When you need to get something out of your way, where do you put it? Often, when a homeowner has a piece of furniture that needs to be repaired, an appliance that isn’t needed but may be useful in the future, or a decorative item that is out of season, the garage is the place where it ends up. Because it’s a large, spacious area, the garage is a convenient drop spot for inconvenient household items, but the practice of moving things into the garage to get them out of the way can quickly lead to a messy, disorganized garage. If your garage clutter has gotten out of control, these tips can help you get it tidy and organized again.
Sort Items into Groups
The problem with cleaning a garage is that often by the time you decide that it needs to be cleaned, there’s so much clutter that you end up feeling overwhelmed. This can make it difficult to get started. What you need is a plan.
One helpful way to approach a cluttered garage is to start by simply sorting the items into groups. Tools in one group, sporting equipment in another, old baby clothes here, holiday decorations there. Once you’ve divided up the different kinds of things that you’re storing in your garage, you will have a better sense of what you have and what kind of storage you need. You may also find things that you don’t want to keep anymore. Sort those things into piles to sell, donate, or throw away, and get rid of them as soon as possible. That will give you more room to work with as you’re putting things away.
Get Creative With Your Organization
Once you know what you have, it’s time to start figuring out how to organize it. Look around your garage. Where can you put things? What might you need to do to create a more organized space?
If you find that you have a lot of small hand tools, you may want to install pegboard that allows you to hang the tools on the wall. Have a lot of sports equipment? Hanging baskets on the wall will give you a great place to store balls, gloves, and other gear. You may also want to consider installing shelves, overhead storage racks, or cabinets. Don’t be afraid to look for creative ways to use your space. For example, you can hang bikes from the ceiling or create a storage rack for long-handled garden tools using PVC pipe.
Store Your Items Securely
If you need to store items in boxes, keep cardboard boxes to a minimum. Cardboard weakens with time, it’s vulnerable to moisture, and is easy for bugs to penetrate. Instead, invest in hard plastic storage totes with lids. They hold up better over time and are less likely to become damaged or infested.
On top of that, plastic totes stack easily, which allows you to stack boxes of rarely-used items higher, rather than spreading them out and taking up too much floor space. Don’t forget to label the totes so that you know what’s in them.
As you sort, organize and store things in your garage, don’t forget to leave some space for new items. That way, you can easily add things to your garage without allowing it to become cluttered again. For more great garage organization ideas, schedule your free design consultation.