What Type of Paint Is Best for My Garage Remodel?

Blue Sky Builders garage paint optionsMany people use their garages for more than just housing their vehicles. A garage space can serve multiple purposes. For instance, it can be a work area for building or repairing cars or household appliances. A garage can also be converted into a recreational room for teenagers to hang out with friends, or even an office space for homeowners who are working remotely. During the COVID-19 pandemic, many Illinois residents have spent more time at home and thus may be thinking about renovating their garages to fit this stay-at-home lifestyle. One item that may be overlooked when starting construction or remodeling is paint. Selecting the appropriate type of paint is critical for both the outside and the inside of your garage. Read more

What Type of Lighting Should I Use for My Garage?

Blue Sky Builders garage lighting interior exteriorWhen building or remodeling your house and garage, there are many issues to address and decisions to make. From the color of the siding and roof shingles to the flooring material and garage door, it is crucial to research your options to make the best choices. One critical item to consider is lighting. During a garage remodel, you may want to think about the type of outside lighting in addition to the lights that will be installed inside the garage. Outdoor lighting can act as a safety measure to deter break-ins, while indoor lighting can be critical if your garage is being used for work-related tasks or vehicle repairs. Regardless of how your garage is going to be used, there are many different sizes, makes, and models of light fixtures that can enhance the look and feel of your garage space.  Read more

What Are the Advantages of Installing Windows in My Garage?

Blue Sky Builders garage window installationA garage often acts as a multi-purpose structure for many homeowners. Not only is it a safe place to house your vehicles, but you can use it to store gardening tools, bicycles, motorcycles, holiday decorations, or your children’s outdoor toys. Your garage also impacts your curb appeal when someone comes knocking, as it may be the first section of your home that visitors or passersby see from the street. An easy way to enhance the look of your garage overall is to add windows. Although many garages may already have a window or two on the side or back of the building, additional windows can be added in these areas or above the garage door. Windows are visually appealing, and they can provide more natural light if you use your garage for other purposes, such as a workshop or for game night with friends or neighbors. Any kind of window also makes the space feel bigger and brighter.  Read more

Common (and Not-so-Common) Garage Invaders in Illinois

Blue Sky Builders garage pest preventionWith the seasons changing and the weather proving to be persistent in its unpredictable shifting over the last several months, the likelihood of unwelcome visitors in your garage increases. It is important to know the types of creatures to be on the lookout for. This will not just prevent them from invading your garage now, but it will also help you determine whether a custom garage or garage remodeling project can help ensure that those uninvited guests do not make themselves at home in your garage.

Squirrels, and Termites, and Mice, Oh My!

A wide variety of pests, rodents, and other unsavory creatures can take up residence in your garage without you even realizing it, especially when the weather changes drastically. It is bad enough that many of them could do damage to your garage and what is in your garage, including your car. For example, rats and mice have been known to congregate under the hood of a parked car near the motor to help them stay warm in the winter. Some animals may even get more adventurous and brazen, attempting to break the barriers between your garage and home. Before long, you will have flies buzzing around your head in your kitchen or mice hiding under floorboards in your living room. 

Here are 10 “garage invaders” to keep away from your garage, your home, and your family:

  1. Termites and Ants—Both of these insects potentially present huge issues for the foundation and other structural elements of your garage, so if you notice them, take action immediately.
  2. Mice and Rats—While many suburban homes face seemingly innocuous field mice more often than rats, be aware that both can carry serious diseases. Keep an eye out for their tiny pellet-like droppings as a telltale sign they have invaded your garage, as they tend to be sneaky and remain out of sight most of the time.
  3. Opossums—While these odd animals are not as likely to show up inside your garage, be aware that they like to climb, and they could hide out in an attic or second level of your garage.
  4. Skunks—Unless you do not use your garage much at all, skunks are more likely to get defensive enough to spray and leave rather than dwelling, “gifting” you with a lingering and unmistakable stench but no permanent residency.
  5. Flies, Including Fruit Flies—If you keep your garbage in the garage, including your pets’ waste and any spoiled food, flies are likely to enter your space. Your best bet is to keep all garage doors closed when not in use, including the entrance to the home, as well as keeping all refuse properly disposed of and sealed tightly.
  6. Mosquitos—Make sure still water is at a minimum to prevent these disease-infested pests from taking over.
  7. Crickets—These insects would be relatively harmless to your garage were it not for their obnoxious chirping. Fortunately, they do not exactly come in “packs” to infest your garage, but even one chirping insect can be very irritating.
  8. Raccoons—If you do not keep your garbage cans tightly closed, or if your garbage is overflowing, these animals might get brave enough to follow the cans back into your garage, finding an unending supply of new garbage to forage through every night.
  9. Wasps, Bees, and Hornets—In most cases, these insects’ nests or hives tend to develop on the exterior of your house, but that will not prevent them from making use of your garage too.
  10. Squirrels—Squirrels are curious. They scurry about everywhere in search of something to nibble on. Do not make it easy for them to satisfy their curiosity.

