Many Americans own a garage but can’t use it to its full potential. Mostly because it’s overcrowded with supplies, tools, and other items that you don’t have space for in the house. Getting the garage organized can be overwhelming. A fool-proof method would include creating three categories for your items: keep, throw, donate/sell. Clearly mark out these sections for the opportunity to move through the task a lot quicker.
A Few Quick Tips
- Set aside the whole day/weekend, so you aren’t tempted to drop the job altogether.
- Tempt friends and family with free food/drinks if they help you work through the organization of your garage.
- Leave no box unturned. Even if you think you know the contents, open it up and sort through the box to be safe.
Decide What is Trash
There can be a lot of wavering between whether something should be kept, thrown, or donated. Before you get started, outline what qualifies each category. Ideally, if something is broken, empty, or unusable, you toss it. Items that can be donated haven’t been used in the past six months or year and are still in working condition.
Divide the Space
Whether you are tackling the project solo or managed to rope in some help, separate into different areas to help you. Trying to do too much will make you lose focus. Don’t give yourself the space to make an excuse not to get the job complete.
All items you are keeping should be sorted into categories. The categories can be broad, but they should be definitive. Paint with paint, tools with tools, gardening supplies with gardening supplies, etc. It will help you when it’s time to put them back in the garage.
Whether you are throwing items or donating them, don’t hesitate to remove them from your home. Placing them back in your garage “for the time being” will only tempt you to forget about them. If you have the workforce, you can have someone’s job include running items to the landfill or local charity during the cleanout.
There are a few things you might want to store somewhere besides the garage.
- Paint is synonymous with the garage. But, if you keep it around for touch-ups or future use, the exposure to weather changes will ruin the consistency.
- All propane tanks should be stored outside if your garage is attached to your house — a small spark can result in ignition. A shed without electricity would work well for propane storage.
- Keep paper products somewhere in the house. Paper plates, cups, napkins, and towels will attract some unwanted guests like cockroaches. They can also deteriorate in the fluctuating temperatures.
- Pet food should also be moved indoors. You can attract much larger pests like possums or raccoons who enjoy a bit of dog and cat food. If there are no other options, make sure it’s inside a sealed container.
After everything is sorted, you need to start putting things back in the garage that you decided to keep. There are a few ways you can organize the garage that we’ll talk about in a second, but let’s quickly take a look at some necessities.
Buy a few in each size. Ensure they have lids and are stackable. That will help keep you organized and won’t disintegrate over time.
Another robust packing material is glass. Keep old food jars and wash them clean. Use them to store wires, nails, and other small items.
Any items that need to be stored in the garage safely should remain in a lockable cabinet. It will keep your kids or pets from accidentally getting into something they shouldn’t.
Even if the containers are clear, use a label maker. It will help you identify what you need if they are stored on a high shelf or include more than one object.
How To Set-Up Your Garage
- Utilize your wall space as much as possible. Hoses and tools can hang from the wall and save you space. Bikes can also be mounted to give you more room to park your car.
- Arrange your drawers with like items together. Get out that label maker and put the contents on the front. It will make it easier when you need to grab and go.
- Make good use of your shelving space. Items that you don’t need to access regularly should be stored high. Also, lighter weight tools and equipment should go on top shelves, while heavier things need to be placed on the bottom.
- Use a pegboard for tools that you need often. It’s another hanging method that is proven to help with convenience. Most hardware stores should sell them. You can adjust the pegs to accommodate whatever tools need to live here.
Rent a Self-Storage Unit
There are about 30% of Americans who can store their cars in the garage. The average car costs around five figures, making it a substantial investment. While you are cleaning out your garage, you can store larger items in a self-storage unit to make space for your vehicle. Self-storage units are flexible. There are multiple sizes available, so you are getting the most out the unit. Having a temperature controlled storage unit in Middle Tennessee is helpful when we experience extreme highs and lows. Create more space at home with Stuff It Inn Storage.