Yes, you can conquer that messy, dingy garage! With some careful up-front planning, you can feel energized— and even find lost treasures— when you take these three basic steps toward a cleaner and more organized garage:
1. Prioritize first. What do you want your garage to look like and accomplish for you when you’re done cleaning it out? Rather than groaning at the tangled-up Christmas lights or bags of crushed aluminum cans waiting to be recycled, focus on what you want: you want to come home to a garage where you can… Park your car? Store bicycles? Paint model trains? Build birdhouses? Begin with the end in mind by picturing what’s important to you and your family and making a list of priorities for how you will use the space.
2. Plan ahead: Decide what you’re removing, where it’s going, and how it’ll get there. A thorough garage clean-out requires planning and preparation so it’s completely done and successful without lingering loose ends for days or months following.
Cluttered and overfilled spaces may require a dumpster rental, so book in advance to ensure the nightmarish clutter in your garage isn’t sitting by your mailbox for days. It’s important to note that residential curbside trash pickup has limits and guidelines to follow.
If items you plan to move are larger than what will fit in your car, consider whether you’ll donate them to a charity offering donation pick-up services and book that appointment.
Likewise, if you’ll list any large items for sale, make arrangements for anything cumbersome to be sold and picked up, so you have room to maneuver and complete your project more efficiently and completely.
3. Order ahead: Decide what you want your finished garage clean-out to look like, what you need to buy or rent to accomplish it, and how you’ll get it home.
If you’ll be renting a pressure washer to tackle the concrete floor grime, be sure to reserve it in advance for your weekend project.
Remember to ask friends and family in advance if you’re welcome to borrow items like large box fans for air circulation before your project starts.
This is also a great time to make plans for family visits, sleepovers, and other outings for small children to ensure their safety while you’re potentially working with cumbersome items, cleaning chemicals, and other hazards.
Adding some garage organization elements? Measure and plan in advance so what you need is readily available when it’s time to put up shelves, hooks, and other simple clutter-fighting items.
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