build an attached garage in Sims 3 with CFE

It’s easy and quick to build an attached garage in The Sims 3 with this method. Once you’ve done it a couple of times you’ll be able to add an attached garage to nearly any house in no more than two minutes – promise!

how to build an attached garage in Sims 3

This tutorial is for beginners. You need to have some building experience for this tutorial but no prior experience with CFE is necessary.

building attached garages with CFE

CFE BASICS

WHAT IS CFE?

CFE in an acronym for Constrain Floor Elevation, a cheat that allows extended building flexibility such as stretching or shrinking wall height, building taller foundations or building walls over very uneven terrain.

HOW TO USE CFE

how to use CFE

To Enable CFE

When in your lot, open the cheat window by holding down the Ctrl and Shift keys and pressing the C key. In the blue bar that appears at the top of your screen type in the phrase ConstrainFloorElevation false and press Enter.

The phrase must be typed in exactly as I’ve written it except that you may use all lower case letters if you prefer. It’s easy to make a typo so if at any time the cheat doesn’t work simply open the cheat window again and retype the code.

to enable CFE

To Disable CFE

This is not a cheat you want to have active at all times so it’s important to turn it off when you’re not using it. To disable it, open the cheat window and type in the phrase ConstrainFloorElevation true and press Enter.

CFE toggle switch

PREPARING TO BUILD

prepare to build the attached garage lot

1. LEVEL THE LOT

I cannot stress enough how incredibly important this step is! The ground in TS3 is not as even as it appears, causing all kinds of problems when building, and this is particularly true when using CFE. Believe me that it’s well worth the extra couple of seconds you’ll spend on it!

Select any floor covering. Drag the flooring right on the ground to cover the entire area where your house will be built plus a few extra tiles on all sides. If you need to stop and restart, begin over an already placed tile – not on a bare piece of ground. This will level out the minor imperfections in the ground and keep them leveled throughout the building process! Unless you have other plans for your lot it’s usually best to start from the sidewalk and work back so your house will be at sidewalk level rather than above or below it. The level tool will NOT even the ground entirely – do not use it instead of flooring!

Keep this flooring in place throughout the building process! Remove it only when all foundations, floors, walls, stairs and roofs have been completed.

2. PLAN YOUR GARAGE

Your garage needs to be a minimum of eight tiles long to accommodate the Parking Space object + a garage door; it needs to be at least four tiles wide to use a garage door; CFE will require an extra tile on the house side of the door. The total garage space must be at least eight tiles long x five tiles wide. It may be larger but it cannot be smaller. Hint: Making the garage six tiles wide will allow the garage door to be centered. It will also add more flexibility to add an outside side door to the garage if you want it to actually be usable.

3. TURN OFF AUTO ROOFS

You will be building right on top of the floor tiles you’ve already placed.

READY TO BUILD!

You will be building right on top of the floor tiles you’ve already placed.

STEP 1 – BUILD THE FOUNDATION AND ADD SOME WALLS

attached garage foundation and walls

Place foundation for the entire house area, including the garage.

Add all exterior walls and any interior walls that separate the garage from the house.

If you want a door leading from the garage to the house, decide where it will be so you can plan a landing. Here, I’ve placed red floor tiles where my landing will be. I’ve set my garage back two tiles. You can bring yours forward in front of the house a bit or make it even with the front of the house – this method will work regardless of the configuration. I’ve made it six tiles wide, rather than five, because I want the door to be centered.

STEP 2 – REMOVE THE GARAGE FOUNDATION

remove garage foundation

I know, you just built it but now it needs to go! Lower the walls to the fully down position and select the foundation tool. While holding down the Ctrl key, drag the foundation tool over the foundation in the entire garage area except where your landing will be. You’ll probably need to do this in two or three segments to avoid the landing.

Your garage will appear to be floating in the air!

STEP 3 – TURN CFE ON

turn CFE on

STEP 4 – ADD WALLS TO REPLACE THE MISSING FOUNDATION

add walls to replace the missing foundation

Make sure you’re at the top of the foundation level, not ground level. This will be easier if the walls are lowered to the completely down position.

