garage dimension

kolsenttuJune 17, 2007

I am a recent home purchaser and just received some troubling news from a neighbor. Apparently when the house we bought was built, the garage was built "about a foot shorter than standard". I have been searching for a code standard on garage dimensions, but so far have been unable to find. The city we live in uses the "International Building Code" as their adopted code. Does anyone know where I can find what the minimum size of a 2-car garage would be? I plan on contacting our realtor tomorrow to start what I think is going to be a very long process due to the non-disclosure by the seller. The depth of the garage is 15'7" from the step up to the house to the garage door, which is deep enough to park our small jeep, but not deep enough for my Grand Cherokee. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

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As far as I know there is no "code standard". Our present garage is 20' deep, a previous one was 24' deep and still too small for a car that we had at that time.
The standard that the neighbor is talking about could be what most of the homes in the area are built to.

    Bookmark   June 18, 2007 at 5:10PM
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kolsenttu, I doubt you are going to find anything in a national code. Sizes of structures are generally governed by local (city , deed restrictions, HOA , etc.) standards of aesthetics. For instance some HOA CCR's set standards for garage sizes to size of the home, usually to prevent people building monster garage homes, not small garages. Unless the seller represented the garage as a different size then it is, or they built it without a permit, I think you are wasting your money pursuing this. My wife has been a realtor for over 10 years and the only time she has seen buyers succeed against a seller is where there was overt deception (ie hiding the facts from discovery by the buyer) on the part of a seller or they unequivocally misrepresented the condition in the sellers disclosure. You certainly could have measured the garage before you bought the home and if the home was sold "as-is", your case gets even weaker.

    Bookmark   June 18, 2007 at 10:32PM
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I bet you could find that information from your cities web site. I looked up that type of info on my own in milwaukee and they gave very specific info about codes and regulations. They also had phone numbers for various offices that could answer those types of questions.

    Bookmark   June 21, 2007 at 9:17PM
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I think 15'7" is way too short to be useful. Mine is 19'6" and I think it's way too small. Look at it this way- many cars are in the range of 180-190" long which is 15' to 16' long. This would mean you would be absolutely jammed in touching bumper to bumper and could not exit the vehicle on the far side or you couldn't enter the house! And this is not accounting for longer vehicles like some of the larger SUVs. You really should have at least 2 feet of clearance in the front and rear which takes you to my size garage. Some of the reasons to have a larger garage: storage of items around the garage interior perimeter, a possible workbench, lawn equipment, shelving, space to work on vehicles if you are so inclined, etc. As a car buff, I have plans for a garage that is something like 30' x 30' so I have room for jacking the car up and maneuvering. A garage can never be too large, only too small. All this being said, I wish you good luck. I don't know what to expect - without knowing the house/garage design, it may either be easy or impossible to enlarge it. Another approach is a settlment from the builder. It would probably be easiest to build another garage and use what you have for a shed and storage.


    Bookmark   July 13, 2007 at 1:25PM
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Would the attached garage make a good library or den with a pool table? That's what my dad did after he built a 30 x 34 foot free standing garage.

Looking at plan books, most attached garages seem to be 22 x 22.

    Bookmark   July 15, 2007 at 12:02PM
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I feel for ya having recently gone through the same thing. The problem are these builders will cut corners any way they can and an extra foot or two of cement is one way they do it. In my case they also never finished enclosing the thing and that is what I have been doing for the past 6 months. Frustrating, but I have learned A LOT! Got my door on Friday and for my truck to fit I have to almost touch the bumper to the back wall and then remove the trailer hitch. It then barely fits but at least it fits. If I were you I would check into extending the length-costly or building stand alone. Or at least for now, build a side overhanging will just need 3 posts instead of the normal 2. That can be done pretty cheap and will give some protection.

    Bookmark   July 31, 2007 at 1:33PM
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