ORGANIZING YOUR GARAGE – STEP 1
Establish a goal for your garage
Before you do anything, “define your space,” says Alkhas. Determine how you can best utilize the garage for your home and family:
- Do you want it just for parking the cars?
- Do you want to use it to store household and/or seasonal items?
- Do you want to create a living space, such as a play area, a mudroom or a workshop?
- Evaluate the size and layout of your garage to determine whether your plan is doable.
ORGANIZING YOUR GARAGE – STEP 2
Sort and purge
You have to be willing to part with stuff in order to make space. Give your garage-cleaning efforts a fair chance by answering the following questions as honestly as you can:
- Do I need this?
- Is this something I can inexpensively replace?
- If I keep this, will I have the space to store it?
Take a good hard look at your items and put each in one of four piles:
- Trash: Check with your waste removal company to arrange a large one-time pickup.
- Donate: Make arrangements with the Salvation Army, Goodwill or other charitable organizations.
- Sell: Consider holding a garage/yard sale for sellable items, or list them on an online site such as eBay or Craig’s List.
- Keep: Sort the keepers according to the activity areas you defined in Step 1.
Go through this process a couple of times if necessary.
ORGANIZING YOUR GARAGE – STEP 3
Use vertical space
It’s easy to create and use vertical storage in the garage!
- Hang large items – such as camping tents and holiday decorations – from the ceiling.
- Create easy-to-access wall storage for items you need more often, such as pet food, bulk groceries and sports equipment.
- Store items in clear bins and totes – you can see what’s inside and they’re easy to stack.
- Color-coordinate your totes for easy identification: red and green lids for Christmas decorations, orange lids for fall decor and white lids for sports items, for example.
ORGANIZING YOUR GARAGE – STEP 4
Make it pretty
You can go for the workshop look with peg boards and cinderblock walls, but you don’t have to. A few ways to add interest to the garage:
- Paint the walls of the various areas different colors.
- Add carpet tiles or snap-together flooring.
- Install extra lighting to keep the space nice and bright.
It’s time to make a plan, roll up your sleeves and get your garage back!
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