How to Have a Garage that’s the Envy of the Neighborhood

If pulling into the garage raises your blood pressure a point or two, we understand. The garage is often the stopping point for things that are taken out of the car, but not into the house, or things that have to be gotten out of the house, but need to be readily to hand. Things that you use in the yard and garden and things that you use for sports and barbeques, it all seems to accumulate in the garage.

You don’t have to be a neat freak to have a garage you wouldn’t mind having your neighbors wander into. Just apply these basic principles to the way you arrange your stuff.

To Everything There is a Season

We’re not just talking about the Christmas decorations here. What are the chances you’ll need that sled in the summer or the barbeque tools in the winter?

Whether you use bins on shelves or hang them on ceiling-mounted rails, putting anything that won’t be used for the next three months up, up, and away will give the things you need to get to regularly right now a little breathing space.

Out of Sight Out of Mind

For many of us the reason we have everything sitting out where we can see it is that if we can’t see it we’ll never remember where we put it. But then there are so many things in sight that we can’t see what is right under our noses.

Labels are great, but if you’re a highly visual person that may not be a lot of help. Try taking a picture of the type of thing that is in the box or bin and taping the picture to the container. So if it’s the kids games that you only need to get to when the grandkids visit you might take a picture of the Candyland box top. Easily recognizable and a clue to what lives inside the box.

Allow for a Little Mess

Because if you have to put things away too neatly (or if your kids have to be too precise about where things land) the system will fail within a week. So make it as tidy as it needs to be to confine and camouflage the clutter and no more. And remember the more often a thing is used the less precise the system for storing it probably needs to be. A tool that’s used two or three times during the season has a good chance of being returned to exactly the spot reserved for it, but the soccer/basketball/football container shouldn’t require a lot of thought or aim.

Repurposed Items Can be Cheap and Useful

An old filing cabinet can be spraypainted and turned on its side with the drawers removed as an easy corral for long handled garden tools, a cheap canvas tool belt can be tacked to the wall to hold short handled tools or even extra sunglasses, bottles of sunblock, a flashlight, or cleaning supplies. Old bookcases can be the perfect shelving units, and empty sauce jars can organize nails, screws, and other small items.

Extra Points for Pretty

Not only will attractive storage options make you feel better about your space, they’ll also have the psychological effect of encouraging consistent neatness. (We can’t promise that effect will work on kids, mind you.) Consider adding a fresh coat of paint to the walls or covering them with corkboard, pegboard, or plywood painted with chalkboard paint.

If you’re like most of us, the garage is the first thing you see when you get home — wouldn’t it be great if instead of increasing your stress it actually gave you something to smile about?


We’re here if you need to close on your dream home fast (we are, after all, the “home of the 8 Day Close”) and we can help you get the right mortgage for you even when your credit isn’t great. Call your local office, or fill out our easy on-line form, to get one of our licensed loan officers working on the right financing to get you into the home of your dreams!

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