The Challenge:  Corner Lot on a Busy Street

As a general proposition, you can’t change a house’s location (at least not easily).

While it can still be a challenge, it’s much easier to change the location of the garage and driveway.

Why would you want to?

If the driveway backed up to a busy street, and the house sat on a large, corner lot.

Then, it might be a good idea to switch the driveway and garage to the west of the home, backing up to a quiet residential street, vs. the south side, where the driveway faced a busy road.

That’s exactly what the homeowner at 26th and Joppa in St. Louis Park’s Fern Hill neighborhood just did.


On a difficulty (and financial budget) scale, I’d place it somewhere between remodeling a Bathroom, and doing a whole Kitchen.

The existing garage had to be demo’d and removed, and the existing driveway and garage pad broken up.

Then, the yard had to be (re)landscaped.

On the other side of the home, a new garage and driveway had to be built.

And the city (and possibly the neighbors) would have been involved, because the owner needed a new curb cut (the general rule in most municipalities is one per PID (“Property ID Number”), unless there’s hardship.

Total cost to accomplish the foregoing?

I’d peg it around $40,000.

Will the owner get it back on resale?

I’d guess “yes,” especially given that the old garage was undersized and in rough shape, and the new garage is huge, and well, new (I know the home especially well because I sold it for a previous owner 3 years ago).

About the author

Ross Kaplan has 19+ years experience selling real estate all over the Twin Cities. He is also a 12-time consecutive "Super Real Estate Agent," as determined by Mpls. - St. Paul Magazine and Twin Cities Business Magazine. Prior to becoming a Realtor, Ross was an attorney (corporate law), CPA, and entrepreneur. He holds an economics degree from Stanford.

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