No matter how much you try to avoid collecting stuff, you are bound to end up with some odds and ends that need storing. For most people, those items end up in the garage. Sadly, very often they end up tossed in willy-nilly in such a way that, when you get ready to retrieve an item, you either have no idea where it is, or you know where it is, but you can’t get to it.
In this article, we discuss using your garage for storage and provide smart tips to help you do it in an orderly manner. Read on to learn more about garage storage ideas.
What Should You Store In The Garage & How?
It is not unusual to have so much stuff that you can’t find anything. Keeping up with constant Decluttering can be a real chore. That’s why we are so likely to just fill the garage to the rafters with miscellaneous odds and ends. The bigger the garage, the bigger the collection!
It is often so bad that it becomes impossible to park your car in the garage. In fact, across the USA, only about a quarter of garage owners use their garage to protect their cars.
Instead, their garages have become on-site storage units filled with stacked boxes and storage containers and/or piles of miscellaneous items that no longer work, fit or belong.
What Does Belong In The Garage?
Ideally, your garage should be the place where you park your car, and you should also have some space available for home repair, yard and garden tools, such as:
You may want to park your car and your motorcycle, along with necessary vehicle related items, such as spare or off-season tires. Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to keep your cargo box in a space where it’s easy to access and secure onto the roof of your vehicle?
Likewise, you may need to store some large item temporarily or seasonally in your garage while still leaving space to park the car. For example, if you have fireplace, you’ll need a covered space to store wood in the winter. If you are renovating a bedroom, you’ll need to store mattresses and bedroom furniture temporarily. You can even store a TV in your garage if you follow our advice.
What Can You Do?
One of the main problems and advantages of using a garage for storage is that it is a blank slate. A garage is built to store a car, so it is typically empty space. When you go to store things in it, it’s easy for this empty space to become disorganized very quickly.
Before you know it, you have a garage full of storage containers and boxes stacked up against the walls and encroaching into the center of the space.
You may just have a small path to make your way through – or maybe not. This is unsightly and can create a fire hazard, as well as providing habitat for unwanted wildlife.
Don’t Make These 11 Mistakes With Garage Organization
Organize Your Garage For Optimum Storage Possibilities
Luckily, the open space of a garage also provides you with an excellent opportunity to create exactly the storage space you need. Here’s how!
- Set aside a block of time to work. Check your weather forecast to be sure of getting several clear days in a row.
- Begin by taking everything out of your garage. Sort as you go, creating keep, sell, donate and toss piles. It’s important to get the garage empty because it will really make your storage possibilities clear.
- Dispose of items you don’t want to keep promptly. Don’t let them hang around and end up back in your garage. Remember to arrange with your trash pickup service to collect your throw-away items, or you may need to book a junk removal service.
- Clean your garage thoroughly and think about your storage options. The best idea is to make the most of your wall space by installing shelves and cabinets. This way you avoid having a hodge-podge of storage containers stacked around. You may still wish to use totes and boxes, but if you have shelves or cabinets, you can store them in a way that makes them easy to access.
- Analyze your wall and ceiling space. You can do wrap around shelving and also add suspended ceiling shelves. You may also want to install a wall of hooks for various and sundry tools, extension cords and the like. There are also excellent hook and pulley options for suspending bikes, cargo boxes and other large items in the rafters of your garage.
- Set your budget and your method. You may want to purchase free standing shelving and cabinets or do-it-yourself by building in shelves. Repurposing is always a good idea, and you may be able to find some used cabinetry that will fit your garage perfectly and help you organize your space.
- Prepare the space. While your garage is empty, take care of any repairs that may be needed. Clean thoroughly, and consider garage improvements such as insulation, interior paint and finished floor. All of these will help make your garage more usable.
- Install your storage units and get your garage in order!
Store Your Stuff With Room To Spare!
The bottom line is, no matter what you need to store in your garage, from day-to-day necessities (potatoes?) to large, unusual and sensitive items (think grand piano) you’ll need to have a garage that is neat, clean, tidy, organized and secure.
Follow the tips presented here to get your garage in order so that you can use it for storage and to park your car.