When houses are built they tend to have garages with the intention of storing cars. The reality is though, to most people they are a large storage room. The way you organise your garage storage can be vital when you are looking for something like tools or to ensure you are not causing a fire risk. Here I want to share with you some tips to organise your garage storage on a budget!
Planning the big garage sort out
When you decide you need to sort the garage out the first thing you need to do is take stock of the size of the task. Be honest with yourself. Will you need a skip or trips to the local tip? Is there anything in there you know you could sell or give away?
Thinking about these things whilst cooking tea, watching tv or driving to work will help you when the day comes to sort the garage storage out. You will already have planned how you will dispose of larger items or valuable items that you no longer need.
Before you start the big sort-out make sure you have permanent marker pens, large stickers (or paper and sellotape) and plenty of bin bags. Stop throwing any boxes away that come with deliveries from Amazon etc and look around the house for unused storage boxes, tins etc. You may need these in the big sort-out!
The best buys for garage storage
There shouldn’t be too much that you need to buy for your garage storage as most of it you probably have already and just need to organise more effectively.
A large garage shelving unit is really important here, ideally one that covers the entire height of the garage wall to maximise the space you have available. This storage should be fixed securely to the wall if possible to ensure that you can use the storage effectively whilst keeping it safe.
If you don’t want to use garage shelving or spot a bargain on a standard shelving unit then that would be useful too. The main things to watch for are that it is not going to easily rot if it gets damp or flooded (some garages easily flood depending on the area), and ensuring it is strong enough for heavy tools and boxes.
Another great thing to buy is large hooks for things such as spades and even wheelbarrows to be hooked on. These should be pretty cheap to buy but will make all the difference.
Things you don’t need to buy for garage storage
You shouldn’t need to buy any storage boxes to sort out your garage if you have some already so do check that there aren’t any around the house not being used before you buy any.
Another item you shouldn’t need to buy is special storage solutions for things like nails, screws etc. If you don’t have something like this already you can probably get away with using tubs from chocolates at Christmas and similar containers. Pringles tubes are great for things like this.
It is unlikely that you will need to buy any tools for the job but if there may be a need for anything to assemble shelving or drill the wall for hooks then why not try and borrow these from a neighbour?
Sorting out your garage storage
If you have a skip then it is likely to be just outside of your garage which is perfect, if not then you need to have some bin bags there or your car boot open ready to load with things for the tip. Also, your wheelie bin would be handy to throw smaller bits in.
Start at the front and move the bigger items you are keeping across to one side and the bigger items you are not keeping to your skip, car boot or bin bags. By starting with the biggest items you give yourself more space to work in.
Now start some piles, one for tools, one for garden items, one for household items and one for car/bike products. Initially don’t worry too much about sorting the items out just put them in the correct piles. This should be quite a quick job and add as many piles as you need depending on what you store in your garage.
Once everything is in piles then you can assemble any new storage you have and look at where the big items will go. It is easy then to start working on each pile at a time and sorting the items into storage boxes, labelling them and shelving them as appropriate. At this point, you should have something such as an old box or bin to stand brushes etc in if you can not fix them to the wall and add hooks to the wall for all those larger items.
Your plan should be that everything is around the edges of the garage and everything has a place. If anything is not clear on site as to what it is you need to label it. Do not think you will remember, you won’t!
When your whole garage is organised you can decide what you want to do with the empty space in the middle. Is there space for the kid’s bikes, or a small car? You may even be able to get rid of the garden shed and add those items to the garage, in an organised way of course.
Keeping on top of garage organisation
Every month you should check that everything is straight in the garage and anything you have put back in a hurry should be put in its place. An easy way to do this is perhaps every time you cut the grass. This could mean it is done weekly in the summer but if there isn’t much to put away, if anything, then it isn’t a bad thing is it?
Once a year you should have another big sort-out and check there is nothing you can get rid of either by taking to the tip or selling. This will ensure you don’t have this big task again!
How do you organise your garage? Is it an area full of massive clutter or is it already tidy and organised? Let me know in the comments below if my tips have helped you.