Is it time to show some love for your garage? You may be looking at the unused space in your home and wishing it could be beautiful, easy-to-navigate or even an extra room in which you could spend time. But if those piles of stuff are just too much to see through for you to create a vision for yourself, you might be putting off that great reorganization project.
But by following a few steps, you can create a functional and attractive garage. You will have to engage in some initial grunt work, however, so you know exactly what you no longer need that’s hidden in that room. By using some garage accessories and implementing design concepts, your new space will be easy to keep organized for years to come.
1. Take Everything Out Before You Reorganize
Garage organization is a bit of a project if you want to do it right. Especially if you have stuff that’s accumulated over the years — your children’s toys they’ve outgrown, old appliances that you might want to fix, old paint and renovation materials — the space seems daunting to rearrange.
Step one takes a bit of decision-making and monitoring of the weather forecast. When it’s due to be a dry day, and you’re ready to put in the effort to sort through what’s in your garage, pull out everything and put it on the front lawn or in the backyard. That way you can see your garage as it once was: a blank canvas. You can also take a good hard look at what’s been lurking in the space for all those years.
2. Purge and Categorize Items
Once you are ready to get rid of things, you’ll find it’s easier than you thought. You need a vacuum cleaner, after all, but you don’t need three — so it’s not that hard to put the older ones in a “donate” pile if they still work. Take an overall look at your garage items and either ditch or plan to give away anything that you no longer use.
Once you have purged your pile, have a look at what’s left. Chances are, everything will fall into one of a few major categories. Think of when you want to have access to your stuff before sorting. For example, you may want to divide up by season, by frequency of use or size. Sort those items into piles so you can start to plan the optimal layout of your garage space.
3. Use Wall Space and Ceiling Space for Garage Organization
You may be parking outside because there is simply no space left in your garage. If that works for you, great — your garage doesn’t have to be just a location for storage. You can convert it to a hobby room or man cave. If you are fortunate to have ample square footage, you can even create separate zones for your car and your packed-away items.
But if you want to protect your car during those Pittsburgh winters by keeping it covered, make sure there’s room in the garage. Organize your storage by using your wall and ceiling space so there’s lots of room left for your vehicle. Functional garage organization includes metal wall bars to hang large tools, shelving secured to the ceiling and hooks for smaller items. Together, they help keep as much stuff as possible off of the floor.
4. Decide the Purpose of Your Garage
You might intend to use your garage for storage, but inspiration is bound to hit once you see the empty space. With the right organizational tools, you can create a section to work on crafts or hobbies or make a design studio. The right layout can give you access to your stuff when you need it while also creating a location where you can find respite from the rest of the house.
5. Label Everything!
Do you have a few “mystery boxes” in your garage? Perhaps it’s not your first attempt at reorganization. But in your rush to move things around the last time, you simply placed goodness-knows-what into opaque plastic bins and stacked them in a corner. It probably helped, temporarily, but now it might be a puzzle to figure out what actually lurks inside.
By labeling every bin, you know where all items are located. You don’t have to unpack everything when you are looking for something specific. Looking through unlabeled storage bins is often a laborious process of bringing down and opening each and every box until you find what you need. With labels, you don’t have to waste time going through bins stacked on top of one another.
Learn Your Options for Garage Reorganization
Before you embark on your garage organization project, it may help to know what accessories can help you create a functional space. Knowing the dimensions of your garage is a starting point. You can then decide what shelving, cabinetry or custom-made garage add-ons are most appropriate.
Best of all, you don’t have to do it by yourself. If you want to get your garage organized, contact us for help or inspiration!