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Week #14 Organized Home Challenge
Organize Your Garage

This week's challenge is to organize your garage, so below I've got tips for decluttering this space, plus ideas for organizing according to zones so your garage can serve all the functions you need and want it to.

Take the organize your garage challenge, which provides step by step instructions for getting this area organized so you can fit your car into the garage, or otherwise use the space the way you want! {part of the 52 Week Organized Home Challenge on Home Storage Solutions 101}use this Pin it button to save to Pinterest

Have you looked in your garage lately, and I mean really looked at it, as opposed to just quickly parking your car in there and hurrying into your house.

Or, really, can you actually park your car in your garage? If not, do you want to?

Life happens, and for some reason it seems that the garage is the place a lot of clutter and junk gets stashed when we need to put that thing, "somewhere" for a while. So it can hold all kinds of things from boxes, bikes and other similar toys, tools, yard equipment, sports equipment, auto care products, and more.

Now that the seasons are changing it's time to tackle the garage. So this week let's continue working on the storage areas of our home this week, which started last week with the basement, and is continuing next week with the attic, and clear the clutter and organize all the stuff we've got piled into the garage so we can use this space the way we want to!

Are you new here? The Organize Your Garage Challenge is part of the 52 Weeks To An Organized Home Challenge. (Click the link to learn how to join us for free for future and past challenges if you aren't already a regular reader).

Step 1: Declutter Your Garage

Take the organize your garage challenge, which provides step by step instructions for getting this area organized so you can fit your car into the garage, or otherwise use the space the way you want! {part of the 52 Week Organized Home Challenge on Home Storage Solutions 101} #GarageOrganization #GarageStorage #OrganizeGarageuse this Pin it button to save to Pinterest

The first step in the Organize Your Garage Challenge is to get rid of all the junk and clutter in your garage that has accumulated, over time.

Just like with the other storage areas we have in our homes, the attic and the basement, the garage may have become a dump it and forget it zone.

We often place items in a sort of limbo in this area, deliberately putting off making decisions about them, not wanting to have to decide if we should continue to keep them in our home.

I know my family is definitely guilty of this, and so we've had some pretty big thing in our garage over the years including old appliances, outgrown bicycles and similar items, and even abandoned fitness equipment.

If you're like me and you've got bulky or large items stashed in this space, you may need to rent a truck to get stuff to the dump, get a dumpster, or call a charity that can come out and pick up large items when you're decluttering.

How to declutter your garage

But does the thought of decluttering this space make you feel overwhelmed? Are you concerned you'll actually make a bigger mess in the process of trying to remove the clutter?

If you've got those concerns I completely understand. To help you with this task I've written an article on how to declutter your garage to keep you from feeling overwhelmed, and also to make sure you don't make a bigger mess than necessary.

One of the main concepts discussed in that article, in more detail, is how you need a systematic approach to this decluttering process. For each item in the garage use one of the six choices listed within the how to declutter your home article. Every item then must "earn" its spot back into your garage.

This method forces you to make hard decisions about items, and actually get rid of things that don't belong.

You can also check out the getting rid of storage area clutter hall of fame for a list of all the decluttering missions I've suggested for these areas of your home and for additional inspiration.

Step 2: Make A Plan For Your Garage Using Zones

garage clutter

While decluttering your garage you should have an end goal in mind of what you'd like to do with this area of your home. Since there can be a lot of space within your garage I find it handy to think of possible uses for it in zones.

Here are some of the possible zones you should consider using your garage for, during the Organize Your Garage Challenge.

Car Parking Zone

A major goal for many people when organizing the garage is to be able to park a car or two in there. Every time I need to pull my car out of this space, and don't have to defrost it or scrape off ice and snow I say a silent "thank you" for a decluttered garage. Ahhh, the luxury! :)

If you feel this way, before you add anything back into the space after pulling everything out, pull your car(s) in and mark off how much space you need for the vehicles, such as with sidewalk chalk on the floor.

Don't forget to calculate the space needed with the doors of the vehicles opened, so you and your family can easily get in and out.

Workshop Or Work Area Zone

garage workbenchGarage workbench
[Click to purchase on Amazon]
(pegboard sold separately)

Along with housing your vehicles your garage can serve other functions as well, depending on your wants and desires.

If you or your loved one likes to work and putter in the garage, either with tools, car car products, a gardening hobby, or whatever else, make sure to plan space for these activities.