Contact a Chicago-Area Custom Garage Builder

If you are thinking of remodeling your garage or having a custom garage built, be sure to hire a Downers Grove garage specialist who knows exactly what materials to use and what construction methods to employ in making sure your garage is safe from all pests, rodents, and other creatures. Call Blue Sky Builders at 630-852-8485 for more information.

What Are the Benefits of Adding a Second Floor to My Garage?

Blue Sky Builders two-story garage expansionA garage is an important part of your home. Although you may not put much thought into it when you purchase your dream house, it really is a vital component that is typically used on a daily basis. Whether you plan to use it as a safe place to put your vehicles or for storing other important items, you might want to consider the size of your garage. In many cases, a three-car garage is used to store two automobiles, and the third section is for storage. However, as families grow and accumulate things, you can quickly run out of room even with a large garage. If you are short on land space, the best option might be to build up on your garage rather than out. Putting on an addition such as a second floor to your garage can seem daunting, but the garage specialists at Blue Sky Builders can help you with this wise investment.

Multi-Purpose Space

Regardless of whether you have an attached or detached garage, it may be possible to add on to it by building a second story. With so many people working from home as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, another level in your garage can make the perfect home office if you do not already have one. Since it is connected to the garage, it is separated from the house, which ensures privacy. Adding windows allows for natural light in while you work, keeping it bright and airy compared to working in a dark and dingy basement. 

This type of add-on can also provide added space for you to safely store valuables, exercise equipment, or holiday decorations. In addition, it can be used as a recreational area or sleeping quarters as your kids get older or for visiting house guests. It can even be used as a quiet “getaway” from a bustling household or as a private reading nook. 

Here are a few ways that a second story on your garage can be used:

  • Home office
  • Kids’ playroom
  • Game room
  • Sewing/craft room
  • Workout facility
  • Storage location
  • Guest bedroom

Special Considerations

Before embarking on any type of addition to your home or garage, it is important to acquire the proper building permits from your town or village. Professional garage remodelers like those at Blue Sky Builders will be able to assess your existing structure to make sure it can support a second level. We can also advise you on how to best use your space by creating a design plan to accommodate you and your family. 

Contact a Chicago Area Professional Garage Builder 

Having a second floor in your garage can make your life easier and more enjoyable in many ways. Not only does it give you more storage space, but it can become additional living space as well. To create the space you desire, it is essential that you contact garage specialists who are skilled in bringing your ideas to life. The knowledgeable team at Blue Sky Builders has more than 40 years of garage building experience. Call our Downers Grove garage experts today at 630-852-8485 to get a free estimate.

Why Now Is the Perfect Time to Make Your Garage a Playroom

Downers Grove Garage Renovation SpecialistsWhen it comes to being a parent, the last thing you want to do is spoil your children. You want them to learn important life skills and build their character by allowing them to face forms of adversity. However, during these times, your parenting values may have shifted. While remodeling your garage or building a custom garage solely to accommodate your children’s playroom might seem like an unnecessary or frivolous pursuit, the truth is that you might be surprised at how useful such an upgrade can be during these unprecedented times.

3 Reasons to Convert Your Garage into a Playroom

Here are some productive ways a garage playroom can actually help your children’s development, and your family’s overall functioning, during this time and into the future:

  1. Avoiding Distractions: With the public health crisis far from over and the possibility of virtual schooling again in the fall, figuring out ways to keep your children occupied is critical. In fact, many employers are still encouraging work-from-home policies to ensure the health and safety of their employees as their businesses re-open. As many parents have learned over the last several months, working at home while fending off your children’s boredom — and potentially disruptive behavior — is no easy task. Giving them a place of their own to play will keep them secluded and busy when you have that important video conference or telephone call for work.
  2. Keeping Your Children Focused: That playroom does not have to be solely reserved for play; you might want to think about using it as a place where your kids can study, learn, and even take online classes in peace. This will become particularly relevant and helpful over the next month or two when school reopenings take full effect and many districts decide to engage in either fully-virtual or hybrid classwork.
  3. Maintaining a Clean House While Encouraging Creativity: There are certain playtime undertakings that can get quite messy. By relegating all such activities to the garage, you will not only keep your house cleaner, but you will also give your children the freedom to express themselves in a much more diverse way. From painting art and constructing crafts to building models and playing music, the rougher and larger garage space will open up a world of playtime possibilities for your children, all the while keeping any subsequent messes contained to one area.

