Garage full to the brim with old furniture, broken wheelbarrows, and spider webs? Then now's a good time to think about clearing out the clutter and reclaiming some of that valuable space.
I'm sure your car would appreciate a roof over its head... what about a home office/creative space? or how about a new rumpus room for the kids.
Here's how we do it....
1. Pull out everything onto your driveway.
Firstly, wait for a nice Sunny (non-rainy) Sunday and size up the problem at hand. It's easier to organise your new space with a blank canvas, so drag everything out of the cluttered mess and move it onto your driveway.
Here you'll be able to see what you have to contend with and, if it's been an age since you've seen the floor, maybe even uncover some old treasures you forgot you owned.
Don’t forget… once you’ve moved everything out, give the empty garage a thorough clean, because you may not see it in this state for a while.
2. Piles are your friend
Now start piling your stuff into 3 piles
- Things you need this month - this includes your golf clubs, sporting gear, guest bedding, cleaning detergents and gardening equipment.
- Things you'll need to keep, but don't necessarily need right now - Furniture, camping gear, archive boxes, out-of-season clothes and family keepsakes.
- Things you'll never need again - Are you ever going to reuse those broken planter boxes? when was the last time you wore that beige corduroy suit? are you ever going read that pile of magazines? This is the time for all the important questions.
3. The three towers
Now that you’ve organised your stuff into workable piles, you can get on with the satisfying part.
This is your keep-pile, so size up the amount of stuff you need to move back in and decide whether it fits with your original plan. If you were to move all of this stuff back inside will you have room for the home office, or to park your car inside? You may need a second round of sorting….
Think about how you could organise your new space with shelving, wall hooks, hanging shelves, and storage tubs or baskets.
If you have a double garage, a great use of space is to use a shelving system down the middle to partition the garage into 2 separate rooms.
The stuff you want to keep, but don’t need right away. The perfect candidate for offsite storage! Self-storage is a great way to virtually increase the size of your house and avoid the hassle and enormous cost of moving to a larger house. Consider it like a new room to your house, just stored offsite. You’ll be able to hang on to your furniture and other rarely used (or not currently used) household items, while freeing up a ton of space to make your house happier.
With this pile, you have 3 options: Sell, Give or Toss. If it’s in good condition but you no longer have a use for it, then there’s a good chance someone else will want to part with their hard-earned in exchange for it. Post an ad in Gumtree for Free, or pay a bit to list on eBay. Better still, if you have a lot offload, get into your community spirit and hold a garage sale
If you don’t think that anyone would pay for it, or you would rather just give it away, consider donating to your local Vinnies or Salvos. Alternatively, there are Pay-it-Forward Facebook groups set up in suburbs all over Australia to give away your stuff to your local community.
If it’s of no use to anybody, try recycling or last resort... bin it. If you don’t think it’s worth anything, don’t give it to a charity because chances are they’ll just have t pay to discard it.