Since garage storage is common for most families, even if a home is highly organized, there is no guarantee that the garage will be the same. The storage process usually begins a little at a time. When there is no room in the house for something, it is put in the garage – often with the intent to take care of it later, which may or may not happen. And … the garage begins to fill with every thing except the car.
You probably love your stuff. It is difficult to get rid of things that you may need. You may dream about remodeling, but time and money prevent that; so, the next best choice is to organize your garage, creating a place for every thing and every thing in it place.
Contemplating the work that will be required to complete such a daunting task can stall the project if you let it. But, once you have decided to do it, just get it done! Do not let anything stop you.
The following suggestions can help you create a simple system that places all items in specific locations, and ensures that you have quick access to the things you need.
Sort Your Stuff into Groups or Categories
Before you start, make a list of the categories you know you will have, for example: garden tools, books, sporting equipment, Christmas decorations, etc.
The most efficient and effective way to approach this project is to sort every thing as you methodically empty the garage.Things that have been missing for a while will appear and should be returned to their proper place – the house, the basement, or the office .
Focus on clearing out the clutter. Get rid of as much as you possibly can. Do not keep what you do not use – and remember to recycle everything that is recyclable.
Small related items should be boxed together and labeled. In fact, all boxes should be labeled so the contents can be found quickly when needed.
Tools and Seasonal Equipment
Garden and household repair tools should be hung on a special rack that can be installed on the wall. This keeps them handy, but not underfoot.
Group winter related items together – snow and ice removal equipment, sleds, skis, snowboards, and boxes of related gear, including some of the bulkier clothing. Warm season items should also be kept together – water skis, snorkeling equipment, surfboards, etc.
Ideally you should build a large cabinet with shelves and drawers to hold seasonal equipment. You can then rotate the equipment in and out of the cabinet as the seasons change. This keeps the necessary equipment accessible and everything else stored away
To help maintain the organization, it is a good idea to install shelving or cabinets around the inside perimeter of the garage. IKEA has a number of excellent, affordable types of shelving that are easy to construct and install.
Shelves are ideal for stacking labeled boxes, placing those that are rarely opened on the higher shelves and the ones that you need from time to time near to the bottom so they are readily accessible.
Create a Small Home Workshop
Even if you do not have a handyman in the family, this can be useful for all kinds of other things such as crafts, and school projects. It can be functional without costing a lot to set it up.
- The workbench can be made from an old door or a large piece of plywood set on two stable saw horses, or concrete blocks.
- Mount a large piece of peg board on the wall above the bench to store tools. Place the pegs to fit the types of tools that will be hung and trace the tools with a marker so everyone can tell which tool goes where.
- Use a tackle box or tool box to store the smaller pieces of equipment and miscellaneous items.
- Old jars are perfect for holding nails, nuts, bolts and screws – or the smaller items that are used for craft projects such as pins.
- If it will be a crafts table, rather than a handyman workbench – cabinets or shelving above the table would be a better choice.
Place Trash and Recycling Bins Close By
If trash bins are nearby, it is much easier to throw things away than set them down somewhere in the garage because the trash bins are too far away.
With a little creative planning and the installation of a few cabinets, shelves and peg boards, plus a couple of days work, you can organize your garage and transform it into an organized, useful storage space. You may even have enough room for your car.