Posted in: Homeowner tips

Organize your garage in seven easy steps

Garage organization tips

Key insights:

  • Sort and store your belongings by type. Sports equipment and lawn supplies should each have designated spaces in the garage.
  • Invest in a shelving system to safeguard your items up and off the garage floor.
  • For maximum organization, create consistent labels for all your storage bins.

Be sure to follow these garage organization strategies to make the most of your space plus save time, sanity and money by keeping the clutter away.

1. Make a plan and set realistic cleanup goals

Prior to organizing your garage, make a list of what you’d like to achieve throughout the cleaning process. With these benchmarks in mind, you can stick to a clear plan so you don’t get sidetracked as you clear the clutter.

Here are some questions to ask yourself when planning a garage cleanup:

  • What do I want to accomplish most by the end of my cleaning?
  • Will I be able to park the car in the garage?
  • Do I want to create a much-desired garage workshop, office, home gym, or other designated workspace?
  • Will I need to discard a lot of items that might require a bagster or dumpster?
  • How will I safely recycle or dispose of items like batteries, old gas or electronics?
  • What will I need to purchase or rent in order to accomplish my goals?

2. Invest in organization supplies

Plastic storage containers can be expensive, but they’re also a good way to deter critters and protect against water damage. Determine in advance what you’ll want fully protected in your garage storage, then check the big box stores and ads for deals.

Investing in air-tight storage containers will aid in arranging your belongings, and they’ll also help prevent damage over the months and years.

You may also consider adding:

  • Shelves
  • Hooks
  • Racks
  • Peg boards
  • Bike hangers or mounts
  • Cabinets

Some homeowners may even consider adding drywall to one area of an unfinished garage in order to accommodate a wall storage system.

3. Sort your belongings

To facilitate a more efficient organization process, make piles or designate areas for different types of garage items, including:

  • Sports equipment
  • Yard and gardening tools
  • Seasonal décor
  • Cleaning supplies
  • Tools
  • Deep freezer or fridge
  • Items to be donated, recycled or discarded

If you find items that haven’t been touched in years, it’s time to part ways. Box up unused things and label them for donation, sale or disposal. If you start to feel indecisive, step aside and let the piles sit overnight. Come back fresh in the morning to make the final call.

4. Split up the space

Designate areas in the garage according to their purpose and sort and store items accordingly. Doing so will help create a functional and efficient space.

For example, use the space closest to the house for items that you access often, including recycling bins. Stow the sports equipment in the areas closest to the outside or door of the garage, as these items will likely travel in and out frequently. You may also create a mini workspace for the projects you tackle inside the garage, keeping your most-used tools handy and grouping similar tools together.

Pro tip: Locate work stations, chargers, and power tools near electrical outlets so you won’t need to move things elsewhere when you need to use them.

5. Go vertical

Simply put, piles and stacks on the floor are a non-starter. Store items off the floor of your garage to protect and maintain them, especially during temperature fluctuations. Shelves or other wall systems increase the stability of your stored belongings while enhancing the garage’s visual appeal and maximizing space.

When organizing your things on shelves, keep accessibility in mind. Start by placing your most-used items within arm’s reach, then stow away seasonal or rarely-used items in higher storage.

6. Label everything

Position clean, easy-to-read labels on all storage bins. You can create labels with masking tape and a marker, or purchase special stickers or a label maker. Whatever method you choose, ensure that you always have supplies on-hand to create labels. If the contents of a bin change, you can stay organized by immediately updating the label on the box.

In addition, label each container consistently, with a tag placed on the top and all sides of the box or bin. This will help you locate items in your garage with ease.

7. Take pictures

Although they won’t make the scrapbook, photos that serve as evidence of your belongings may come in handy if you have to file a homeowners insurance claim for lost or damaged goods. If you spend the time organizing your garage, you may as well catalog your items along the way.

It’s garage go time

With these simple tips and some sweat equity, you’ll be well on your way to an organized garage. Get started on your decluttering and cleanup process now for more space and better efficiency.

If you’re cleaning in preparation for a home sale, reach out to Edina Realty or one of our agents. We’re here to help you move forward.

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