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Garage Capacity Standards Please Help

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ambz3734

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Feb 9, 2017
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State
Nebraska
Hi; this is my first thread EVER; but I need help as I'm being screwed by my home ins company. I have read everything for my state, county, etc on building codes and standards and can't find a set standard as to what would differentiate an attached garage from being a 2 vs 1 car garage. From what I see there isn't anything set that legally defines that. I am aware of what the sizes normally are like mostly I'm seeing minimum 20 X 20 with a 16ft door but still nothing legally binding to that reference. The reason I need clarification on this is because I have a 20 X 20 attached garage with a 15ft door that will only fit one car. I bought the house end of December and my Appraisal from then shows it's a one car attached as well as the county assessment records... all of which I've provided to my insurance company. When I sat up the ins I put 1 car capacity for the garage as well as submitted my appraisal that says the same as they required and all was fine. They sent a 3rd party inspector out (I wasn't home so garage was closed) who based the capacity on the 20 X 20 measurements only took some pics of the house and that's it. I've spoken with them and they tried to help but ultimately it's through the insurance who has now after seeing what the 3rd party inspector put changed my policy to a 2 car garage and won't correct it. They continue to come back with a difference excuse every time regardless of my pics; real estate appraisal also with pics; and the county property assessment all of which backs that It's a one car garage. Their last excuse is 'the standard is 20 X 20 measurements' which I know is BS And I just would like to be able to show them evidence of the standard or lack there of. I read a forum on here that supported this but it was from 04 so I thought I would ask If anyone here has ran into this or knows where to point me to. Also; yes I know I need to change insurance company's as they are practicing bad faith. Thanks for any help and please go easy on me like I said first forum EVER...
 

Mark K

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 27, 2004
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Indiana
I'm unaware of any 'standard' that defines 1 vs. 2 car but yours sounds like a 2-car garage to me.

Many of the homes in the newer cookie-cutter subdivisions have garages that are 20 x 20. I've seen some that are slightly smaller. And yes, you can get two small cars inside.

I'd think the insurance co. would be more concerned about size than the name. I've seen some 1-car garages that are larger than your 2-car and some 2-car that are twice the size. Replacement cost should be based on size, not names.
 

ambz3734

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Freshman Member
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Feb 9, 2017
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State
Nebraska
I'm unaware of any 'standard' that defines 1 vs. 2 car but yours sounds like a 2-car garage to me.

Many of the homes in the newer cookie-cutter subdivisions have garages that are 20 x 20. I've seen some that are slightly smaller. And yes, you can get two small cars inside.

I'd think the insurance co. would be more concerned about size than the name. I've seen some 1-car garages that are larger than your 2-car and some 2-car that are twice the size. Replacement cost should be based on size, not names.
Thank you for the help. The thing is it's a 1930's home and besides the door being 15 ft the entry point is actually 14 ft 2 in because Of the part of the wall that protrudes (in front) of the actual door. Also yeah 20 X 20 but there is also a staircase inside the garage foundation that leads to a basement door so you have to avoid driving into that. That's mainly why my real estate appraiser and others have understood it's only a 1... but you confirmed what I've seen which is no set standard and they knew the measurements (size) from the start but are obviously only caring about getting more money out of us because it added 40k to my dwelling and hence 20k to personal property... thank you for the response.
 

Mark K

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 27, 2004
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Indiana
.... because it added 40k to my dwelling and hence 20k to personal property... thank you for the response.
It added $40K to your replacement cost? Even if they go by name only an extra bay on a garage should cost between $10K - $15K. If there's finished area above, that's a different story.

Yeah, I'd be looking for another insurance company.
 

ambz3734

Thread Starter
Freshman Member
Joined
Feb 9, 2017
Professional Status
General Public
State
Nebraska
It added $40K to your replacement cost? Even if they go by name only an extra bay on a garage should cost between $10K - $15K. If there's finished area above, that's a different story.

Yeah, I'd be looking for another insurance company.
I know and yeah I'm going to it's just a matter of principle at this point. Looking elsewhere and working on filing a complaint with the Insurance Commissioner.. so frustrating
 

Artemis Fowl

Senior Member
Joined
Mar 16, 2004
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Michigan
So are you sure they are saying that the same size garage can have a 40k difference in value based on vehicle capacity? That defies logic unless they also consider what you may keep inside...but I thought that's what car insurance was for. For the record...I am not an insurance guy and I did not sleep at a Holiday Inn last night.
I would make sure I understood how they are pricing your improvements.
 

ambz3734

Thread Starter
Freshman Member
Joined
Feb 9, 2017
Professional Status
General Public
State
Nebraska
So are you sure they are saying that the same size garage can have a 40k difference in value based on vehicle capacity? That defies logic unless they also consider what you may keep inside...but I thought that's what car insurance was for. For the record...I am not an insurance guy and I did not sleep at a Holiday Inn last night.
I would make sure I understood how they are pricing your improvements.
I agree. The worst part about this is I actually AM a former licensed insurance producer and that's why it ticks me off so bad. You're exactly right it makes no sense what so ever! My vehicles are covered like you said through my auto policy...
 

ambz3734

Thread Starter
Freshman Member
Joined
Feb 9, 2017
Professional Status
General Public
State
Nebraska
I agree. The worst part about this is I actually AM a former licensed insurance producer and that's why it ticks me off so bad. You're exactly right it makes no sense what so ever! My vehicles are covered like you said through my auto policy...
And also yeah I'm positive the change from 'one car to two car' is what changed everything... no size in measurements, etc... just that
 

Walter Kirk

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 24, 2003
Professional Status
Licensed Appraiser
State
New Jersey
What difference does it make? The insurance company is insuring a 20 x 20 garage while you may only be able to store one car in it is still a 20 x 20 structure. By the way I have stored two cars and two motorcycles in my 17x20 garage.
 

Mike Garrett RAA

Elite Member
Gold Supporting Member
Joined
Jan 14, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Colorado
At 20' x 20' it's going to be classified by your insurance company as a two car garage for replacement value.
 
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