Garages are amazing. After having a home with one, I honestly can’t imagine ever living without one – especially during the winter time. The downside; it’s almost a guaranteed mess! When company is coming over for the holidays, you need to clean out your car, or you don’t have time to run something down to the basement – it suddenly all ends up in the garage. We’ve come up with some handy ideas for keeping things organized – and a great winter project to tackle after the holidays (when you probably acquired more of a mess out there).

Create/designate certain areas of your garage for certain items. In our garage we have one wall designated for rakes/shovels/ladders and all other outdoor equipment you need regularly accessible. We have one other wall designated for recreational “stuff” – a section for fishing, bikes, golf clubs, and outdoor toys. We have a section on the back wall designated for tools – with a workbench and peg board. The last area on the back wall has shelving where we store items that are not used as regularly and don’t need to be as easily accessible. (think Rubbermaid storage bins!) Even make sure to designate a space for your garbage and recycling bin. They tend to take up a lot of space, and if they don’t have a designated ‘home’ often get left in the most inconvenient space. If all of that still leaves you needing more storage, there are some simple ways to mount hanging storage from the ceiling of the garage – we haven’t gotten there yet, but I imagine it’s in our future!

Within each area, make the most out of the space. For the walls, the more hooks, hangers, and shelves you have the better use of the space you will get. If you have all the rakes and shovels hanging off the floor, you’ve suddenly cleared up space – or at the least made it easier to get in and out of your car. Make sure to build shelves that are heavy duty. They will be permanent, so you want to be sure they can hold whatever you may decide they need too down the road – and keep in mind that it’s your garage, so function outweighs décor every time.

Once you have created a space that has purpose, it is easier to keep things in order. And if by chance, things get messy (let’s be realistic – “when” things get messy), it’s an easier project to put everything back in its place.