With the New Year’s celebrations and holiday season for many of us now over, our attention turns to the traditional New Year’s resolution.
A lot of us view New Year’s resolutions as a pain. Others welcome the opportunity and challenge to better themselves by using the new year as a motivator for personal growth and improvement.
Getting in shape, eating better, learning a new skill, and volunteering more are all popular New Year’s resolutions. Getting your home organized is another big one. So why not start with the garage?
Garage improvement strategies that are proven to work
Why focus on your garage over other disorganized spaces in your home? Well, it’s commonly the untidiest room in homes.
In a National Association of Professional Organizers survey, 50% of homeowners said their garage was the most disorganized area of their house.
Your garage also takes up a sizeable portion of your home’s overall square footage. Therefore, you’re unable to get as much value from your garage space if you’re not using it to its full potential.
Your garage should be used for parking vehicles, not storing clutter. Consider that the majority of homeowners now use the garage as the primary entry and exit point to their house. Why not clear the clutter so you can park inside easier? You also wouldn’t have to look at stacks of junk you’ll never use on a daily basis.
Don’t settle for the status quo of having a garage that lacks visual appeal and is too messy to function properly. It should be viewed as an extension of your living space that’s as comfortable, useful, and aesthetically pleasing as any other part of your home.
These seven proven garage improvement strategies can help you to achieve your New Year’s resolution of finally getting your garage in order.
1. Declutter first
Decluttering, the first of our garage improvement strategies is simple, but can be time-consuming. Clearing out all that unnecessary junk will make it easier to evaluate your garage space and determine what type of storage systems and improvements it will really need.
Garage clutter doesn’t just clog up your floor and limit the space’s functionality, it also:
- makes it harder to find things
- attracts dust and limits airflow (which lowers the air quality in the room)
- creates tripping and fire safety hazards
- attracts pests (like mice and insects) who like to create nests in anything with paper or fabric
Once you’ve tossed, donated, or sold whichever items comprised all of your clutter, you’ll have a clearer sense of what you own. Now we have to find somewhere to store all of it besides the garage floor!
2. Maximize your garage storage space
It’s almost impossible to store items like garden tools and sports equipment on your garage floor and not have the space look disorganized.
Without a proper garage organization system in place (or a few of them), your garage’s storage capabilities will never be fully maximized. The solution is to turn to areas of your garage with underused storage space – the walls and overhead.
Slatwall storage panels
Adding slatwall panels to your garage walls will greatly open up your storage possibilities for anything in your garage that’s hangable. Items like power cords, tools, bikes, and ladders can be hung with all sorts of versatile slatwall accessories, which helps you maintain an organized garage space.
Overhead storage racks
For heavier items, overhead storage racks that utilize your garage’s vertical space are the way to go. Whether you’re storing tires, large storage bins, out-of-season items, or anything else that’s bulky, look for heavy-duty racks that can safely support a lot of weight.
Garage cabinetry is another effective solution for creating more storage space in the garage. Be sure to do your homework, however. Choose a well-made cabinet system that’s built to last and fits your needs, like GL Custom Steel cabinets.
3. Upgrade the garage floor
If you decide to follow just one of these garage improvement strategies, make it a floor upgrade. An attractive garage floor has a bigger impact on the space than you might think.
This type of upgrade is done by applying a floor coating to protect the concrete and provide a clean, consistent look for your garage floor. We recommend Floortex™ polyaspartic floor coatings, which are superior to epoxy floor coatings.
A polyaspartic floor coating offers much better durability and resistance to impacts and abrasions than epoxy coatings. It’s also more resistant to automotive fluids, salt stains, household chemicals, and tire markings. It goes without saying that all of those attributes are incredibly beneficial in a garage space.
Floor coatings that use decorative flakes in their application process, as Floortex™ does, also add a stylish aesthetic to a garage.
4. Boost your curb appeal
Our garage improvement strategies have focussed on your garage interior so far. What about the exterior? Considering the significant profile your garage doors have on your home’s exterior, it makes sense to evaluate them, too.
Older garage doors that are warped, cracked, or have a faded paint job significantly detract from your curb appeal. They also lack the much better insulation features and overall build quality of modern garage doors.
It’s never been easier to customize your garage doors to complement your home’s exterior décor than it is nowadays. Whether you want a classic look with steel or wood garage doors, or the modern aesthetic of full view aluminum garage doors are more to your liking, there’s a door choice to be found that will boost your curb appeal.
5. Push the limits of your garage’s functionality
Any of the above garage improvement strategies will make a huge difference with how your garage looks and functions. You can push things even further, however.
If you don’t have a garage door opener, or your current opener has seen better days, now’s the time to upgrade. Modern garage door openers are quieter and more reliable than the models of the past. Many models also have convenient features like MyQ Technology that lets you monitor and control your garage door from anywhere via a smartphone.
Another way to make your garage more useful is to increase the amount of space you have to park. There’s plenty of great reasons for parking inside a garage and a car lift enables you to do so.
6. Create a multi-purpose garage space
Expanding on the idea of enhancing your garage’s functionality, you can also create a multi-purpose space that lets you use the garage for more than parking and storage.
When it comes to New Year’s resolutions, getting in shape has to be one of the most commonly broken ones. Everyone knows someone (or is someone) who wasted money on a barely used gym membership.
For most of us, exercising is a chore. Having to drive to a gym to do it just gives you one more reason not to go. Take care of two New Year’s resolutions at once by creating a garage fitness room.
You can work out conveniently on your own schedule…and won’t need to wonder if those sweaty exercise machines have been properly cleaned.
Other multi-purpose uses for your garage are to use it for crafting or as a workshop. The garage gives you some privacy and lets you tinker away to your heart’s content. Garage cabinetry can be incorporated into your workshop design to help you get the most out of it.
7. Maintain your transformed garage space
Once your garage space has been transformed, you need to make an effort to maintain it. Luckily, keeping it organized will be easier with some of the suggested storage and organization systems in these garage improvement strategies.
But you’ll reap the biggest benefits from the garage improvements you’ve made by still decluttering and cleaning regularly. Every two or three months should suffice for your garage cleaning needs.
A more thorough cleaning (including washing your garage floor) should be done at least once a year.
Be the envy of your neighbors with these garage improvements
According to a Thompson’s Company study, 52% of homeowners want to own a garage their neighbors envy.
Getting your garage organized is an attainable, worthwhile New Year’s resolution to make. Follow these garage improvement strategies and talk to the trusted professionals at Garage Living to make it happen.
Schedule your free in-home design consultation to get started.
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