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Garage Organization

Garage organization is typically an ongoing project. Many people including our family store so much stuff in their garage they can't even fit their car(s) in! In fact I'm currently in the process of cleaning and organizing our garage with the goal of getting our cars back in by winter... much to the chagrin of my family. Uh huh, well I'm sure they'll thank me when they don't have to scrape ice off their car windows in a few months. But I digress...

Below are seven storage resources I've found helpful for garage organization...

1. Shelves - Attach shelves to the walls of the garage to increase your storage space. There are also stand-alone shelving units that are perfect in the garage. They are typically made of heavy-duty plastic or metal and can hold all kinds of items such paint cans, extension cords, gardening tools and so on.

2. Overhead storage - Overhead garage storage is an excellent way to use what is otherwise plentiful but wasted space. Add some shelves and store items that you don't need during certain seasons such as pool supplies or holiday decorations. If you don't want to build permanent shelves, there are hanging shelf units that can attach to the rafters to provide extra storage space.

3. Pegboard - Pegboard, slotboard or slatwall are good options in the garage as well. They can be easily customized by adding hooks and baskets to hold tools, gardening items, hardware, cleaning supplies and much more.

4. Tool Hangers - These are sort of like "hanging systems" for holding tools. There are roller versions that grab the handles and hold them in place. There are also standard hooks that will hold tools with the handles hanging down. Keeping tools out of the way using tool hangers makes things not only neater but also safer.

5. Store Pod - These small pods are waterproof, heavy-duty plastic garage storage units that you attach to the beams above. They kind of look like a large plastic bag with shelves inside. The front has a clear plastic door that zips closed. And they have ventilation slots to help reduce dust and mildew, while still keeping pests away from the things being stored.

6. Sports storage - If your family is involved in a lot of sports, there are probably lots of balls and bats, shoes and other gear that need a home. Instead of tripping over them all the time invest in (or make if you're handy) holders specifically designed for sports equipment. You'll find sports storage for all kinds of sports equipment including golf clubs, baseball bats, hockey equipment and more. You might also want to invest in bike racks that can be mounted on the wall or ceiling. Hang younger kid bikes down lower and adult bikes up higher.

7. Cabinets - Cabinets with a work surface are perfect for the garage. Best of all, you can close the doors and hide any clutter. You also have a work area for projects that are too messy or smelly to do in the house. Many garage organization cabinets also come with locks - not only to protect your tools, but also to keep small children safe.

When it comes to garage organization, it's best to assess and develop at least a rough plan before you invest in any of the above storage options. For example, your garage might only have 2 feet of space from the outer wall to where the garage door starts. You'd need to measure cabinets to be sure they don't extend out too far into the space intended for your cars. Same for other storage options. Make sure they're going to fit where you envision installing them. Decide ahead of time what will work best in your garage for your family's particular storage needs and then go to it!

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