During this unprecedented time, staying at home and practicing social distancing are two of the most important ways to protect yourself and others. If you are looking for a home activity to get you through the days, why not try and tackle spring cleaning?

Not only can organizing and decluttering make your home a more enjoyable space, it can also help reduce anxiety and stress, something we all need right now.  Your garage is a great place to start, especially if you are trying to squeeze extra living space out of tight quarters.

Below are a few organizing tips to make the most of your garage.

Invest in shelves

Leaving stuff lying around may evoke bohemian charm, but it also contributes to clutter. That’s one reason storage shelves are gaining popularity. Builder magazine reports that the total number of households who purchased garage storage systems has increased 8% year over year. These shelves can be particularly useful when positioned against the walls of a garage. A good shelving system allows you to stack and organize while providing a neat aesthetic appeal.

Consider the ceiling

If you want to clear space on the ground, try storing items above. For some homeowners, this can be problematic, as garage door openers often take up a portion of the ceiling area. A wall mount garage door opener eliminates this problem. For example, the LiftMaster® 8500W opener mounts against the wall of your garage, freeing space above.

This gives you options. A few include:

  • Hanging items from your ceiling, like a kayak.
  • Putting a plank across the top of the garage to store assorted items.
  • Creating a ceiling track storage system for large containers. This allows you to slide containers into place to hang over your garage.
Ceiling storage saves space on the garage floor.

In all of these cases, you are removing items from the floor that are restricting your square footage, while still finding a place for them in your home. You also transform previously used storage space into a more workable living area.  

Divide your garage into different “grids” based on item type

It can be helpful to organize your garage thematically. Got a bunch of sports equipment? Put all of the items in one bin or area of the garage. Put your tools in another area. Gardening and landscaping equipment? Give that stuff its own wall. The more you gather like-purposed items together, the more efficient it will be to store (and find) them. These types of items often have similar shapes or purposes, so they can fit together well and work harder for your as you try to optimize your area.

Add Hooks

Small additions can go a long way and that is certainly the case when it comes to hooks in the garage. As is the case with ceiling storage, implementing hooks on your wall will free up space from your floor plan and allow you to have more walking room. Hooks are perfect for hanging gardening tools, rakes and an assortment of other handy items you’d like to keep close — but out of the way. If you have a workbench (or not), you could also set up a pegboard, which makes it easy to hang items without drilling holes.

A pegboard makes it easy to organize your tools.

Get a shoe rack

You may be surprised by one of the top enemies of garage organization: shoes. It’s easy to wear many different pairs of shoes when going in and out of the house through the garage. The problem is that the shoes usually get left in the garage without being picked up and quickly end up enveloping a surprising amount of space. A simple shoe rack can help organize all of the pesky pairs that keep invading your walking path. Since shoes are also some of your most frequently used items, a rack goes a long way in creating a system that you will desperately need — day in and day out.