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how to connect a detached garage to house

How to Connect a Detached Garage to House - The Complete Guide

Having to trek back and forth through the rain, snow, and cold to get from your house to your detached garage can be a pain. At the same time, fully attaching your separate garage to your home may not be feasible or preferred.

The good news is there are options in between to conveniently connect your detached garage that provides covered access. Constructing a breezeway or covered walkway between the buildings keeps you clean and dry as you move between them.

detached garage with breezeway

This complete guide covers everything involved with linking your detached garage to your house. Follow along to learn the right way to plan, build, and enjoy a covered connection between your structures.

Key Takeaways

  1. Get proper permits and approval before starting construction on a breezeway or covered walkway between a detached garage and a house. There are zoning laws and building codes to follow.

  2. Carefully design the walkway to be wide enough for moving items back and forth. Materials should match your home and be weather-resistant. Consider adding a door into the garage.

  3. Build a sturdy framing structure and roof to form the covered passage. Pour concrete or install pavers for a smooth walking surface. Add lighting for nighttime visibility.

  4. Linking the buildings boosts curb appeal, and convenience, and can increase property value. Avoid weather hassles going between spaces.

Evaluating If a Garage Connection Is Allowed

Before getting started, you first need to make sure linking your garage to the house is even allowed. Local zoning laws may prohibit or restrict covered walkways between buildings on your property.

Connecting a garage often requires permits too. So expect to visit your local building department to gain approval before breaking ground.

Here are key factors to research:

  • Setback requirements for distance between structures
  • Maximum lot coverage limitations
  • Height restrictions for covered walkways
  • Aesthetic rules like permitted materials

With proper permission secured, you can move forward with planning.

detached garage with covered walkway

Designing an Effective Connection Walkway

You have lots of design options when planning out how best to link your garage and house. The right solution depends on your needs, budget, lot layout, and aesthetic tastes.

Consider working with an architect on design plans you can submit for permits. Their expertise ensures proper structural engineering and compliance.

Factors to decide on include:


Popular options include wood, composite decking, concrete, brick, stone, or paved asphalt. Consider weather resistance, durability, maintenance needs, and how well the material matches your home's existing exterior. Wood requires staining and sealing while masonry is very durable.

Walkway Width

The walkway should be wide enough for two people to pass through comfortably, about 4-5 feet wide. If you plan to move items like lawnmowers between the garage and yard, make it wider to accommodate, around 6 feet.

Covered or Open Top

A roof offers full protection from the sun, rain, and other elements. Open walkways are exposed. In-between options like trellises or lattices allow some light through while still offering some covering from above.

Scope of Connection

A simple open walkway connects the buildings. For more protection, enclose part of the walkway to create a mudroom for storing coats, shoes, etc. More extensive projects require more building permits.

Garage Door Access

Consider adding an access door directly from the new walkway into your garage for convenience. The placement of the door and walkway should factor in easy access to/from both structures.

When planning your detached garage design, review our comprehensive buyer's guide for detached garages. It provides useful insights on size considerations, layouts, materials, customization options, and more when constructing the ideal standalone garage.

detached garage with breezeway and second floor covered walkway

5 Steps to Connect a Detached Garage to Your House

Once your architectural plans are made, you can begin construction on the covered walkway between your house and garage. 

The first step is to clear any trees, bushes, or debris between the two structures and level the ground so it is prepared for the installation of the breezeway foundation. Dig trenches in the area to sink support posts and secure the foundation. Use thick wooden 4x4 posts or steel beams that can be firmly planted into the ground. These posts will provide structural support for the roof and walls. 

Next, build the basic framework including roof rafters and side framing using 2x4 or 2x6 lumber. Consult your plans and building codes to determine the appropriate dimensions and spacing between structural members based on factors like the roof load. Carefully erect the walls and roof to form the basic shape of the covered walkway.

Once the framing is in place, the roof can be finished off using dimensional asphalt shingles or metal roofing panels that aesthetically match the existing home roofing. This important step protects the walkway from rain, snow, and other elements.  To select the right roofing material consider the following information given in the table: 

Material Durability
Asphalt Shingles 20-30 years
Metal Roofing 50+ years
Rubber Roofing 15-20 years


The side walls can then be enclosed with siding and trim boards that coordinate with the home's exterior finishes for a cohesive appearance.

