According to a recent survey, nearly 50% of Australians say their garage is so cluttered they have trouble parking in it – which is odd given that we’ll park an expensive car in the weather but store unused (and usually unwanted) stuff in the garage.
Does your garage look like a scene out of Hoarders? Is there stuff piled up to the roof with no way of getting to it? Not even enough space to park the car? Don’t worry, and help is at hand. Just follow these four easy steps, and your garage will be a clutter-free zone in no time.
Decluttering your garage is about as hard as the home organization gets. Because let’s face it: Everything you don’t want in the rest of your home ends up in your garage. It’s limbo for all of the misfit items in your home! So where on Earth is all of this stuff supposed to go once you purge?
In this latest instalment of our Declutter Your Home Guide, we’ll demystify how to organize your garage. Try these tips to make your purging practically painless, and turn this classic eyesore into a place you’ll want to show off to your guests. (As for exactly why you’d be showing off your garage to guests, you’re on your own.)
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Getting your garage in order is difficult, especially if you have no time for cleaning, decluttering and organizing. However, making an effort to make more room in your garage can provide you with countless benefits, from increased hygiene levels to more efficient use of space.
Yet, a great number of homeowners quickly give up on organizing their garage areas and continue using them as a general storage room. What they fail to realize is that even a few simple changes, such as choosing top garage storage in Temecula, can make a world of difference when it comes to improving your garage.
Before you know it, you’ll be making plans to convert your garage into a music studio or setting up a small workshop instead of just watching clutter build up. So, take some time for a garage transformation, and you’ll see that it pays off. Read on for our tips and ideas for decluttering your garage.
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Take Everything Out
The first step to decluttering your garage is to find out what’s in it. Pick a section of your garage to start with and pull everything out onto the driveway to sort through. Besides making it easier to work, this garage cleaning tip will also allow you to see what space you have to work with and what types of storage might work best when it’s time to organize the items you’re keeping.
Decide on Your ‘Keep’ Criteria
Once you’ve pulled everything out, it’s time to set some ground rules for deciding what to keep. This garage cleaning tip will speed up the process by preventing you from agonizing over each item. When deciding what to keep and what to throw away, ask yourself: “Is this item in the garage for a reason, or because I didn’t know what to do with it?” If it’s the latter, either find a use for it or get rid of it.
- Things to Keep During a Garage Cleanout
- Items you’ve used more than once in the past year.
- Things in working condition. Ditch all those gizmos you’ve been “meaning to fix.”
- Tools you can’t easily rent or borrow.
- Professional Organizer, Beth Levin of Closet Queen
It’s important to keep items that the homeowner needs and wants while also zoning the garage. Some people are gardeners and need to have a gardening station with pots, soil, and other paraphernalia. Others are car aficionados, athletes who play lots of sports, handymen who need a station for tools. If, on the other hand, we find four items that all do the same thing, I would encourage the homeowner to donate two or three of them to save space.
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Decide What to Do With the Garage Clutter
Whatever doesn’t make your “keep” list is, by default, clutter. Don’t let it hang around your garage any longer.
With your “keep” items set aside, start going through the rest of the stuff you pulled out of the garage. Identify items you’d like to sell or donate first. Have plastic bins, cardboard boxes or bags on hand so that you can pack up donation items as you work and stash them somewhere out of the way.
Bag up or box up junk that doesn’t make the “keep,” “sell” or “donate” piles. If you’ve rented a dumpster for your weekend cleanout, toss the garbage bags into the container as you go.
How To Organize And Declutter Your Garage
Before organizing your garage, it needs to be decluttered. Your garage has probably become home to different odds and ends over the years. Cleaning out and sorting these items is a big task, and it doesn’t help much if things don’t stay tidy for long. Start with these three tips.
Clean it out.
Set aside a day or weekend to get your garage properly decluttered. Go through absolutely everything you have in your garage and sort your stuff into three piles: keep, donate/sell, and throw out. Organize your “keep” pile into categories like camping gear, sports equipment, etc.
Plan out your space.
Before you start putting anything back, plan for how to store your items. Take measurements of your garage and draft a floor plan. Plan to store items you don’t use very often like seasonal decorations in the hard-to-reach places and save space at the front for frequently used items.
Invest in storage helps.
The best way to keep your garage organized for good is to keep things off the floor. Install shelves, hooks, and overhead storage to keep your stuff safe and neat.
Garage Storage Ideas
Now that things are clean, you’re ready for some garage storage ideas. Finding a way to keep everything in your garage organized and accessible can be challenging. Read below for some innovative ideas to get as much function out of your space as possible.
Don’t waste precious garage storage space by not utilizing the ceiling. It’s the perfect place to store long flat items like ladders. You can also add hanging shelves to store camping gear or other seasonal items. This is a great way to keep items off the floor and out of the way. When hanging shelves from the ceiling, be sure the garage door has enough room to function properly, and your cars will still fit inside the space.
Shelves instead of cabinets.
Use the wire or wooden shelves instead of cabinets. Declutter your garage with open shelves, and you’ll be able to quickly see all the items you have stored and easily access them. Additionally, cabinets need clearance space for the doors to swing open, which seriously limits the amount of usable space in your garage. You’ll be more motivated to keep everything neat if you don’t have cabinet doors to hide your mess, so open shelving is a great long-term garage organization solution.
Use a pegboard.
Pegboards are perfect for hanging and organizing frequently used items in your garage. Attach hooks and pegs to a thick pegboard to create a display of things like hand tools, hardware, and gardening tools. A pegboard storage system is both sturdy and easy to rearrange. You can use as many pegboards as you want to get the most function out of the wall space in your garage, especially if you don’t have a lot of room for shelves.