It is also nice to have a flat clear surface you can use for doing small do it yourself projects, and your garage may be just the spot for it.

It is always good to plan to keep all the necessary tools and supplies for such work areas close at hand to this space, when planning this zone of your garage.

If you want to know what tools I suggest you keep in your home for basic home repairs and simple DIY projects you can check out my list of tools for your home tool kit here.

Storage Zone

The other type of common zone for your garage is as a storage area. There is nothing wrong with storing items in your garage, and in fact it makes sense in many instances to keep items that are used outdoors at your home, or that relate to your vehicles, within this space.

Because of the amount of stuff you've got in your house, or because of how it is laid out, this may also be the place you store items that otherwise would go in some people's basements or attics. (That is the case in our house, for example.)

If you're using this area for that type of storage, as well, be mindful of the storage conditions you've got in your garage though. Consider the heat fluctations (does it get very hot and very cold, or is it climate controlled), and is the area prone to rodents and insect pests?

Only store items in this area that can tolerate these conditions without being damaged.

Step 3: Organize Items You're Keeping In Your Garage

The third step in the Organize Your Garage Challenge is to organize the items you've decided should stay in your garage according to the zones you've designated in step 2 above.

The first part of this process is to categorize all of the items you want to keep within this space, categorizing them and putting like items with like.

Common categories of items you may have, and want to keep in your garage include the following:

rubbermaid fast trackRubbermaid FastTrak garage wall storage system
available on [Click here to purchase]

Next, designate an area in your garage for each category you've created. You may want to utilize some of the storage ideas and solutions I'll mention below, in step 4, when trying to fit everything into the space you've designated for it.

small parts organizerMulti-drawer storage cabinet for small parts
[Click here to purchase on]

As you organize, consider how you'll store the items. With many small items it is best to place them into containers, instead of having them out loose. Containerize as many things as possible.

Putting things into boxes and bins is also helpful for keeping out pests, such as mice and bugs which could damage the items you have stored in there. It is best to use stackable plastic containers with good fitting tops, instead of cardboard, where possible, for this very reason.

On the other hand, realistically, large items (like bikes, lawn equipment, etc.) won't often fit into a storage container and therefore those types of items must be dealt with individually.

Please realize, too, that only so much stuff can fit into an area, so as you work seriously consider whether all of these items you've decided should fit there really will.

If they won't you may need to purge more items as clutter. Keep paring down until everything fits, without anything feeling too cramped.

Step 4: Consider These Garage Storage Solutions

More than other types of storage areas within your home, your garage does not typically have a lot of free floor space. Instead, the floor space must be kept clear so that you can park your cars.

tool pegboardTool pegboard [Click here to
purchase on Amazon

Therefore, you really need to think outside the box when considering garage storage, and that includes using some of my top 15 favorite types of storage solutions. Some of the best of these solutions that works for the garage include:

  • Wall storage (including wall storage systems, such as the Rubbermaid FastTrack system shown above, and discussed in more detail in the linked article)
  • Hooks and pegs (including the pegboard shown to the right, used for storing and organizing tools)
  • Shelves -- sturdy ones are best, but remember everything is out in the open when using them
  • Storage cabinets (including those for small parts, as shown above), which are best for items that may need to be stored securely for safety reasons (such as chemicals), or to hold items you don't want readily seen
  • Overhead storage for items that aren't used often, and can't easily be stored on the walls

Step 5: Label And Inventory Your Garage Storage

garage storage inventory form[Click for free printable]

The last step in the Organize Your Garage Challenge is to label all the boxes or other containers of stuff you've decided to store in there. Make sure to label all four sides of each container, as well as the top, so you can tell from any direction what is in the box.

In addition, as you label each box with a short word or two about its contents, also number it, and fill out the garage storage inventory form I've created for you to use along with this challenge.

Using this form allows you to better remember the full contents of the container, and reference the list as needed so you can find what you want, when you need it.

In addition to the inventory of storage boxes, I also suggest labeling shelves and even areas of wall space within your garage. This helps everyone in your family know where to return various items after use, so your organizational system stays maintained.

Listen To Taylor's Video Tips For This Week's Organized Home Challenge & Declutter 365 Missions

Do you want more in-depth tips and instructions for how to do this week's missions and challenge all about decluttering and organizing your garage? If so, I've got recorded video tips from me, Taylor, from the video archives in the Declutter 365 Premium group, all about this week's challenge and missions.

