I Changed Our Ugly Garage Entry to a Welcoming One for Under $100 !

12 Materials
3 Days

While we have a really nice front door entry into our house, we rarely use it. Since we actually use our garage to park our cars, we almost always use the garage entry to get into the house.
When we moved into the house, as you can see in this picture, the entry from the garage to the house was ugly! Concrete steps and walls, bare drywall, exposed metal edging, exposed plywood and 2" x 4"s. 
I lived with this look for many, many years and then one day, I thought I'd attempt to make it purdy. I had already painted the door going into the house, changing it from grey to brown & while that helped a bit, it only helped a bit.
Once I decided to 'fix' the entryway, I needed to decide how. The easiest update I could think of was using bead board to cover the exposed 2" x 4"s and drywall. So that's what I did. I applied two coats of exterior red paint to the bead board and then began installing it. I started with the left side of the entry, the 1/2 wall behind the work bench. I nailed the sheets of bead board to the drywall on all three sides - behind the bench, on the 4" edge & along the stairwell. It was super easy to do as the wall was the same height as the bead board so there was very little cutting involved.
With the sides of the wall covered, I decided to enlarge the top of the wall by creating a shelf so I would have a handy place to store the things I used all the time like painters tape, tape measure, safety glasses, etc. I looked at various board widths and settled on a 2" x 6" to create the shelf. I measured the length of the wall where the shelf would sit and cut the board to fit. Before installing it, I sanded down the rough edges with my orbital sander then applied stain with a rag and once the stain was dry, I brushed on 2 coats of polyurethane. To secure the board to the drywall, I used four 3" brass screws and covered the screw heads with decorative wooden buttons which I had also stained and polyed. Once the shelf was finished, I then added trim using corner molding along the 4" end of the wall.
The next part of this project was to cover the base of the 2" x 4"s that went from the top of the drywall to the garage ceiling. I used three 4" x 4" decorative blocks that I found at Habitat (I usually buy these at Home Depot). After sanding & painting the blocks, using Elmers Wood Glue, I glued them to the studs and to each other where they met at the corner. I secured them to each other with painters tape while the glue was drying. When the was dry, I added a small piece of trim to the top also with wood glue. 
 I then added a decorative trim at the top of the bead board just below the 2" x 6". The new shelf fit snuggly under the metal outlet box and it had no cover plate. I bought a wooded plate, painted it red & cut the bottom to fit in the new space.
Now that the drywalled 1/2 wall was done, I moved onto the section around the doorway. The drywall on either side of the door was narrow and went from 4" at the top of the doorway to 1 1/2" along the cement at the lower 1/2 of the doorway. the wood.
Since the bead board is thin and the strips I needed were narrow, I used a coping saw to cut
 As you can see, I didn't do such a great job making the cuts straight but I wasn't worried since I planned to trim all the edges once the bead board was in place. I started at the bottom of the door and worked up from there. Once all the strips were cut to fit, I applied two coats of the red paint and then installed them. Since this area was small, it just took a few finishing nails to keep the bead board in place.
The last wall to be made purdy was the outside wall. Looking back, I think I should have added insulation behind the bead board on this wall of the garage. I may end up doing that one day if we get around to insulating the two outside walls of the garage. But, for now, on the exterior wall, I removed the handrail, nailed the bead board to the studs, added trim along the top and edge then reinstalled the hand rail.
Now that the walls were done, it was time to figure out what I could do with these steps. Did I want to add carpet? No, that would just get dirty with all the sawdust I create in the garage. Maybe paint them? Stain them? I decided that stain might be the way to go.I started researching concrete stain to see what my options were for changing the color of the cement. Now, if I liked cool colors, I might have just applied sealer to the existing cement grey, but since I prefer warm colors, I needed to change the color to something that would go better with the red walls and brown door. I lucked out and found a can of Behr Premium water-based stain at Habitat, it was tinted brown - perfect! I brought it home. 
The walls and stairs looked pretty porous, not smooth and shiny, so I didn't buy anything to rough them up before applying the stain. Starting at the top of the stairs, I used a paint roller to apply the stain to the steps and walls and a paintbrush to apply it to the corners and top of the wall. The instructions said to let the stain dry a good 24 hrs before applying sealer.
Once the 24 hrs were up and before applying the sealer, using small painting brushes, I added some interest with craft ink, creating a veining design. I waited another day to let the ink dry then applied the water based, high gloss sealer with a paint roller and brush similar to how I applied the stain. The instructions said to apply two coats about 3 hours apart. I followed those directions and just loved the look!
Boy what a difference this update made to our garage entry! I appreciate the look every time I walk into the house from the garage - that would be almost daily! If you have a garage entry, I hope this inspires you to make it purdy!Since I had the paint, tools, painting supplies, nails, screws, stain, polyurethane on hand, this project cost less than $100. Depending on your tool stash & materials on hand, your cost will vary.All the before, during, after pictures can be found on my blog at:https://www.myperpetualproject.com/lets-make-the-entryway-purdy/
To 'top off' the project, I added a decorative piece of wood along the top of the door. I got this odd little piece at Habitat and was just waiting for a place to use it.

Suggested materials:

  • 8' board 2" x 6"  (Home Depot)
  • Stain  (On hand)
  • Polyurethane  (On hand)
See all materials

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Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!


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4 of 11 comments
  • Ida9464
    on Jan 28, 2020

    Looks great! You could even add a couple things on the red headboard to make it even purdier

  • Lois
    on Feb 7, 2020

    I love it!! The floor is awesome and red makes it pop!

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