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Spring Cleaning the Garage

Maybe you’ve been putting cleaning your garage off for months, or even years. News Flash: Spring is the best time to tackle this project.

A garage is an easy spot to toss things that seem like they have nowhere else to go or things that you’ll definitely “deal with later.” People tend to fling boxes into the garage instead of breaking them down, and then eventually this becomes a tower or wall of clutter that prevents them from finding anything they need.

If your garage is a bit of a disaster, you’re not alone. A study conducted by the National Association of Professional Organizers found that 50% of homeowners named the garage as their home’s most disorganized area.

But spring is here, the sunny skies are beckoning you to recreate outdoors and your bike is… trapped behind a bunch of rubble in the garage. It’s time to finally turn your unorganized garage into a functional space.

A Few Things You’ll Need for Garage Spring Cleaning

  • A broom and/or vacuum
  • all-purpose cleaner
  • Microfiber cloths
  • Cleaning gloves, because it may feel like an excavation
  • A step stool to reach those dusty shelves that hold items you forgot existed
  • Bins or boxes for the things you plan to donate or sell
  • Trash bags, because you probably shouldn’t hold onto those raggedy beanie babies forever

Cleaning Tips for Spring Cleaning Your Garage

1.) Create a plan

Envision the garage you’d like to have. Do you want to turn your garage into a home gym? A Pinterest-worthy man or lady cave? Perhaps you simply want to be able to find things in your garage without having a meltdown. Whatever your end goal may be, write out how you plan to achieve it. Put aside a weekend (or two) to tackle this project. Make sure to plan it on a dry weekend, since you’ll be hauling stuff outside.

When the time comes, open up that garage door to let in some sunlight and get to work.  Blasting some of your favorite tunes or a good podcast will help keep you upbeat.

2.) Start small

Do the easy things first, like sorting recyclables or throwing away old junk. Then, move on to adding things to the donation bins. Create four sections – toss, donate, keep, sell.

Alternatively, you can pick a small section that needs some extra attention and start there. 

 If you’re questioning whether to keep something, just ask yourself if you’ve used it in the past year. If not, toss it.

If you have items that are too valuable to part with and not enough space, we’ve got you covered with our short and long-term storage facility.

3.) Pull everything out

It can seem like a daunting task – but taking everything out of your garage that isn’t nailed in place or screwed down is essential to fully clean a garage. Remember, think happy thoughts and turn up that music if you need to.

On the bright side, you’ll probably find some stuff that you never thought you’d see again. It’s almost like a treasure hunt, except that the treasure is your fifth-grade yearbook, the year that you gave yourself bangs.

4.) Air it out and clean it up

Keep your garage door open to give your decluttered garage a much-needed airing out. Vacuum or sweep your garage and wipe down your shelves if you have them. Clean the inside and outside of your garage door. Then, whip out your garden hose and an all-purpose cleaner to get the remaining crud off of your garage floor. If you don’t have a hose, you can use a mop.

After your garage is squeaky clean, it’s time to organize.

Steps for Organizing Your Garage This Spring

  1. Categorize what you’ve decided to keep

Typical categories include sports and rec. equipment, camping gear, seasonal decorations, gardening supplies, and tools.

  • Decide where you want your items to live

Figure out which items are used frequently and keep those on a shelf at eye level or in an easy to reach area. Continue doing this with all of your items. Very high or very low shelves should be used for things that are used less often.

  • Look into smart storage that won’t break the bank

You can maximize your garage storage with DIY wire shelving. You can also make some garage storage towers. Both of these options are quick, easy and inexpensive. A garage with a car or two is generally tight, utilize walls to maximize space.

Is Spring the Perfect Time to Converting Your Garage?

If you want more living space, converting the garage is an easier and less expensive task than building an addition to your home and it can increase your property value.

Garage conversion ideas

  • Guest studio

Whether you want to rent out the space as a mother-in-law suite or have extra room for guests, this is one of the most popular choices when converting a garage.

  • Home office

Create the noise insulated, private office of your dreams. If you’re running your own business from home, just think, Apple was started in a garage.

  • Playroom for the kiddos

Your kids and their friends can play in their converted playroom without disturbing anyone in the house. It almost sounds too good to be true.

  • Fitness room

Sick of people sparking up conversations with you at the gym while you have your earbuds in? Imagine the convenience of having a fitness room right at your house. It’s always open and has everything you need to get physical, and none of the awkward interactions.

  • Man or lady cave

It’s reminiscent of the treehouse from your childhood, the one with the sign written in crayon that said no boys (or girls) allowed. Except now, your space is sophisticated. The password to get in is far more complicated. Maybe “No Boys Allowed” is written in cursive on a trendy farmhouse wood sign.

Spring Tips for Converting your Garage

  • Make a checklist of what you want/need and keep the cost in mind

There’s a lot that goes into making a room cozy. Garages aren’t built for comfort. You’ll need to raise the floor to allow for insulation, install the insulation, a heating and cooling system, and proper electrical wiring/plumbing. Those are just the basics.

  • Check that your new room meets city codes

If it doesn’t and you go ahead with the project, you could face hefty fines. Consult a building inspector to avoid the headache.

  • Hire the right people

Working with trusted professionals ensures that you’ll meet all the building codes and safety projects. The right professionals will tell you upfront what will work and what won’t.

According to HomeAdvisor, a typical garage conversation takes about 4-6 weeks, which can feel like a long time. But once you’ve finally achieved the Pinterest-worthy space you’ve been dreaming about, it will all feel worth it.

Moving in Spring with Colonial Van Lines

Maybe you are cleaning out the garage this spring because a long distance move is in your future. If so, it makes sense to start going through the garage for many reasons:

  1. Decluttering unwanted items is a must-do before a move. You don’t want to pay to haul junk that you don’t use or need.
  2. The garage is often the home for items that are rarely or seasonally used, so it makes sense to start with this room in the early stages of the move.
  3. Once you create space in your garage, you can start to use it to organize items from other rooms that you want to pack for the new home.
  4. The movers may use the garage as their pathway to get large items out to the truck.

With all this moving talk, you may have some questions about the process. We’re always here to answer your call. Our professional representatives are standing by to walk you through the process of a professional move. Contact us today.

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