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Home Away From Home: San Diego Garage Transformation into Guest House

If you live in the part of the country where basements and attics are rare and home costs outweigh the square footage, then you may be a good candidate for a garage conversion.

San Diego residents Justin and Stacy Brown recently transformed their nonfunctional garage into a beautiful finished guest house and home office. With only 840 square feet in their 1930s-era house, the additional 320 square feet that the garage added to their living space provides them with not only an additional bathroom, but also home office and family room.

“From our initial drawings and concepts, the garage has every detail we wanted down to the custom closets and fun color-changing LED lighting,” said Stacy Brown, homeowner.

View a video of the LED strip lighting

View the PDF version of the project spotlight

Rental Property
A detached garage conversion is also a perfect way for a homeowner to make a little extra money by using the space as a rental property. In this case, the homeowners also added a private gated entrance from the driveway so future owners could consider this option.

By properly insulating the garage, adding windows and also installing an energy-efficient heating and air conditioning unit in the space, the new guest house complies with local ordinances and building codes and is guaranteed to be warm in winter and cool in summer.

Energy-Efficient Lighting
LED lighting was installed in the entire guest house to help save on extra energy costs - and to add a little extra flair. The LED light bulbs in the ceiling lights are wirelessly controlled by a Lutron Pico Wireless remote synced to Lutron Maestro Wireless Electronic Low Voltage dimmers. This allows the user to turn the lights on/off or dim them from the couch!

The built-in cabinets in the laundry and wet bar area really bring the room alive with their color-changing capabilities. RGB Double Density LED strip light was installed above and below the cabinets and are controlled with an RGB LED Touch Controller.

“Everyone that visits the house loves to play with the new color-changing LED lights,” said Brown. “I can’t believe how energy-efficient they are. They use less than 50 watts of power!”

This LED controller allows them to use the color wheel to select any color they desire or choose one of the 11 pre-programmed modes, which includes flipping through all the colors. White light can also be created with this strip light for standard lighting use.