How to Prepare your Home for a Bonus Room


One of the hottest trends in home renovation is the bonus room.

Bonus rooms are typically an extra room that is added to the home above the garage. While some bonus room are built for simple tasks like additional storage or extra attic space, today more and more homeowners are taking the bonus room to new heights. They are used as a home office or another bedroom, and being loaded with features like a fireplace or plumbing for a bathroom.

In this guide, we’ll review a few tips and tricks for a successful installation of a bonus room.

Adding a Bonus Room

A bonus room is a little more complex than a typical home renovation. The following tips give you a high-level idea of the steps you should take in adding one.

  • Truss and Support: A truss provides the support for the floor and roof of your house. Most garages aren’t built to support a room above them, so you’ll need to install a truss. Today, you can purchase a truss designed to fit above the garage and provide support for both the floor and ceiling of your bonus room.

  • Finishing: The truss will provide a frame for the bonus room. You’ll need to prepare the space for the interior finishing. This will include the secondary framing, the rough-in for the electrical system, and installation of the HVAC system. Keep in mind, you may need to do some renovation through the garage and break the envelope of the house.

  • Insulation: The HVAC, electrical and any plumbing you may need will require air sealing and insulation. The pipes and systems need to be kept warm and should be included inside the thermal enclosure of your home. It’s a good idea to prevent air movement in the new space, especially from the garage where exhaust and cold air can cause a hazard and negatively impact comfort. You’ll want a sealed floor system from the garage to prevent air flow.

  • The Roof: Adding a bonus room will likely add to the square footage of your roof. You’ll need seamless coverage across the roof. A hasty addition or flawed connection between the old roof and the new roof above the bonus room can lead to a leak and turn your new room into a nightmare. It’s a good idea to update with new roofing for the entire home to best accommodate the bonus room.

The First Steps in Installing a Bonus Room

Keep in mind, not all bonus rooms are above the garage. Depending on the layout and design of your home, you may need to adjust your plan.

Before doing any work, you should talk to an expert in home renovations and roofing. Even the smallest, simple room needs to be integrated with the whole home design, and will require expertise that most homeowners and do-it-yourself’ers don’t have.

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