The Great Outdoors? Tackling Your Garages & Sheds
17 May 2018 | Amanda Manson
Keeping the spaces that you don’t actually ‘live’ in can be harder than you think! Garages, sheds or outside storage units are often overlooked when it comes to organising effectively; it’s too easy to throw in the stuff that ‘might be useful someday’ into those black holes!
Believe me, over the course of time your clutter will build up no end and it could end up being a bit of a struggle to reach those things you now need which are blocked by other items!
So - where to start? Well, once you’ve pulled out and decluttered what you have and are left with the things that you truly do need, you need to work out how to store them.
These spaces tend to be a bit of a moving feast, so I’d suggest the following;
· Store more frequently used items near to your point of access
· Seasonal items can be rotated to the front/back of the area for ease of access (lawnmower in the summer, patio heater/chimenea in the winter)
· Use walls where you can to keep your floor space clear; consider using hooks for long-handled items such as rakes and brushes or for appliances such as hedge trimmers, and even for storing bikes using a heavy-duty hook.
· Select shelving that’s up to the job – for an outside storage unit especially, consider shelving made from wire or galvanised steel instead of wood or purely plastic to avoid rot, warping and bending. A pin board is also very effective for attaching hooks.
· Heavier items should be stored safely on the bottom racks of shelving to avoid top-heavy toppling over and, where possible, it’s best to keep the lowest shelf raised off the floor to avoid potential water damage from extreme rainfall or leaks.
· Don’t forget your roof! There is often room in the apex of a shed or garage roof where you can make the most of that empty space – think lengths of timber or poles that can slide up at the top, lightweight bagged items (dust sheets & rags) that can hang from a height and even bicycles stowed up in the eaves, particularly useful if you’re a fair-weather cyclist who doesn’t need a bike all year round.
· If it makes sense to store items in boxes, go for see-through plastic - preferably with a lid - which will keep things free of dust and damp, plus you’ll be able to see what’s in each one. Always try to label if you can!
· Soft furnishings such as garden chair cushions should ideally be stored in a zip-up or vacuum plastic case to avoid moisture damage and out of direct sunlight to avoid fading.
The real key to having a space work for you, as ever, is habit! Put away what you take out, close packets & lids to avoid spillage and if you should introduce something new into the space, do a spot of re-arranging at the time – don’t leave it for later or you’ll risk not doing it at all!
Thank you to our guest blogger this month: Amanda Manson from Orderly Office & Home (An APDO member).
For more top tips and help organising your life and mind, visit Amandas website here:
Learn more about APDO and find a professional declutterer and organiser near you, here: