For many homeowners, your garage can pose a special challenge for creating a well-organized, livable space.  But with a little extra care, your garage can be use for more than just a long-term storage unit and you may actually be able to squeeze in your car!

Before we get into some ideas for ways you can simplify your garage, we wanted to highlight some of the reasons why the garage is often an underutilized part of the home: in most cases, it is typically uninsulated, which means it will never be a four-season room, and in some cases it has limited electrical capacity, which means it is often cluttered immediately with extension cords.  By taking the time to add insulation and proper electrical outfitting, you can immediately start off on the right foot with your garage, which is an excellent motivation for keeping it organized, and simplified.

With that said, here are some tips that should help the average homeowner create a more efficient garage:

  1. Make excellent use of your wall-space.  Unlike the rest of your house, yourgarage is a good place to maximize wall-space through the use of hooks, brackets, and other hardware.  In fact, some people recommend creating a continuous storage surface by adding plywood over bare studs, which can effectively double your wall space.
  2. Look up.  This could be considered the Home Depot or Lowes approach to storage.  If you don’t anticipate using some of your items on a regular basis, you shou
    ldn’t be afraid of adding shelves and cabinets that require a ladder to reach.  This can be the perfect place to store your large seasonal possessions, which will have the effect of uncluttering your space for the rest of the year when those items aren’t in use.
  3. Look way up.  You can install ceiling mounts to get added storage hanging overhead.  This is perfect for cumbersome items like bicycles, ladders, holiday items or spare building materials like wood boards.  You can also get really fancy and create simple carriages that can hold overhead storage bins that slide in and out easily.

Here are some products we love:

  1. garage-storage-2Frontgate Retractable Hose – The days of tangled hoses are gone!  With one tug the hose self-retracts and is stored in the wall mounted case.  We have one and love it!
  2. Old School lockers can be found for sale all over the internet – they make for great storage with easy installation.
  3. Bike mounts come in all shapes and sizes to fit any space you may have.

For most people, using their garage as a storage unit is a necessity.  But if you use the space efficiently, you can still have a well-organized, attractive garage that you can be proud of.