The garage is often the most hated room in the home. It’s cold, dark and dirty most of the time, not to mention cluttered with everything from boxes of keepsakes to holiday decorations to spare car parts. Fortunately, organizing your garage (and keeping it neat) is easier than you think. Follow these steps to revamp your garage with just a weekend or two of your time.
Clear Out the Stuff You Don’t Need
If you’re a pack rat, it can be difficult to part with old belongings, especially if they have sentimental value. However, the trick to an organized garage is to only keep what you really need. Take pictures of memorabilia to remember them by and then sell, toss or donate them to make room for items you actually use on a regular basis.
If you have anything unusable, outdated or broken, donate or throw away these items without delay. Be sure to properly recycle any old electronics you no longer use. You’ll be amazed at the freedom you feel after letting go of this clutter.
Separate Items into Categories
- Which items do you use most often? Keep these items nearest to the door on an eye-level shelf you can easily reach.
- Which items do you only use at certain times of the year? Store winter items together – including skis, snowboards, sleds, snow shovels, deicers and holiday decorations – and store summer items together – including camping gear, coolers and gardening supplies. As the seasons change, shift off-season items to a higher shelf and bring in-season items down.
- Which small items do you often use together? Place similar items in storage bins. Be sure to label these bins so you can easily find what you’re looking for later on.
Visualize Your Plan
Now that you can picture the number and type of items you need room for in the garage, it’s time to solidify your game plan. Decide what types of custom garage organization solutions you want to pursue. Your primary options include garage cabinets, shelving, overhead racks and slatwall. Each solution provides different benefits and allows you to store different types of items. This is a good time to work with a designer if you’re not sure what will work best.
Apply the Finishing Touch
With so much effort going into organizing your garage, you may find you actually want to spend more time here working on the car, repotting plants, making crafts or pursuing other hobbies. You’ll enjoy these pursuits more if you install an epoxy floor coating. This finishing touch makes your garage look better, provides a slip-resistant surface, and prevents the floor from pitting and staining.