Use the wall tool to add a wall at ground level all the way around the perimeter of the garage. The new wall will be full height and the existing wall will raise up to accommodate it.

When you look at what you’ve just done you’ll see that things are looking really weird…

build attached garage in Sims 3…don’t worry – they’re easy to fix!

STEP 5 – LEVELING EVERYTHING OUT

leveling everything with terrain tools

Select the Terrain Tools from the build palette.

Select the Level Terrain Tool.

leveling terrain

The floors inside the house have raised up to points at the corners where they meet the garage. We’ll level them out…

Beginning on a floor tile adjacent to a raised corner, drag the level tool over the corner and onto an adjacent tile. The corner will magically flatten out. Fix the other corner the same way. If you make a mistake and level something you didn’t intend to, simply click on Undo and try it again!

dragging the level tool

Page up until you can see the grid on the top level of your house. Obviously something needs to be done about this!

Starting at an edge of the lower level, drag the level tool diagonally over the grids until part of the lower level and all of the upper level are covered in green. Sometimes it can be difficult to finish leveling if you stop slightly short of where you intended. If this happens, simply click on Undo and try it again!

This looks better!

attached garage in Sims 3

STEP 6 – TURN CFE OFF

turn CFE off

You won’t be needing CFE any more so it’s time to turn it off.

Quick Tip

FINISHING UP

finishing the attached garage

Add a garage door and the car-spot parking space – both are available in the game’s buy catalog under Vehicles.

If you left a landing, add stairs and the door into the house.

NOTE: The pictured garage is painted entirely in the same green but some of the walls look gray. This is a result of the odd lighting in TS3 and isn’t anything you’re doing wrong! The more lights you have the better it will be but it’s almost impossible to correct entirely.

wall between the attached garage door and the house

When looking at the garage from outside, you’ll notice that the wall between the garage door and the house looks strange. I’ve removed the garage door and painted the one at the left in a beautiful scheme – it’s sure to make the neighbors leave town but it illustrates what’s happening. The lower segment of wall is actually stretched from the foundation level at the house to the full wall height level of the garage.

The good news is that vertical paneling or siding will cover it entirely. If that’s not an option, select the least offensive wall covering you can and/or you can cover it somewhat with a plant.

You’re done! You’ve just attached a garage to a house with a foundation!

finished attached garage

Finish all your building then remove the “ground tiles” outside of the house by selecting any floor tile from the build tools, holding down the Shift and Ctrl keys and clicking on any one floor tile that’s the type you need to remove. Remove the “ground tiles” from beneath the foundation the same way. If they get stubborn and refuse to be removed (it’s happened to me only once), drag the sledgehammer across them.

A very special “Thank You!” to Cyclonesue for sharing her keyboard graphic with me!

FAQS and TROUBLESHOOTING

Can I build a second story on my house?
Of course, once the garage is completed you can finish the building just like you would any other house!

I just paged all the way up and I have a roof, a really wacky roof!
You forgot to turn auto roofs off. No problem – just hit any section of the roof (not a gable) with the sledgehammer and the entire roof will vanish.

My house really doesn’t look right with such a wide garage – can’t I make it narrower?
Since TS3 Sims don’t really use a garage to drive in and out (actually the garage door doesn’t even work), you can “fake” a garage door with wall covering. Don’t forget, though, that you’ll still need it to be wide enough to accommodate the parking space and a side or house door if you want it to be usable space for your Sims.

I’m getting a “Covered by floor tile” error message when I try to add the wall in Step 4.

  • a) You forgot to turn CFE on. Go ahead and enter it and all should be fine.
  • You entered the ConstrainFloorElevation false code incorrectly. Re-enter it carefully (it’s so easy to make a typo!).

The garage went fine but now I’m trying to finish my house and my walls and floors are doing crazy things!

  • You forgot to turn CFE off. Use your Undo button to back up to the point before you started having problems then enter the CFE code.
  • You entered the ConstrainFloorElevation true code incorrectly. Use your Undo button to back up to the point before you started having problems then re-enter the CFE code.

TSR Workshop Pattern Tool Manual for The Sims 3

Previous article

Sims 3 Pattern Making Tutorial

Next article

You may also like

More in Guides