Your garage can have a multitude of purposes. Storing your car isn’t the only thing it’s good for. There are so many ways to make your garage work for you and provide you with an organized space to store things you don’t need every day. It only takes a few simple steps to make the most of your garage.
Categorize and Strategize
One of the first things you should do is to take note of the space that you have and the items that you need to store.
First, take everything out and sort it all into categories. Designate an area for things that you are choosing not to keep. Whether it's trashing, donating, or selling, getting rid of as much as possible before attempting to organize will give you a much clearer picture of your needs.
Make a list of what you'd like to be stored and what you’d like accessible. This will largely depend on the season you’ve chosen to organize in.
Bin There, Done That
Once you've determined what goes where you can start buying supplies to keep your hard work intact.
For garages, clear bins are great because you can easily see the contents. You won't have to take down a box to look for pool supplies and realize you grabbed the Christmas lights instead.
Keep It Hidden
If you prefer to keep everything hidden, check out some scannable labels instead of clear bins. They are such a great innovation for an organization that uses an app and QR code labels to sync the contents of totes to your phone. With just a quick snap of the sticker on the bin's exterior, you will be able to see what's inside.
Some brands can even be linked to your voice-activated devices so you can just ask what's in which bin. Most major retail websites sell these relatively inexpensively.
Organizing your most-used items is the next step once you've determined what's going to be kept out and what's going to be hidden. Hanging everything you need in an easily accessible area is made easier with a track system.
Installation and customization are fairly straightforward. You can use them to hang everything from gardening tools to extra shelving to even entire bicycles.
This reduces clutter and makes the task of cleaning the floor much easier by keeping these things off the floor. In addition to wall track systems, ceiling track systems are also available. We'll talk about those more later.
Peg It Up
Pegboards provide additional storage in a remarkably quick manner. Look into installing a large piece of pegboard if you like the idea of a track system but would prefer to have more displayed.
You can buy peg hangers in different styles to fit your needs and the boards themselves are relatively inexpensive. This is one of the best ways to have quick access to your tools. Installing on bare studs is simple and does not require any extra steps since the void needed between the board and the wall already exists.
Creating the gap you will need will require you to hang a few furring strips if your garage is drywalled. If you're doing a full wall of pegboard, you may need some horizontal support, so be sure to install strips in both directions to make a grid pattern.
The pegboards are pretty much ready to go once you screw them on. Trim or molding is not necessary for a full wall, but for smaller areas, this will provide a nice, clean look.
Make A System
For your garage to stay organized, you need to put a system in place to keep everything in a place that works best for you. Place items you use the most in high-traffic areas so you can grab them faster.
Anything that you’d consider to be long-term storage (more than a couple of months) should be stored up high. This way it’s out of sight and mind so you can focus on things that are used more often.
Give Them Some Space
Most garages are filled with stuff owned by everyone in the family. Parents may have a nice collection of tools that need to be kept secure, whereas kids usually collect sports equipment, bikes, and other outdoor activities.
It's easier for you to keep those things in the right place if you designate a place that everyone knows about. Divide the garage into halves or quadrants and assign each area to one person or group of people. I like to tape off a small area to be the kids' "garage" with masking tape.
The ride-ons, cars, and bikes can be parked there so they do not interfere with other traffic. Even though they're not neat, it's better to have them in one spot than scattered around your yard.
Stick It Up
Ceiling racks were mentioned earlier, so let's get into how much they can enhance your space. It is usually possible to put it on another level for storage in garages. If you want to attach some shelves from the ceiling, either use the headroom over the garage door or a corner.
Some systems let you use your existing tote bins instead of shelving. Install the rack and you'll be able to slide your bins in with ease. The benefit of corner shelves is that they can also be used as storage spaces on the underside.
Everything from backpacks to weed whackers can be hung with hooks. You can find systems that come with cranks that adjust the height for you if you have high ceilings in your garage. Although these racks are not as durable as a fixed rack, if you find yourself climbing up and down ladders frequently, this style may be ideal for you.
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Store It Elsewhere
If you find yourself with a lot of things that don't fit in your house, it might be time to consider putting them into storage. Keepsakes and photo albums are great to keep, but being in a temperature-controlled, pest-free place is safer for some items.
The garage is a great place to keep things your family will use. The results of a survey of storage unit users suggested around 17% of people use them to declutter.
If you only use that kayak every few years, then you might want to consider storing it somewhere else instead of keeping it close to home.
Keep It Up
You should only need to clean your garage once a year if your organization system is working then you shouldn’t have to remove many things to get to the one thing you’re looking for.
Sometimes the kids like to play in the tent indoors in the wintertime or sometimes you end up celebrating Christmas in July. The idea of taking them out of the garage shouldn’t stop you from having some fun.
Once your garage is organized, you’ll feel like it’s a space that’s geared towards your needs. It should become more functional and easier to use. Whether it’s a complete overhaul or just replacing a few things here and there, changing your garage to keep it more organized is much simpler than you think.
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