Contact a Chicago-Area Custom Garage Builder

With the likelihood of working remotely and attending school virtually increasing by the day, now might be the right time for you to start thinking about converting your garage space into a playroom for your kids. Blue Sky Builders has been offering its customers creative garage solutions for decades, building a trustworthy reputation throughout the Chicagoland area.

If you are interested in this garage transformation or have other renovation ideas, call a Downers Grove garage specialist at 630-852-8485 to review your options.  

Source:

https://www.bobvila.com/slideshow/move-out-10-ways-to-expand-into-your-garage-47789

3 Simple Ways to Secure Your Garage from Home Burglaries

DuPage County Professionals for Garage SecurityWhile you might think that the recent stay-at-home orders would translate to a decrease in home burglaries, you would be surprised at how often the police are reporting house break-ins lately. In fact, many of these burglars had the nerve to break into houses even while homeowners were home and asleep in bed, which is a frightening thought. Although taking the usual safety precautions to protect your home against break-ins will help, there might be one vulnerability that is easy to neglect: access from your garage into your home. In those cases, there are a variety of garage services that can help secure your garage from intruders. These options include: custom garage building, garage hardware replacementsecure steel entry door system installation, garage door upgrades like electric garage door openers, even high-quality window construction. Even if you are not ready to invest in a major garage renovation or garage remodeling, there are still a few easy things you can do to secure your garage that are not too expensive or involved.

Improving Garage Security Is More Affordable Than You Might Think

While it is true that your garage does not house many of the most valuable parts of your home, including your family, it often can provide an easy accessway for burglars to enter through. In addition, most garages are considered separate entities from the house itself—more outdoors than a part of the actual indoor living space—so many people do not even consider securing them with the same intensity and vigilance as they do with other parts of the house. For those very reasons, many burglars view garages as worthwhile targets for intrusion in much the same way as obscure, rarely used windows. This is why you cannot afford to neglect garage security. Here are three easy and cost-effective ways to protect your garage from intruders:

  1. Install security cameras. The most affordable cameras still have HD quality and the capability to record to the cloud through WiFi. Also, many can be placed both inside and outside of your garage to keep tabs on all activity. The cameras will then alert you through your smartphone of any intrusions in your garage. Set them up at the garage entryway access door to both your garage and/or your house, near the inside of the garage door itself, and right outside the garage door to get everything covered. Some of the more expensive cameras, many of which tend to be meant for outdoor use only, including ones that feature motion-detecting flood lights or spotlights, are more heavy-duty and might require professional assistance for mounting.
  2. Install smart garage door openers. Especially with regards to upgrading your current electric garage door opener with a smart garage door opener controller, this is not too difficult or too expensive and can add an additional layer of security to your garage door (not to mention all sorts of modern-tech conveniences). Most of these smart garage door options let you monitor the open/close status of the door through your smartphone and some even integrate with video.
  3. Install smart locks or deadbolt locks on your garage entryway doors. Again, this is not too expensive and very simple, and doing so will make it much more difficult for people to break into your home from your garage even if they can somehow get into the garage itself. Many of the more cutting-edge options will let you keep track of lock/unlock statuses on your smartphone, too.

Contact a Chicago-Area Garage Expert

Even if you make any of the aforementioned changes to your garage security, you may not be entirely satisfied. You need something more substantial to truly put your mind at ease. To attain that peace of mind, reach out to a Downers Grove garage professional at 630-852-8485. Blue Sky Builders can review your current garage situation and let you know how to make your garage more secure, be it through new and improved garage doors, steel entryway doors, or any other number of other garage services.

