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In case you're thinking of building your own garage.


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In case your thinking of building your own garage. I thought I would post up the low down on building mine and the costs so far.


Well I have 5 old Lotus cars and a double garage, so I would love a second three car garage.


My budget was £7,500 .... not a lot for a building project of this size.


I put in for planning permission in Match 2013. To keep the costs down I drew up all the plans myself so only paid the councils fee of £385


It was passed in June 2013. It had to match my house (bricks roof style and tiles), be lower than 3.5 meters and 1 meter away from the house opposite


Below is a mock up I sent in with the plans to show how it should look when done




Next I cleared the ground where it was going,took up all the block pavers, hired a mini digger and got to work



The council made me dig down 1.8 meters because they where worried about tree roots even through there are no trees anywhere near me !




I then poured tonnes of concrete in then bricked and blocked up to the height the floor would be. Cost so far is £3,000




Next I had to have 16 tons of hard core then a layer of sand then a radon membrane then 15cm of celertex then a DPC membrane then some steel re-enforcing then the 15cm concrete floor


I had spent £5,000 and had only got foundations and a floor ! so no building at all.


Below is the walls starting to come up






The picture above it how it looks at the moment I have now spent £7,000


So to get walls and roof I think I'm going to need another £3,000


I have not paid a builder, I have got at least three quotes on all my meterials to keep my costs down. However I have built it to the standard you would build a house to, as who wants to be cold in the garage ? I do spend a lot of time working on my cars and planed on having a log burner in there a beer fridge and a 50" TV  


My wife will not be happy with me if I spend more that £10,000 and have to use our savings, so keep your fingers crossed for me that I can keep it on budget.


Its been very hard work so far, every weekend and alot of evenings I think I could have finished restoring both my Elans if I had spent the same amount of time in the garage rather than building one.....


Wish I had never started ? hum..



Please let me know If you have a S1 esprit for sale 🙂

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You're not shy for taking on a project, looks good so far mate! 


My friend budgeted £5k and 6 weeks to redo his front garden and drive. He's 3 months and £10k in so far and only putting walls up, the drive and blockwork isn't even started! 90 tonnes of sandy loam were to blame, he was expecting to excavate 10 tonnes max and he's sacked his builders, they couldn't find a level in a computer game let alone with bricks and datum! 

88 Esprit NA, 89 Esprit Turbo SE, Evora, Evora S, Evora IPS, Evora S IPS, Evora S IPS SR, Evora 400, Elise S1, Elise S1 111s, Evora GT410 Sport

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 planed on having a log burner in there a beer fridge and a 50" TV .......


..........I think I'm going to need another another £3,000


Just corrected your estimate.


Seriously though, 1,8m foundations! How much do they think Lotus weigh?

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Matt, your abilities always amaze me!    I was impressed with how quickly and thoroughly you restored your Esprit S1 -- now to see you building a large garage by yourself from scratch - wow!

Tony K. :)


Esprit S1s #355H & 454H

Esprit S2.2  #324J

1983 Turbo Esprit, Investor Edition #03

1991 Esprit SE

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I am a quantity surveyor.

For the majority of people who have no idea what that means, amongst other things,I calculate and then manage the cost of construction projects, of all types.


typical car space is 2.5 x 5m = 12.5 m2

Your garage looks like it is about 3 and half spaces wide, so approx. 44m2 total floor area.

For a simple garage I would expect a construction cost of around £350-500/m2 depending on specification / materials chosen etc, so £15-20k in total (if you got as builder to do it).


Have you done the brickwork yourself also? - if so very impressive.


good luck for completion.

construction and property consultants : My company

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It's going to be fantastic when you are finished though - just keep looking at that mockup drawing, it's a car freak's dream home!


What you are building is more akin to a single storey domestic extension, not a garage, so you have done miracles for the outlay, and I'd pay you for brickwork like that! Too right, make it nice and warm, if I ever built another attached garage it will have radiators.

In the garage no-one can hear you scream 

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Great work, well done. I had a couple of quotes for a double garage and don't think I was going to get much change out of £40k so shelved it for a while. I may revisit it and see what I can do myself.


I'll get around to it at some point.

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I did get a bricklayer lad up to help me get started, he was great he gave me a lesson and worked for just £100 a day.


With the winter arriving here in the UK I'm thinking of getting him up again to speed things up, he can lay double what I can in a day.


Trevor- Builders quoted me £30,000 -£35,000


Would be nice to get it done by Christmas



Please let me know If you have a S1 esprit for sale 🙂

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Just corrected your estimate.


Seriously though, 1,8m foundations! How much do they think Lotus weigh?

foundations have to be future proofed these days.So many people at a later date want to put another floor on a garage and make  the garage habitable and the foundations and insulation of the past were not up to it and often the cheapest way out was demolition and start again.Matt interested to know what tiles you can use on a pitch that low

hindsight: the science that is never wrong

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My big garage that I built before we left Western Australia only cost $12,000 with me erecting it myself. $14,500 if the mob I bought the shed from did it. Then there was about $800 for electrics. It was a colorbond one though, as cold in WA isn't that big a problem compared to the UK.

Some of those builders quotes seem outrageous.

All we know is that when they stop making this, we will be properly, properly sad.Jeremy Clarkson on the Esprit.

Opinions are like armpits. Everyone has them, some just stink more than others.

