A “man cave” gives you a space to relax, entertain and hang out with your favorite gear, music or toys. It is your place and it should have your signature style. While a man cave can work in many places – a basement, a shed, an office or a guest bedroom – a garage is the perfect spot. Garages are spacious, give you the chance for indoor and outdoor fun, and they often present a blank slate for creating the man cave you have always wanted.
If you are planning on transforming your garage into a man cave, these top 8 tips and considerations can help you get started:
- Will you keep your vehicle(s) in the garage or will you have the whole space for your other gear?It helps to know if you need to work around a car or motorcycle, or if you can park any vehicles in the driveway or on the street when you’re planning your man cave space. Think about your options before moving to the next step for your man cave.
- Start from the ground up with new flooring. While concrete can work for a man cave, if it’s dirty and stained with oil, it’s not exactly ideal for a cool hangout space. Adding a new sub-floor with insulation can provide both comfort and warmth. If you stick with concrete, then add some rugs or carpet remnants so you and your buddies don’t have to stand on a cold, hard floor while playing darts or pinball. Other good options include stone epoxy – which is clean and durable – and interlocking rubberized tiles. Carpet is more expensive, requires more maintenance and will have to be ripped out if you decide to convert the cave back to a garage again.
- Update the walls. Is your garage attached or detached? Detached garages will take a little more time and effort to turn into a man cave, since they don’t benefit from the heat or air conditioning of your house, but it is relatively easy to add insulation and then seal the warmth up with drywall. Insulation also buffers noise, if you like to play your drum set or favorite music without constantly being told to turn the volume down. If you like a grungy, unfinished look, no need to worry about paint, but a coat of paint can create a fresh vibe for your man cave. It might be tempting to go with a darker color, but unless you want a true dungeon feel, lighter, neutral colors can make the room feel bigger, especially if windows are limited.
- Raise the roof (or think about your ceiling). Some guys like the look of rafters up above for a raw, unfinished feel. But if you want to hang a cool fixture or want to finish off the ceiling, you can drywall and paint here as well. This also gives you the chance to think about ceiling fans or lighting fixtures.
- Let there be light.Most garages have terrible lighting, since they are generally designed for entering and exiting. If you are going to spend some time in your garage-turned-man-cave, however, you’re going to want more than one weak overhead light. Plan for electrical outlets based on TVs, gaming systems, sound systems, refrigerators, and lighting for pool tables or poker tables, for example. If you do the electrical rewiring ahead of time, you won’t have extension cords to trip over – and it’s always better to have too many outlets than not enough.
- Think about shelves and storage. Do you want shelves for your tools and toys? Or built-in cabinets to hold your games, drinks and extras? Take a look at opportunities for shelving and storage so you still have room to hold the things that were previously in your garage while making your man cave cool and comfortable. If you want to save money, experiment with cinder blocks for storage and as a table.
- Find your furniture. Gone are the days of a couple of guys drinking beer in old lawn chairs in a garage. Today’s man caves are complete with game tables, high-end electronics, comfortable seating and more. You can play around with the layout and even try out room dividers if your man cave will be multi-purpose. Make sure you still have room to move.
- Customize your cave. Do you want a baseball theme with a custom sign and your collection of game-day memorabilia? Or a music theme with your instruments, albums and gear from favorite concerts? You can find one theme or add a variety of personalized options, from signs to swag. Add the finishing touches and then it’s time to enjoy!
A garage can be a perfect spot to create your man cave – with a little work, a little organization and a little imagination, you can create the cave that you have always craved.