Garages are a blessing and a curse. A blessing because they provide additional space and storage options for your home, and a curse because they’re ‘inside’ yet are exposed to the elements and because they can so quickly turn into dumping grounds.
Especially this time of the year (after the holidays), I like to get in and do some organizing. Things will often get “dumped” in the Garage to hide, store, etc., and I find things get a little out of control this time of the year. I like to get a handle on the mess before the Spring when we use the Garage more.
So what is the answer? How can you make the best use of your Garage, maximize its storage capacity and keep it functional? Here are a few ideas to get you started.
When was the last time you tried to organize your Garage? You just come in, pick what you want, and go away. It must be challenging going through the stuff, trying to find a small piece in all that mess. But, you can solve all the lot like a genius. All you should learn is how to organize a garage on a tight budget. The only significant investment you will be making is your time.
Are you tired of rummaging through your Garage trying to find a spanner? Let this post help you fix up your Garage and maximize usable space. It will give you ideas and tips to organize your Garage without spending so much. You are only a step away from a neat garage.
Step-by-Step How to Organize A Garage On A Tight Budget
Step 1: Take Inventory of the Items inside Your Garage
If you’ve been using your Garage as a multi-purpose space, then it’s likely full of all kinds of items right now. You may be using it as a storage unit and your workshop, which is why it’s so cluttered. Even if you only use your garage for parking and storing items, it can still get disorganized in a hurry.
Due to all the reasons mentioned above, you have to start your organizing efforts by taking inventory. First, go into your Garage and pull everything that isn’t nailed down out of it. Now, together with a friend or a family member, start accounting for the contents of your Garage. You’re doing this for a few reasons.
First off, emptying your Garage now makes it easier to get its contents in order later. You’ll even be able to map out where you store items and even how you want to keep them. Taking inventory also gives you an idea of how many storage units you’ll need to purchase. Since we’re trying to save money, it would be best to get an accurate assessment and avoid unnecessary purchases.
This is also the time when you can decide what you want to keep, donate, sell, or discard. You may find some items inside your garage that you no longer need but still have value. Sell them and use the funds you obtain to purchase the storage items.
Sorting through all the items inside your Garage may take time, depending on how cluttered it is. Prepare to spend a big chunk of your weekend on this task.
Step 2: Get the Storage Items You’ll Need
Once you’re done taking inventory of the items inside your Garage, you can now prepare the storage units you’ll need. Collect all the spare containers you have at home and see how many you can find.
Old cabinets can also work well inside your Garage, and the same goes for old toy chests. You may also have plastic hooks lying around that can prove more useful inside your Garage.
Even after collecting all the extra storage items you have at home, you’ll probably still need a few more. That means you need to head to the store and make a few purchases. Storage bins are good buys. Get them in various sizes so you can store things like spare materials or perhaps cans of paint.
Toolboxes are great investments too. Use them to hold smaller items like screws, nuts, and nails. This is probably the item you’ll have to spend the most on, but it’s worth it because toolboxes are pretty durable.
You should also consider purchasing some pegboards. Like the wall hooks, the pegboards allow you to use space inside your Garage that may otherwise go unutilized. They will help a lot in terms of minimizing clutter.
Step 3: Build Some Shelves
You can also benefit from having additional shelves in your Garage. Purchasing shelves is an option, but you can also build them yourself. Bare shelves can be made out of bricks and planks of wood. They aren’t going to win any style points, but they work just as fine for storage purposes. Also, consider building shelves for your walls if you have new brackets.
Corner shelves are intelligent additions to the Garage, because they use space that isn’t often occupied. In addition, these are the best ones to buy because they are a bit harder to build.
Step 4: Start Storing Items Vertically
Those wall hooks, pegboards, and shelves will come in very handy as you start vertically storing items inside your Garage. Many hobbyists even prefer keeping their possessions that way.
Storing items vertically makes it easier for you to see what you have on hand. You don’t have to rummage through containers in search of that one specific item. Vertical storage also saves you from bumping into or stepping on different things. We all know how painful that can be, so consider storing more of your belongings vertically.
Step 5: Repurpose Old Items
Cut down on the number of storage items you’ll need to purchase by repurposing some old things. Look around your Garage, and you may find some items that can still be used as containers. For example, some of the cases for your old power tools may still be inside your Garage. Carve out the moulded plastic and then either place some dividers inside or use it as is to hold smaller items.
Old appliances such as freezers can also be transformed into large containers after a bit of cleaning. Even something like an old bathtub can be turned into something more useful after you process it with your power tools.
Step 6: Use Drawer Organizers
One of the best ways to stay organized inside your home and Garage is by using a drawer organizer. We all know what it’s like to deal with stuck drawers. They can be frustrating, especially if the tool you’re looking for is inside of them.
Of course, it may be your fault that the drawer is stuck in the first place. All the random junk you put in there may explain why it’s stuck. Drawer organizers can save you from having to experience that kind of problem again. You should get a few of them to use inside your Garage.
Step 7: Don’t Forget to Use Labels
Labelling will be very helpful when it comes to keeping your Garage organized moving forward. After all, many of us often make the biggest messes when we’re looking for something important. By the time we find that one thing, we’ve already rampaged through numerous containers like a tornado.
