Organize Your Garage in 5 Easy Steps

These days the garage is not only meant for cars. Many use their garage as a dumping site for stuff they don’t need. When organizing your garage, try to get rid of stuff you won’t really use. Maintain regular cleaning habits so as to avoid a pile-up of clutter.
Organize Your

For most Americans, the garage is no longer just a parking spot for the car—it’s also everyone’s dumping room. The garage is where you dump old albums, broken bikes, garden tools, and basically anything that doesn’t fit in your house. It’s pretty understandable why most garages are a mess—a study reveals that most homeowners consider it the most disorganized place in the house. But if your garage is so cluttered there’s no room to walk, it’s probably time for a little spring cleaning.

Garage organization can be daunting, especially if it’s been gathering stuff for years. But it’s one of those things you have to do sooner or later. It will take some work, but it definitely pays off. Here’s an easy step-by-step guide to organizing your garage.

Step 1: Empty your garage. This is the most tedious part of the job, but after that, everything will be relatively easy. Take down everything from your garage and go through each item. Sort them into piles for those you want to keep, donate, and throw away. Stuff you don’t want but are still functional can be donated or sold in a garage sale. Anything broken should go to the throw-away pile; otherwise you’ll be tempted to put off fixing it for another few years.

Step 2. Get rid of the old stuff. Donating is the easiest way to get your old things out of the way, but if you have time, you can try holding a garage sale. Your kids will have fun organizing and you can make a few extra dollars. But if you’re planning to donate or sell, make sure your items are in top condition. Clean them up or make necessary repairs before putting them out.

Step 3: Clean out your garage. Before putting your things back, clean out your garage and make sure all the shelves and fittings are in place. You may find bug colonies in the corners; take them out with a good bug repellent. Tear up any loose planks and replace them; if the wall or floor underneath is damaged, consider getting the entire room redone. Otherwise the damage will spread, and eventually you’ll have to start the project over.

Step 4: Organize your storage. Your garage will have more room since you’ve taken out all the junk. Your next problem is putting what you have left in an organized storage system. The rule of thumb is to keep those you use most often within easy access. Lawn mowers, recycling bins, and children’s toys should be kept on the floor or on the lower part of the shelves. Save space by using wall-mounted shelves and built-in cabinets.

Step 5: Maintain. Make cleaning and sorting a regular routine. Toss out things you don’t need every two weeks, and do a general cleanup and inspection once a month. Try monitoring your clutter level: if it’s starting to look crowded or your parking space is getting narrower, you know you’ve accumulated too much stuff and need to de-clutter again.