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Matt interested to know what tiles you can use on a pitch that low

Pete you found the tricky part of the build, the roof was a real thinker, Even builders I chatted to did not know how I was going to roof it with it being such a odd shape and the roof height having to be so low and using the same tile as my house.


Below are the dimensions and what I came up with.






I came up with a 25 deg hiped roof with a flat center section. (Above) The center section I was going to board with sterling board then lay up fiberglass on top and on the last lay up to match the tile finish, add sand and a dye.


I think the roof is going to cost just over £2,000


I can't think of another way of doing it, please let me know if you can  :)



Please let me know If you have a S1 esprit for sale 🙂

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I have been intending starting a thread about my current garage build but not got round to it yet but I will do soon.

I live in a 1930 house that had an old standalone corrugated asbestos garage... quite big for its time actually.

I have wanted a proper garage for years so I bit the bullet and did it. 

I have two Esprits, a Triumph Vitesse, a Ducati Super Sport and a Honda to house so it was going to have to be big... oh and I wanted some decent storage space.


The solution was to build a garage that was high enough inside that I could store the two Esprits one above the other if required (if I need the space for yet another toy :) )


The Vitesse would go along the back and the roof trusses were built to support the weight of the two bikes being hung from the roof.


The floor is strengthened to provide anchorage for a ramp / storage system and the floor has been polished rather than left rough.


The roof is tall enough to stand up in the middle but not walk about in.


Should look like a real man cave by the time the bikes are lit up with spots and there is some memorabilia on the walls :)


I live in Aberdeen where the building material of choice is Granite which was mined from a local quarry which has been out of use for many years now.


I had an extension built on to my house 15 years back an rather than use the typical Fyfe stone material or rough cast it, it was all built using reclaimed granite... (you can see the gable end in one of the pics) so it looks original.


I decided to build the garage using a granite skin as well which jacked up the cost big time and like the extension, it is also going to be slated in reclaimed slates to make it fit in.


The garage is 6m wide X 8m long X 5.4m high


The architect couldn't find proper views of an Esprit to use for the plans so he used a 911(!!!) for the front view.


As for the budget, well I couldn't do it for a £7500 budget… the granite option alone ran to £4000 but if I was going to do it I was going to do it right.


I have /had a decent size of garden but it looks like its swamping it now but these things always look worse half way through and once the ground has been levelled and terraced to make it look right I am sure it will be great.


Anyway more to come but this is an idea of what I have got myself into!









Edited by GordonMasson
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Let's hear it for temporary can do a lot with a few bits of wood, hardboard and some tarpaulin!! £200 tops, iirc. And no planning consent needed...


PS Yours looks much better and is bound to last longer!

Scientists investigate that which already is; Engineers create that which has never been." - Albert Einstein

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Hi Matt,


With regards to your roof, I personally wouldn't do it like that with a flat roof on top, it will always give you trouble and the weathering detail between flat roof and top of tiled roof will always be problematic, especiallt at corners.

I would either try one of two options:-

1. Keep the ridge line from one hipped end to other with bespoke trusses gradually rising at the same roof pitch. This would mean having 12 separate central roof trusses. It will be slightly more expensive than making 12 of the same but will save you heaps of money in adding the flat roof and awkward detailing at top.

2. Keep the ridge height the same and have the roof pitch changing (going shallower) as the building gets wider. Looking at the photos (I can't make out exactly) but I think you may have Marley Mendips or Wessex? Both of these go down to roof pitches of 15 degrees and above. I have seen these below this and as long as you have a good membrane underneath then it will never leak. I reckon you can with with pitches between 17.5 and 25 degrees to get where you need to be.


I can knock up a quick sketch if you need one. Just let me know.







David Walters

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Yay a man who understands roofs :)


Thanks Dave for the infomation, My tiles are Marleys and mendip interlocking, but they are granular so the minumum pitch they specify is 25 deg :(


I am not keen on the roof pitch changing option (2) I made a small model a while back and decided against it.


I dont understand your option 1 but I am intrigued ! if you would be able to do a quick sketch I would be very grateful




Ps Gordan I wish as far along as you ! will you be finished by christmas?

Edited by Matt-watts

Please let me know If you have a S1 esprit for sale 🙂

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Ps Gordan I wish as far along as you ! will you be finished by christmas?



P.S. Matt - I wish I could do it for your budget and then I would be able to buy Christmas presents :santa:

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No use if you want a matching roof but I used single length roof sheets, 2 steel sheets with a 80mm foam core. This was a 7 by 7 meter garage and 2 of us put the sheet on and stiched it down in 1 hour. Edge trims took 2 hours more. Its very rigid with the foam core and good insulation. Sits on single span z purlins. It has a plastisol coating on the sheet. We also put it up 20 years ago on a commercial building we own and have had no problems. Its a very shallow angle but still works fine.


Edited by mdw
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  • Gold FFM

Hey guys I live in a mid 60's bungalow with the traditional single garage with up and over door and over the past 5 years I have restored a triumph stag, a spartan, half built my T4 camper van and rebuilt 3 lotus complete with engine and gearbox changes. Now I would love any of your garages but just dont get time to do that type of project so Gordon once you complete your one as your the nearest I know where to come for a dry workshop, mind you I could do a swap for old 100G and save me the bother, do you think Wendy would mind.

Edited by johnpwalsh
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agree 100% witk dave on the flat roof and detailing.Were you intending to use trusses or hand cut the roof.Was the reason for the flat part due to height restriction

hindsight: the science that is never wrong

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