Carport Building 101: How Do You Get Started

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car port outside the house

If you need shelter for your vehicle but cannot afford to build a garage (at least not yet), then a carport is the way to go. With a little time, effort, know-how, and the right tools, you can practically build one yourself. But, before we get to the building part, you have to plan the process carefully.

Building a Carport: How to Get Started

Of course, it will be a lot easier if you hire professionals adept in building carports in Brisbane and the Sunshine Coast, but if you’re somewhat of a handyman, then you can cut on costs by DIY-ing it. Well, that is if you’re confident with your skills. If not, then let the experts handle this job. You wouldn’t want to spend more by fixing an improperly built carport or worse, start again from the beginning.

Step 1: Get those permits in order

Since a carport is technically a structure, it is should still comply with local building codes and regulations as well as the National Construction Code (NCC) by the Australian Building Codes Board (ABCB).

The local building authority will take a look at your carport designs and see which ordinances cover your plans. It is best to prepare more than one option. If your neighbourhood has a homeowners association, you might also want to consult with them about certain neighbourhood regulations.

Note that a carport only has two side enclosures. Adding a third will automatically turn it into a garage that also has different construction code requirements.

Step 2: Choose your materials

Your choice of materials matter. While carports are usually made of metal and wood, your approved design and plan will determine which direction you are to go with your building materials. There are also available building kits of either wood or metal from DIY shops. Depending on the kit quality, expect to spend anywhere between a few hundred Australian dollars to AU$14,500. You would also want to consider your home’s overall style and design in choosing the materials for your project. Unless you want your house to have an eclectic vibe, choose materials that will go well with your house’s look.

residential car port at the house

Step 3. Check out what’s underneath

A lot of utility providers have lines buried underneath the ground. You will want to make sure that you do not hit or damage any utility line which could amount to thousands of dollars in damage repairs. Call your local utility companies to come out and indicate where the buried lines are placed so you know which areas to avoid sticking your shovel in.

Step 4: Secure the footing

While carports do not need a deep foundation unlike a house, it still needs a stable footing to keep it upright even in a storm. The most common way of securing posts is placing them at a depth of two feet into the ground and pouring concrete on them. If your area is prone to stronger winds or you’re making a much taller carport, place them at a depth of 3-feet or more.

Step 5: Identify the requirements

Before anything else, identify and list what your carport’s requirements are: the type of vehicles that will be sheltered (a sedan, SUV, truck, RV, a boat, etc.), its size, its location, its aesthetic, and a lot more depending on your preference. A typical one-vehicle carport usually measures 9 x 16 ft. Any vehicle bigger than a midsized sedan will need more room. For the aesthetic, match it with your home’s design so it adds to its curb appeal as well.

The process of planning and building a carport is relatively easy compared to building an actual garage. If you follow the steps we have listed, everything else will fall into place. Happy building!

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