Summer is the perfect time to get your garage organized. Most of us use our garages as more than just covered parking. Our garages also function as workshops for hobbies or mechanical repairs, gardening centers, mudrooms, and overflow storage. Over time, it can become cluttered and disorganized. Now that the weather has warmed up, it’s the perfect time to give your garage a top-to-bottom cleaning and organizational overhaul.
Depending on how out of control your garage has become, this may be a weekend project. Get the whole family involved to get the job done faster. The following tips will help you transform your garage from a cluttered mess into a functional, organized space.
- Pull everything out of your garage. Get rid of everything you no longer need, either by giving it away to a good home or trashing it if it’s no longer usable. Then sort what you’re keeping into logical groupings and create a zone system.
- Keep the floor clear. Rather than piling up items on your garage floor, create designated homes for everything off of the ground on shelves, hooks, racks, or inside cabinets. This will keep your items organized and protect them from potential water damage. It will also give you more room to maneuver. Opt for cabinets that are wall-mounted or with legs to make it easier to keep the garage floor clean.
- Hooks and brackets will allow you to hang a variety of large, bulky items, including lawn tools, lawn chairs, bikes, and other sports equipment off the floor and out of the way. Baskets and bins keep small items contained and organized. Magnetic strips are perfect for keeping small tools easily accessible.
- Store seasonal items together by season. For summer gear, use baskets, shelves, and hooks for storing sand buckets, flip flops, balls, pool toys, and collapsible lawn chairs. For winter gear, use hooks for storing sleds and snow shovels and baskets and bins for storing snow boots and ice scrapers.
- Organize items so that hazardous items, like chemicals and sharp tools, are on higher shelves, in a locked cabinet if possible, out of the reach of children. Children’s items, like sports equipment or toys, can go on the lower shelves.
- Create a mudroom by the entrance to the house. Include a shoe storage rack and rug or scraper, along with a bench where you can sit down to remove your shoes before entering the house. Hooks for coats and jackets and baskets for hats and gloves are also a great addition.
- Make it easier to help the environment by establishing a recycling center. This should include a bin for collecting recyclable materials and a handy hook for storing reusable grocery bags. Locate it so that it’s easily accessible from the entrance to the house.
- Once everything has been organized and stored away, label each area so that everyone in the family knows where to find what they need and where items should be returned after use.