For some reason, the garage seems to collect clutter and junk. In fact, studies show that 75% of garages are so full of stuff that a car won’t fit. Unfortunately, reclaiming a cluttered garage can make people feel overwhelmed. But with these five steps and some garage organization planning, you can transform even the most cluttered garage into a functional space where everything has its place.
Step 1: Get Ready
Some preparation before you actually dive in can make your garage organization plans run more smoothly.
- Set aside enough time to tackle your garage. A full day is a good start, but you might need a full weekend or two.
- More hands make for light work, so recruit helpers. Make decluttering a family project or invite some friends over to help.
- Go through everything, even boxes that haven’t been opened since you moved in.
Step 2: Select Categories
Start off by categorizing the items that belong in your garage. Typical categories include:
- Sports and recreational equipment
- Garden/lawn care and tools
- Camping gear
- Seasonal decor
- Cleaning supplies
Step 3: Group Your Garage Contents
Now it’s time to go through your possessions. Designate piles for each category and put each item in the right pile. Labeled cardboard boxes can help keep your groups together. Don’t buy containers or bins yet. That’s part of Step 5.
As you organize, you will find random items that don’t fit into a category. Put them in the most similar category or in a visible place in their own pile.
Step 4: Sort Each Category
This step can be done at the same time as Step 3, or as a separate step. Sort every single item as one you will: 1) keep, 2) donate/sell, 3) trash/recycle, or 4) relocate.
Be selective about what you keep. Some things that should get tossed include outgrown toys, items broken beyond repair, expired household chemicals, and any item you haven’t used in the last two years. Items that are better stored somewhere other than the garage include paint, propane, paper goods, pet food, and luggage.
Step 5: Make a Garage Organization Plan
Now that you know exactly what you’re dealing with, it’s time to solidify your garage organizing plans for where each category of items will go. It can be helpful to create “zones” for like items or ones that you use together, such as gardening tools and lawn care. Put seasonal or rarely-used items in the more hard-to-reach spots.
You can build your own DIY organization system, or choose from one of the many options out there. All organization systems make use of three main areas.
This is the default storage location. And if you have a big enough garage, then it might be sufficient. Place bulky items like lawnmowers in corners, and items that you use more frequently, like bikes, near the front. Shelves that sit on the floor also take up floor space. For many people, the floor space in their garage is limited and valuable real estate.
To free up floor space, you can look to the walls for storage and organization. From screwing in hooks or shelves to entire customizable wall systems, this is a popular garage storage solution.
While wall organization frees up floor space, it still takes up usable side-to-side or front-to-back space in your garage. Nothing brings your garage organization project to a halt like getting all your wall shelves, bins, and items hung up only to realize that your car doesn’t quite fit because of them.
Often the area above your head is simply dead space in a garage. Overhead storage puts this extra space to good use and keeps your walls and floor free. Common solutions are to use hooks or wire racks for storage. Unfortunately, what you gain in space usage you can lose in convenience.
Smart Garage Overhead Organization
Carrying out a garage organization plan is hard enough. Garage Smart makes it easier by taking the hassle out of overhead storage with our motorized overhead garage storage. Our versatile, easy to use, and 100% safe storage solutions let you raise and lower overhead storage with the touch of your smartphone screen.
You can enjoy an organized garage, convenience, and peace of mind with Garage Smart’s full range of products.