space.
Our homeowner lives in a much sought-after neighborhood in a pastoral setting. This family had a detached garage on their property close to the main house and chose to convert the space to a wonderful in-law apartment. The garage also included horse stalls that weren’t being used. Our design team worked together with the family to create a fully equipped apartment with two separate entrances as well as a single-car garage space. This provided a safe home for the family member to reside independently yet be close to others if help was needed. Having a covered place for the car also helped during Maryland’s inclement weather season. The covered entrance keeps snow and rain off the vehicle and allows the occupant to move from car to home safely and comfortably.
Previously the building was used as a barn for horses as well as a garage. Several horse stalls that flank the single-car parking space were kept intact and are great storage places for lawn furniture and garden implements. The other entrance to the apartment is from the beautiful treed backyard. This allows the homeowner’s mother to have friends and family over for a barbeque or just to sit and chat over a beverage. The view is green and lush and a neighboring horse farm creates the perfect country setting.
Converted In-law Apartment
With over 800 square feet, the client was able to create an open floor plan that gives a light-filled spacious look and feel. When entering the in-law apartment you find yourself in the main living area with seating, dining, and a full kitchen. Several windows along the wall facing the pastureland allow natural light to flow and a side door allows easy access to the beautiful backyard. A full-size dining room table provides plenty of seating for visitors and the kitchen sports a peninsula roomy enough for preparing a feast. The entertainment center has a central location and is the perfect space for everyone in the open concept layout to enjoy a movie or television program.
Bedroom, Bath and Closet
The bedroom is located in the rear of the apartment with a bathroom adjacent. A curbless design for the walk-in shower is perfect for aging in place as is the well-lighted vanity and grab bars. A good deal of space was allocated to this bathroom to allow for walkers or wheelchairs if needed. Selections were chosen carefully and make the space beautiful and inviting. Two entries to the bathroom allow for guests to enter from the living area and the resident to enter close to the bedroom.
For more information on aging in place or universal design check our post.
Utilizing all the space in this lovely in-law apartment our design incorporated the laundry area within the large walk-in closet adjacent to the bedroom. This master closet/laundry layout has become quite popular for everyone looking to live life more efficiently. What could be more perfect than the place you remove clothes to also wash and dry them? For those considering aging in place, this can be a great help to keep from having to carry heavy laundry from one part of the home to another. For other closet ideas and designs see our closet and storage page.
Are you considering an in-law suite for a family member or caregiver? Consider converting a garage to avoid much of the cost to erect an addition. Do you have an attached garage? This can work even better allowing you to access the main home easily offering the option of a shared bathroom and laundry. Even choosing to share the kitchen can keep the space needed to a minimum creating only a sitting area and bedroom in lieu of a full apartment.
If you do not have a garage or would choose to build an addition for your inlaw apartment we can offer designs to help find the best plan for your property layout and home. Many options are available and our design team can help you find the perfect one for you and your family.