Even the best new construction garages I've found are lacking... but one day a builder will come along and turn out a proper garage. In the mean time... until builders start coinsulting me about these things... here is a list of things that you should be ready to correct.
- Electrical outlets - Three is not enough. For some reason, many builders seem to want to put one outlet on each wall. That isn't enough for ANYONE that is going to do anything in the garage. For a two car garage, seven 110V outlets would be better (two on each side wall and three on the back wall). Add one more for a three bay garage, and three more for a four bay garage (all on the back wall). If you really want to amp it up, add one more above each bay for a cord reel and drop-light.
- 240V outlets - The number is three... two would be ok, but three would be better. Welder, air compressor, plasma cutter, wood-working equipment. Actually, for a wood-worker, three would be a minimum.
- Cabinetry - Nice garage cabinetry would set one builder apart from EVERYONE else. The cost would be a couple thousand dollars, tops... but it would make a significant impact on the presentation of the property. Even if it were just displayed in the models and offered as an option, it would help the builder stand out.
- Lighting - How many times do I have to say that a 60 watt bulb (or a 18W CFL, which is WAY inadequate) over each bay is NOT lighting? It doesn't take that much to change that over to a few 4' shop lights. Again, it would really set a property apart.
- A sink - Either have a mud room just inside from the garage (tile floor, please) or a laundry style sink in the garage. It is indispensible for a clean-up before entering the house. Not only will the car guy appreciate it, but the wife of the car guy will appreciate it. The plant enthusiast will appreciate it, too. in fact, anyone that cleans up after someone that gets really dirty will appreciate them being able to knock off a layer before the touch anything inside.
Now, if we are dreaming...
- HVAC - The garage needs a dedicated system. We don't want to send welding smells or gas or anything else into the house. We also want to be able to easily turn it off or have a different temperature from the house.
- Compressed Air Lines - One of the absolutely essential tools for a car person is an air compressor. And the air gets used all over the shop. Dragging hoses everywhere is annoying... but having a nearby air oultet is wonderful. We add them... It would be nice to have the plumber put copper air lines in the wall before the sheetrock goes up...
As the garage gets bigger, some of these get more important, others get less important. And of course, the demographics can have a lot ot do with it. Detached garages need more equipment than attached garages.
If you are a builder around Gwinnett County... call me. We'll talk. If you are a buyer around Gwinnett County, GA, and you are a car person, call me... I know what you are looking for.