Sources:
https://www.bobvila.com/articles/garage-door-security/
https://thecrimepreventionwebsite.com/preventing-crime-in-the-garden-outbuildings-and-garage/493/security-for-the-garage/
https://www.corporatetravelsafety.com/safety-tips/how-thieves-break-into-homes-by-the-garage-door/

8 Features to Consider When Converting Your Garage Into a Bedroom

Downers Grove garage renovation experts bedroom featuresEven though the Illinois Stay-at-Home Order may be coming to an end soon, many people have grown accustomed to sharing space in their home with others, and in some cases, large, multigenerational families have found themselves living together for both safety and company. Some family members may be considering long-term living arrangements, or families may be looking to make more room in their homes. Whatever your reasons might be, it is worthwhile to consider customizing your garage and converting it into a bedroom.

8 “Nice Touches” to Add to Your Garage Bedroom

There are two seemingly contrary questions you need to answer about garage bedrooms:

  1. What can I do to make my garage more like an actual, livable bedroom?
  2. What aspects unique to my garage can I use to improve my garage bedroom?

In consideration of these two questions, here are some great features you may want to consider adding to your garage bedroom during a renovation project:

  1. Bathroom—It does not have to be large, especially if space is limited, but if anyone is going to be staying in the garage bedroom, having their own private bathroom can be a tremendous feature. If you have a detached garage, you might even be able to add on a separate building for a more expansive bathroom that includes a shower and tub. 
  2. Special Entrance and Exit Doors—What better way to make people forget they are in a garage then to install doors that make it feel more like a part of the home. From heavy oak front doors to sliding glass doors in the back, there are all sorts of ways to use doors to your advantage.
  3. Skylight—Most garages seem dark and maybe even dank, and they could certainly use some brightening up to help people feel comfortable enough to sleep there. A skylight can let your guests or your family members wake up to direct sunlight from above. 
  4. Ceiling Fan—Helpful in function but pleasing in aesthetics, a ceiling fan can greatly increase comfort levels for those who will be spending time in your garage.
  5. Loft—Especially if your garage has particularly high ceilings, you might want to expand that space into a livable loft. This can make the garage feel more like a studio apartment that might be found in a downtown condo.
  6. Bold Designs/Textures and Colorful Paint—You will have more leeway and creative license with this bedroom; it was, after all, once a garage. In that sense, it does not necessarily need to follow the same design “rules” as other rooms in your home. Consider bright colors and bold textures and make it somewhere special.
  7. Kitchenette—While there is not enough room in most garages for an entire kitchen, there could be enough space for a few features or appliances. People who stay in this bedroom would love being able to cook their own food or mix their own drinks instead of having to go into the house for that. It would be like staying in a fancy hotel room.
  8. Creative Uses of Windows—This is yet another way to brighten up a dark garage. Consider atypical windows that work well with the garage construction in terms of design as opposed to the usual types of windows used in the main house. This can give the space some individual charm.

Contact Our DuPage County Garage Experts

With the proper planning, you can make your garage into a dream bedroom that will meet your family’s needs. Blue Sky Builders can help you build a custom garage that pushes the boundaries of what is possible when it comes to how you can use your space. Call a Downers Grove custom garage professional at 630-852-8485 to learn more about the ways we can help you create the best garage for your home.

4 Benefits of Remodeling Your Garage to Create Extra Living Space

Chicago area garage renovation expertsRecently, Governor Pritzker announced that the Stay-at-Home Order in Illinois will continue through May 31. As COVID-19 cases continue to create problems across Illinois and the nation—and with a vaccine possibly more than a year away—residents throughout the state are having to adjust to a “new normal” that will require them to stay closer to home more often than they have before, and possibly for a much longer period of time than they ever anticipated. The need to be at home so often necessitates a re-evaluation of your garage space. Could you use it for more than parking? Are there parts that you could build out into extra living spaces that could help you during this trying era of “COVID quarantining?” The good news is, if you do decide to remodel your garage to create extra living space, the benefits will not only serve you now during this crisis, but they will also benefit you well into the future. Read more

Why You Should Consider Installing Plumbing in Your Garage

DuPage county garage plumbing professionalWhen renovating your garage, there are many things to consider, including aesthetics, function, and safety. These renovations can get even more complicated if you plan on using your garage for more than just a place to park your car or store your tools. In those cases, it is a good idea to consider adding plumbing to your garage. 

6 Ways Plumbing Could Enhance Your Garage

If you would like to add additional functions to your garage, or if you are thinking of converting it to a different type of living space, plumbing might be critical to the development of your custom garage. By installing plumbing in your garage, you will be able to add useful features and functions, such as: Read more