This week I visited this project in Oakland which converted an existing detached garage into a studio cottage. We started this project a little more than a year ago and now it is very near complete. The owners are waiting on the Murphy bed to arrive, and they want to get new furniture for the cottage. But they have already hosted their parents in the cottage and their folks loved it.
I can see why they loved it. It is a big, bright room that opens out onto a shared deck and garden. It has all the modern conveniences and more than enough room to hang out, watch TV, cook, entertain, and generally enjoy life.
For those interested, converting the garage, which was built with permits in 1993, cost about $210/square foot. Converting existing built space usually costs about $175/sf. There were a couple of reasons this one cost more. Primarily, when you convert a garage into a dwelling, in California, you have to upgrade the earthquake resistance. That meant more work. We also had to upgrade the electrical and replace the roofing.
The owners sourced all of the finishes and cabinets as well as the doors and windows. I think they’ve done a terrific job.
Once the Murphy bed is installed and they’ve furnished it, I hope to go back and get more pictures. The owners are very happy and that makes me very happy.by