Like any other building, a garage requires a sturdy frame over which to install the protective materials, such as roof shingles and siding. Basic materials -- such as wood, metal and concrete -- may be used for this purpose. The cost of framing a garage from these basic materials varies widely, depending on a number of factors.
Size and Materials
Two main factors determine the cost of framing a garage. The first factor is the size of the garage, which generally cannot be compromised. The second factor is the building materials, which generally allow for some leeway. Framing a garage with wood boards, for instance, is a less expensive option than framing a garage with metal. Other cost factors include the amount of insulation, if any, you use in the garage walls, and the type of wood with which you choose to build.
Before building the walls and roof of a garage, you should plan the floor. Garage floors are generally poured cement or concrete, with concrete being the cheaper of the two since concrete consists of cement mixed with other ingredients, like sand. The cost of pouring the garage floor depends primarily on the size of the floor, because this determines the amount of material needed. To make the job easier, factor in a mixing truck rental, which generally costs between $100 and $200 per hour, depending on where you live.
Once you pour a garage floor and the wall footings, begin framing the garage walls. The walls of a garage have the same basic makeup of the walls inside a house. Wall studs, placed every 12 to 16 inches, provide the support for the wall and both the interior and exterior side of these studs have plywood or another type of wood paneling for cover. The length of each wall, and the type of wood you choose, determine the cost. Pine, for instance, runs substantially cheaper than hardwoods.
If you plan to hire a contractor, the average costs of framing a garage, according to both Ask the Builder and Cost Helper, is around $35 to $45 per square foot. At those rates, even a small garage can cost around $10,000 to build. Other options include building the garage yourself, which costs about half as much as using a contractor or buying a premade garage kit in which the pieces snap together much like a puzzle and the materials run about the same price as building yourself.
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