Finding a place to store items in your new California home can be a struggle if you do not utilize your given storage space appropriately. Oftentimes, garages become the home’s major storage space, but if you do not use the space effectively, your garage can rapidly become a disorganized mess where you cannot find what you need when you need it. To get you off on the right foot, we want to provide you with four tips to get your new garage in order right away so you can avoid the mess which might otherwise quickly develop.
Store According to Usage
There are basically three levels of items you are going to store in your garage. There are the items which need to be stored long-term. This might be childhood memorabilia, items you want to give to your children when they get older, or other things which might not be used for several years but which you do not want to give away or throw out. These items should be stored high up so they are out of the way. The second level is seasonal items such as holiday decorations and seasonal items. These items should be stored medium height. In this way, you can access them when you need the items, but they are still out of the way a little. The third level is everyday or regularly used items. This might be sports equipment or home improvement tools. These items should be stored on the lowest level. Depending upon the season, items might move between the medium and lowest level.
Create a Mud Room
If the main entrance to your home is through your garage, create a place just by the door into the house where people can take off their shoes and other items so they are not tracking outdoor garbage into your house. An inexpensive shoe rack or even a rubber mat can be used for shoes. A coat rack or small hooks can also go in this are so people can take off jackets or sweatshirts. Other items such as swim gear or bags can also be hung on the rack or hooks. This also helps with the problem of kids (or adults) being unable to find their shoes and other items. If they are in the mud room, they are easily accessible.
Do not be afraid to reuse items for another purpose or to be a creative organizer. For example, consider using PVC pipes cut into small sections and attached to the wall for easy storage of outdoor tools and other items with long handles. Pegboards attached to the wall are also a great way to keep tools and other items organized and off the floor. Other things you might consider doing are putting up hooks for the storage of bikes and using bungee cords stretched out and attached to the wall to keep soccer balls and basketballs in place. You may also consider using wire laundry baskets for the storage of smaller outdoor toys such as baseballs and footballs.
Overall, it is important to utilize your storage space as efficiently as possible. Do what works for you. Whereas shelving works great for some people, for others, that just encourages throwing everything on the shelves and not worrying about it until it becomes a big mess. Use storage bins if that works for you. No matter how you go about organizing things, it is a good idea to label anything which is stored in a container and store similar items together. If you are planning to park a vehicle (or multiple vehicles) in your garage, make sure you use your wall space efficiently and that you are careful about how much you store on the floor.
Do Regular Reorganizing
Once or twice a year, set aside a day where you can go through the items in your garage. This is a time to reevaluate your organization system and decide if there are any changes you need to make. It is also a time to throw out, sell, or give away items you really are not using anymore. If you have kept your garage in order, it does not need to be a big project, but you still may need to set aside a date. Do your annual garage cleaning the first Saturday after the kids get out of school, or clean the garage the weekend when Daylight Savings Time begins. If you have the cleaning planned for the same time every year, it will be easier to remember.
If you are ready for a fresh start in a new home with a new garage, contact us. At San Joaquin Valley Homes, we have several homes which are either currently ready for their first owner or which will be available in the near future.