A Slatwall system is a series of grooved panels that attach to the wall. You can attach different kinds of baskets, hooks, brackets, and shelves to the grooves, making this system super versatile. Slatwall is usually more affordable and adaptable than cabinetry and takes up less space.
Group similar items together.
Divide your shelves into sections and assign each section to a group of items like pet supplies, maintenance tools, etc. Keeping all your items grouped makes it easier to find things and promotes long-term organization.
Rent Out Storage Space In Your Garage
After you declutter your garage don’t let your unused garage stay empty! If you don’t need your garage for storage, you can make money every month by renting it out to someone in your neighbourhood looking for extra storage. Sign up to host with Neighbor and list your empty garage, or any other space, for free. Renters can choose to rent your place, meaning you get extra money in your bank account every month.
Garage Storage Ideas for Specific Items
Almost anything can be stored in your garage if you do it correctly. Some things require climate control and other kinds of protection, so you might want to check your garage and make sure it’s suitable to keep your items safe from humidity and temperature before storing anything sensitive. Below is a list of items and garage storage ideas to keep them safely tucked away.
Storing bikes in the garage.
Bikes can take up a lot of floor space and get easily blocked by other items. The best way to store your bikes is to hang them. This will keep the bikes accessible, protected, and out of the way, leaving more floor space for your car. Check out this tutorial from This Old House on how to hang bikes in your garage.
Sports equipment storage.
The most important thing to do when storing sports equipment is to sort your gear by sport rather than storing it in a big group. This will save you time and cut down on clutter in your garage. Once your gear is sorted, use shelves to hold big items like helmets and skates, and use wire or plastic baskets to hold small equipment. Use mesh laundry bags to stash your sports balls to keep them corralled and ready for transport.
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Keeping hand tools organized in the garage.
Finding the right tools for a job can be impossible if your tools are all jumbled together in a box or drawer. Hanging tools on the wall are the best way to keep them organized and easy to find. Use the pegboard method or Slatwall system mentioned earlier to create the perfect tool display. You can also mount tie/belt racks to hang wrenches and other small tools.
When storing your kayak, be sure to keep it away from sunlight and heat. You can buy a suspension system or create your own using wide webbing straps to suspend your kayak from the ceiling. Be sure to clean your kayak before storing, and keep the hull (bottom of the kayak) protected. The hull should always face the ceiling when you hang your kayak in the garage.
Garage storage for golf clubs.
Make sure your clubs are clean and dry before storing them. If you want to store golf clubs in your garage long-term, be sure your garage is climate-controlled. Your clubs are susceptible to humidity and temperature, so a cold winter in an unheated garage could cause some damage. If your garage is climate-controlled, you’ll want to keep your clubs covered and put away in a corner where they won’t get knocked around.
Storing garden tools in the garage.
An effective organization system will keep your lawn tools in good shape and ready to go when you are. To keep your tools in the best condition possible, a vertical storage system is best. Hang rakes, weed whackers, shovels, hoses, and other tools from the wall with hooks or racks. You can add a gardening workspace or potting bench to your garage by repurposing an old desk. Attach baskets and hooks to your workspace to hold small gardening tools and gloves.
Declutter your camping gear storage.
Camping is a fun way to enjoy the great outdoors, but it can be difficult to pack for a trip if your gear is scattered all over shelves in your garage. A great way to keep your camping gear together and ready for your next adventure is to store it in totes. Fill small totes with items and label them, and then arrange the small totes inside bigger totes with wheels. When the time comes to a head out, you can roll your totes into the truck and be on your way. Be sure to clean all your gear thoroughly after each trip to keep it in good shape and save you from having to replace it.
Be sure to find a garage shelving solutions and work with GarageSmart Garage Storage Solutions when packing and storing your belongings. From a simple, one-room project to a cross-country move, a professional organizer like GarageSmart can help to make your life easier.
How can I make more space in my garage?
There always seems to be a lack of space in residential garages, especially in homes with big families. No matter how hard you try, boxes keep piling up, leaving no free space.
So, is there a way to change this? Of course, there is! The key lies in being persistent in organizing your garage. There are more than a few practical steps you can follow to declutter your garage space and make this area more open. Here’s what you should do:
Get rid of clutter
Clutter is one of the biggest problems for homeowners. If you let clutter take over, your garage will seem smaller than it is. So, you must remove any items you don’t need or those in poor condition that cannot be repaired.
After decluttering your garage, you should clean it properly. Make sure to tackle every corner and remove dust and dirt even from those areas that cannot be easily reached. Cleaning your garage will open up space and make this area feel airier.
A simple way to prevent clutter from building up again is to create dedicated zones within your garage. For instance, if you need a place to store your sports equipment, keep it separate from the one for your landscaping tools.
Although using mirrors in your garage isn’t that common, it can help you make your space seem bigger. Implementing mirrors is one of the best tricks for creating an illusion of spaciousness in small and crowded rooms.
Going into someone’s home to help them declutter and get organised is a very personal service. It’s essential that you have Garage Smart Garage Storage Solutions the right team for this task.
Use space-saving storage
Finally, installing appropriate storage solutions is essential if you want to make more room in your garage. With the right storage units, you can free up a lot of floor space while taking full advantage of the walls and ceilings, especially if you go with overhead racks.
Once the garage is cleaned out, give it a good sweep and clean up. Now’s the fun part. Start putting things back in the garage but in a very specific way: Keep like items together and create zones.
First up, arrange similar items together: Sports equipment, outdoor/backyard stuff, tools, car stuff and more depending on what you may have.
Then, create zones for these like items: An area for the tools, a spot for the kids’ sporting equipment, a wall for the gardening tools – you get the idea. Just do your best at keeping things together and against the walls.