Inside the framed structure, pour a concrete walkway surface or install patio pavers to create a smooth path between the garage and the home. This provides a sturdy surface for walking or transporting items like lawnmowers back and forth through the new breezeway.

Finally, install exterior lighting such as pendant lights or post lamps to illuminate the covered walkway at night for safe passage. Other final touches can include adding decorative elements like planter boxes to make the breezeway an attractive part of your home's landscape. 

Take care to properly construct a stable, structurally sound walkway that follows building codes. Rushing through this project can compromise safety and durability.

7 Key Tips for Constructing a Seamless Connection

Follow these pro tips when planning and building your detached garage walkway:

  • Get HOA Approval if Needed - If part of a homeowners association, get their blessing first for the project and intended look. This prevents any issues.

  • Hire a Structural Engineer - Have a structural engineer assess the garage and home to ensure they can safely support being connected.

  • Make It Wide Enough - Size the walkway to be at least four feet wide to comfortably accommodate moving larger items when needed.

  • Use Durable Roofing - Don't skimp on roofing material quality. Use at least 25-year asphalt or steel roofing that withstands weathering.

  • Include Gutters and Downspouts - Properly handling rain runoff prevents premature deterioration. Direct water away from the foundation.

  • Get Help Digging - Rent equipment like a bobcat, backhoe, or trencher to make digging the foundation and paths much easier.

  • Landscape Around the Walkway - Strategically plant foliage to complement the covered walkway and link the home visually to the garage.

breezeway connecting house to detached garage

Do Connecting a Detached Garage Boost Property Value?

Along with adding convenience, linking your detached garage to your house also increases curb appeal and property value. Home buyers love covered walkways.

Here are key reasons a breezeway can boost your home's value:

  • Added Curb Appeal: The architectural detail makes your home exterior more unique and eye-catching.

  • Protection From Weather: Not having to go outside to access the garage is a major selling point.

  • Potential for Addition: The foundation could allow for expanding living space between the buildings someday.

  • Versatile Usage: Using the space for storage, a greenhouse, grill zone, or lounge area.

  • Structural Support: Modern materials like steel beams provide sturdy support.

When it comes time to sell your home, highlight this covered link as a value-adding upgrade to potential buyers.

Final Words

As you can see, constructing a covered walkway between your home and a detached garage takes work. But the payoff is well worth the effort for protection from the elements and added real estate value.

By following the guidelines provided above, your project should go smoothly from initial planning to final completion. Take time to research and gain proper permits. And don't cut corners during construction.

Before you know it, you’ll be strolling back and forth between your buildings with complete comfort. No more cold hands or soaked shoes!

Finally, realize the dream of seamlessly moving between your garage and house. Just be ready to field requests from neighbors to build them a covered connection too after they see how great yours turned out!


How much does adding a breezeway to connect the house and garage cost?

The cost of building a breezeway can vary greatly depending on the design, features, and materials used. However, you can expect to spend anywhere from $40,000 to $150,000 for a breezeway

Can I attach a detached garage to my house's existing driveway?

Yes, it is possible to attach a detached garage to your house's existing driveway. However, you may need to make certain modifications to the driveway to ensure smooth access between the garage and the driveway. It is recommended to consult with a contractor to determine the best approach based on your specific situation.

Does attaching a detached garage require any additional insulation?

Yes, when attaching a detached garage to your house, it is important to insulate the shared wall to maintain energy efficiency and temperature control. This helps prevent heat loss or gain between the garage and the rest of the house. Make sure to use proper insulation materials and techniques to ensure optimal insulation performance.

What are some potential challenges I might face when attaching a detached garage to my house?

Attaching a detached garage to your house can present certain challenges, such as ensuring proper structural integrity, aligning the roof lines, and addressing any existing differences in foundation levels. It is important to hire a professional contractor who has experience with this type of project to help navigate these challenges and ensure a successful attachment.

What are garage-to-house doorway options?

Typical garage access doors include flush steel doors, wood doors with windows, and sliding barn doors on a track system. Choose a style that matches your home.

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About The Author

Andy Wu - Resident Expert

Andy Wu - Resident Expert

Andy Wu is the resident backyard products expert and hails from Atlanta, Georgia. His passion for crafting outdoor retreats began in 2003.

As a fellow homeowner, he founded Backyard Oasis to provide top-quality furnishings and equipment, collaborating with leading manufacturers.

His main focus is on sheds and generators!

In his spare time he like to hike the tallest mountains in the world and travel with his family.

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