There’s a good chance you know people who have so much stuff piled up and stored in their garage that they can’t even fit their vehicles inside. Or maybe, you are that person? Garages tend to be a drop zone for items people don’t have space for inside of their homes – suitcases, sports equipment, old books, etc. If you missed National Clean Out Your Garage Day (the Saturday after Labor Day), you can still clean out your garage before winter hits. Set aside one weekend and enlist the help of family members - your garage will be clutter-free in no time.
The first step is to take everything out of your garage. While this may seem like a tedious task, seeing your garage as an empty canvas will give you the motivation to keep things organized and functional in the future.
As you are clearing items out of the garage, set up three zones: one for items you want to keep, one for items to be donated, and one for items that can be thrown away. You’ll realize as you go through the process that items you really want to keep for sentimental reasons will slowly start shifting to the donate or garbage pile. This is natural so don’t feel stressed that items you put in a particular pile have to stay there.
Within your “keep” pile, group like items together so they can be organized in the same space for easy access. For example, a section for shoes/clothes makes it easier for anyone in the family to find a coat, hat, or pair of boots they are looking for if all these items are organized together. And remember, if you are cleaning the clutter in your garage on a cold weekend, use an electric heater to stay warm – especially if the kids are helping.
Once it’s time to organize items in the garage, try to keep the floors clear if possible. Doing so will free up space for your vehicle. Purchase shelving units, cabinets, stackable bins, hooks, and racks to organize your items. Also save smaller food jars as they can hold small, miscellaneous items like screws, ribbon, and thread.
A few tips:
- Open shelves are better than closed cabinets because you can visually identify what you need without causing more clutter
- Organize items vertically on a pegboard in order to maximize storage space