These video tips are available on demand in the archives, once you're a member of the group.

In Week #14's video I discussed the following topics, among others:

  • Mindset: Progress, not perfection
  • How to deal with sentimental objects and keepsakes found in storage areas
  • Possible goals when decluttering the garage
  • Garage organization tips
  • Declutter 365 missions for week
Declutter 365 Premium video archive available on demand all about decluttering and organizing your garage, on Home Storage Solutions 101use this Pin it button to save to Pinterest

I suggest watching the video archive for the week, perhaps while you're doing some decluttering or cleaning around your home, before starting the week's missions and Challenge, and then you'll be able to breeze through this week's worth of decluttering missions, as well as organize what's necessary for the 52 Week Organized Home Challenge, based on the advice and instructions within those videos.

It really is like having me, Taylor, available, 24-7, as your decluttering and organizing coach, for every area of your home!

Plus, once you're a member of Declutter 365 Premium you get access to not only this video, but all the videos for the 52 weeks of the year, for 5 years (that's over 260 videos available in the archives!)

Learn more about the Declutter 365 Premium Group

getting rid of storage area and garage clutter hall of fame

Get This Storage Areas Decluttering Checklist + 32 Other Decluttering Checklists For Your Home

Right now you're decluttering storage areas within your home, and there's a lot of stuff to declutter in these spaces.

Get your 2 page storage areas decluttering checklist, plus 32 other decluttering checklists, to help you declutter your entire home here.

Get this storage areas decluttering checklist and 32 other decluttering checklists for your home {on Home Storage Solutions 101}

I've done the hard work of breaking down these tasks into smaller more manageable steps for you, so you don't get overwhelmed or worry you're forgetting a task, and you can go at the pace you want, whether that's fast or slow.

In addition, you can tackle these decluttering tasks in whatever order you want when you use these checklists!

Click here to learn more about 33 Decluttering Checklists Pack

Tell Me How The Organize Your Garage Challenge Is Going For You

I would love to know how this week's Organize Your Garage Challenge is going. You can tell me your progress or give me more ideas for how you've organized this area of your home in the comments below.

I also would love to see before and after pictures of your organized garage, once you've completed the challenge. Submit your pictures (up to four per submission) and blog posts and get featured in the Creative Storage Solutions Hall of Fame. You've worked hard to get organized, so now here's your chance to show off!

Sneak Peek For Next Week's Challenge

attic organizing challenge

We're working on our homes slowly, one area at a time, so don't get too distracted from the Organize Your Garage Challenge this week. However, I know some of you love to know what's coming next, so I'll tell you.

We're slowly working through the major storage areas in our home. Next week we'll do the last of them, as we tackle organizing the attic.

Make Sure You Make The Most Of These 52 Organizing Challenges

Get your copy of the printable one page 52 Week Organized Home Challenge schedule for the year here, so you can see all the challenges we're working on.

Get your schedule for this year's 52 Week Organized Home Challenge

Further, if you'd like to join a community of others who are all commmitted to these organizing challenges and corresponding decluttering missions, and want more interaction with me, Taylor, video archives of Taylor providing more tips for each of these challenges and missions, as well as live monthly group coaching sessions focusing on the skills and habits necessary to maintain your home from now on, I'd urge you to join the private and exclusive Declutter 365 Premium Facebook group (you can learn more about it at the link).

Declutter 365 missions premium

In addition, have you gotten your Declutter 365 Products yet, to make sure you can get even more assistance with decluttering and organizing your home this year? There are both free products (like the Declutter 365 calendar, a $20 value), as well as add-ons, such as daily text messages, planner stickers, and a Premium Facebook group, as well as a pack of printabe decluttering checklists.

Declutter 365 products to help you declutter your home over the course of this year

organize your garage challengeuse this Pin it button to save to Pinterest

Some links on this page are affiliate links, meaning that if you purchase a product through them I receive a small commission which helps me provide this information to you for free, plus support my family. My integrity and your satisfaction are very important to me so I only recommend products I would purchase myself, and that I believe would benefit you. To learn more please see my disclosure statement.

Click here to get your Declutter 365 products for 2024

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When you work through the Declutter 365 missions, and accompanying 52 Week Organized Home Challenges, you'll be able to declutter your home one mission at a time, organize what's left, and learn the skills, habits and routines to maintain your space from now on.

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