Garage Organizing can be a daunting task. So big, that it just never gets done. You just close the door, and only go in there if you have to, but you wonder why you bother, because you can't find anything anyways right?
When you move into a house, everything that was not labeled or no one was sure about, got thrown in the garage right?
But like with all large projects, you need to break it down into manageable bits, that make it easier to start.
No one likes to look at a mountain of stuff, and then at their watch, and then attack it with fury making the mess worse as exhaustion sets in a few hours later, and now you need to be somewhere else.
The first thing you need to do, is sit down with a pad of paper and draw your floor plan of your garage. Most likely you will draw a large rectangle. But draw it anyway. Garage organizing takes patience. You want the most out of the space. If done right, this could be adding huge square footage to useable space in your house, and improve your equity.
If you are trying to sell your house, this is a HUGE plus, to have a neat and organized garage.
Once you have drawn your floor plan or rectangle, you now have to decide just what you want to do in your garage. Go through these points and see if any relate to your garage.
1. Want to park my car
2. Want a wood working shop
3. Storage of seasonal household items such as Christmas decorations etc
4. Storage of DIY supplies, such as paint, brushes, tools etc
5. Need to work on my hobby car
If any of the above items appeal to you, then you need to know this before you start.
If you need to be able to have a combination of the above, such as storage of seasonal items, and work on a hobby car, then you need to plan out your space to accommodate both or more.
So, in a garage the problem is there is usually more wall space than there is floor. Some even have a storage rafter or attic.
So, if you really want to make a difference with your garage organizing, you now have to decide how much money you are willing to spend? Your local hardware store will sell wall storage systems specifically designed for garages and basements. You can invest in those to get things off the floor, which makes an instant difference!
Or if money is tight, at least try and get those large plastic tubs that can stack on each other. There is nothing worse than cardboard boxes in the garage. They get dusty, dirty and if your garage is not air conditioned (most are not!) then they might get a bit damp smelling from summer humidity, and you may attract critters. So, invest in some plastic tubs. These can stack up against the wall, until you can afford a utility garage storage system. The tubs can be labeled and keep junk off the floor, and dry.
So, now you have to decide where in your garage you are going to put things, as well as work on your hobbies. If you have a window in your garage, then you are most likely going to want to work on your hobbies near natural light.
So, with your drawn rectangle, you now need to plan your layout. This preliminary planning is important, otherwise you will just be "re-arranging chaos" Meaning the piles of junk will get neater but just moved around unless you plan ahead.
Especially if you are trying to get your family involved in the cleanup. If you don't have a plan, there will be over excited kids moving boxes and junk out into the driveway or thrown in the backyard, but with no plan of bringing it back in!
So, once you have the plan on paper. Go and purchase what you can afford for your storage and your hobby area etc.. Whether this means a work bench on the window wall, and the utility storage shelves on the back wall, and a system for hanging tools on the wall such as a peg board, or simply purchasing plastic tubs to get the junk organized.
Now that you have everything ready to go. It is a nice day outside (hopefully) You can tackle the job of garage organizing, in an organized manner! If you want to break this project down into bite size pieces, depending on how bad your garage is, then work out a plan in stages. Example: Today will be sort out the boxes day. You may get so excited and involved that you may move on to step two and three!
The important thing, is that you got started! Trick yourself this way when you have big chores to do. Think of a small step in that chore that would help, convince yourself you are only going to tackle that first small step, and you may get sudden energy as the project becomes more exciting or when you see progress.
Line up areas on your driveway, for DONATIONS, KEEPERS, GARAGE SALE.
This way, when you look at an item, you can instantly decide where it is going, rather than back in a box. If you have help for your garage organizing, then this gives everyone clear instructions, and there is not chaos, as everyone is screaming, "where should I put this"
Make arrangements for your donations to be taken, or drive them yourself if you have a pickup truck or van the same day. You don't want these items laying around. If you like to do garage sales, then organize one corner of your garage for these items, and start tagging them now with prices, and get the sale organized while you are cleaning out the rest of the garage.
Make sure you really need or want an item before it gets put back in, or else chaos will happen again. Clearly label all tubs, and now the garage will be a nice place to go at the end of your day! Your family may just lose you in this instant square footage of additional space!