How to Organize a Messy Garage in 4 Easy Steps
Planning on getting your Garage organized is one thing, but actually taking the first step to declutter and clean your Garage is another. Depending on the size of your garage space and the amount of junk to declutter, tackling your garage organization project can either take a few hours, a full day or even an entire weekend. If you’re ready to take on the challenge of organizing your Garage, use this simple and easy guide to help you reclaim the valuable space in your Garage.
Garage organization can seem overwhelming. However, if you can take some time to assess and find out what’s in your garage, it will make the whole process a lot easier to see what you have to work with and what types of storage will work best when you actually begin cleaning and organizing. To begin, go through your Garage and make a quick inventory of all the things. This will allow you to determine how many of the things in your Garage you need to keep or have to toss out.
Once you have everything listed and taken into account—and depending on how much work is needed to be done and your target for completion—make cleaning your Garage a family project. Include family members, relatives, or even close friends. Assigning jobs will help speed up the process – and having company every step of the way puts a whole lot of fun in cleaning and organizing.
Now that you’re on your way to making your space far more functional and efficient, it’s time to actually get it done. Before you plunge into the organization process, make sure you’ve got the right tools and supplies in place so as to not accidentally create more mess as you’re working on decluttering your Garage. To start, gather the following:
- Basic cleaning supplies (broom, rags, vacuum cleaner)
- Heavy-duty trash bags
- Empty containers or boxes for storage
First, Declutter Your Garage
As you begin the process of cleaning, you should also start decluttering by eliminating some unnecessary things right off the bat. By getting rid of the items you don’t need, you won’t have to deal with them when deciding what to keep, donate, recycle, or sell.
Have your storage bins or boxes nearby as you begin going through the items you pull out of your Garage. Sort and label your piles according to their importance or value. Whatever that doesn’t make it to your keep, donate, or sell pile is automatically clutter and needs to be tossed out. Take a good look at each item and if you’re unsure whether to keep, donate, or sell an item, here are some general questions to ask yourself to help you decide:
- When was the last time I have put it into use?
- Do I have more than one or two of these items?
- Can I replace it easily?
- Is it broken or way past its prime in any way?
- What’s the worst thing that will happen if I get rid of it?
- Will it have a big effect on my maintaining an organized and efficient garage space?
Once you’ve asked yourself these questions, decide and sort as you go. Some options for sorting your garage clutter:
- Donate – If, by any means, they don’t serve any use to you anymore but are still in good condition and can be reused, keep them in your ‘donate’ pile. You’ll be surprised to see what your donations can do to those who need them more than you do. To start, you may know anyone in your family or circle of friends who can put the things you no longer need into good use; if not, you can reach out to your local community if they have any donation drives. One other way is to do research for any charity or non-profit organization that accepts any donation.
- Sell – Aside from having more space and reducing clutter, making a little money off of your garage cleanout is one of the perks of the organization process. You can hold a yard sale or put them up online to sell. Craigslist and Facebook Marketplace are some good places to list your items and advertise them.
- Recycle – Another option is the good old recycling. There are tons of simple DIY projects you can take on using some of the items you already have in your Garage.
Once your space is clutter-free and items are piled according to their designated use and priority, it’s time to do a deep clean before you put things back and organize. You can now start doing basic cleaning, removing every bit of dust that’s built up and getting rid of cobwebs and stains. It’s important to give the floor a good once over with a broom and mop to be thorough in all areas and make the room as spotless as possible.
Organize And Divide Garage Into Zones
Nowadays, garages are turned into multi-purpose spaces that store items from garden tools to sports equipment to all sorts of memorabilia. Therefore, when approaching organizing, it would help if you segregate your belongings based on their usefulness and types.
Now that all of the clutter is out figure out how much space your car or cars take, and then work from there. Start by categorizing the items in your ‘keep’ pile and putting similar items into one group. This way, you can arrange your items according to their use and organize them into specific organizing zones.
You can think of ‘zones’ as departments as done in stores. There are specific zones for garden tools, camping gear, sports equipment, car supplies, and so on. You can then create an organization system from your assigned zones and structure it according to your family’s needs and priorities. You will want to arrange them in a way that’s easy to find when you need them and trouble-free when you put them back.
Maintain Your Organized Garage
Garage cleaning and organization may be quite a huge project to tackle, but when you take it one step at a time and break it into manageable chunks, you can now reclaim the valuable space in your Garage. Of course, organizing a garage can look different for everyone, so it’s best to try out a few things until you figure out the perfect system that works for you and your family.
The next step to do is properly maintain your Garage to save more effort the next time you clean the place. A few final tips to do regularly to maintain a clean and efficient garage:
- Keep the floor clutter-free as possible.
- Invest in pesticides to prevent any insects or pests from living in your Garage
- Regularly sweep and give the floors a good scrub to avoid any build-up
Now that you’ve figured out how to best take on a messy garage, you can handle it better the next time and save more time and money. In addition, having physical spaces tidied up and decluttered, you will have more time to work on important tasks and ultimately decrease stress and improve your overall life and well-being.