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Tips for Garage Organization

2020 has certainly taught us the value of our space - for better or for worse. As quarantine set in and the walls became a little closer and the delivery boxes piled higher, the valuable real estate in the garage became precious. For many the garage tends to act as a collection and storage unit which is great, but the garage is indeed intended for parking vehicles. Don't endure another winter parking the car outside the comfort of the garage.

Below are some simple tips to support your project of reclaiming the garage in a way that will last with limited maintenance year after year. Just like our doors, we want you to enjoy life in a low-maintenance, quality way.

Sort and redistribute:
At first glance, it likely looks daunting to have piles and collections of your life and lifestyle accumulating in the garage, but as with all things large, take it one step at a time. Consider this an opportunity to move the overwhelm of your garage out once and for all. Take a deep breath and begin to address all items in the garage with a new set of eyes. For this phase, you will organize by value by assigning the item in one of three categories:

Discard:

Remove the riff-raff. Yes - you have riff-raff. Identify trash and recycling and remove it immediately. The added space will be rewarding and allow for additional organizing. Let it go!

Donate (or sell):

We know you love the bikes your three kids first learned to pedal a bike on, but do you need to keep them? It is likely your garage is full of items you love that you will never again use. Find a local charity to donate or try your hand at selling independently. The key here is to follow through. Don't decide to sell your items and never take the time to list them. The object is to create more space for you today. If you aren't using it and others will, let it go.

Displace:

Is the garage storing family keepsakes that may be best stored in the attic? Do you have items you borrowed from a neighbor and neglected to return? Where all of this remains is up to you. Just because you CAN store it in the garage doesn't mean it belongs there. Let it go!

Are you singing Frozen now, too? Keep singing and know that the cold is upon us, and this effort will be worth it!

Cluster
Now that the floor of the garage can be seen, it is time to sort and organize by category and purpose. Identify items that are similar and different, and then physically pick them up and put them with items that fulfil the same purpose or require a particular storage need.

For example, it would be helpful to cluster chemicals away from paints and lawn/garden tools away from children's sports equipment. Consider each cluster with a lense of safety first and then purpose second. Let your lifestyle and demands drive the organizing.

This phase is key to sustainability. Get this right, and you get the next step right which leads to a plan that will work year after year.

Visualize
Create your vision - the one where you are moving and functioning in your garage with ease. Consider which categories need to be most accessible to the door of the home and which would have less need for easy access. There are many things here to consider. Some people love to keep garbage bin right by the door for easy access while others want to keep any aromas farther away. Does your garage vision allow the car(s) to enter easily and move in and out of the doors? Be sure there is space for safety and comfort. For those with kids, considering how they will access each item is critical. Putting a toy too high for them to reach leaves the item unused or causes more work for you, so strategy ahead of time allows for peace of mind later!
The old adage in the building industry is 'measure twice and cut once". This is very important at this phase. Take clear and comprehensive measurements of the space and the demand of your clustered items. Measure to be sure your concepts will fit and take good notes to be sure you get the right materials.

Implement
Using the measurements and visualized plan, identify the needed components for the storage systems. Our Pinterest page has a lot of ideas for garage organization on this link. From freestanding storage shelves that will evolve with you over time to mounted storage shelves that allow you so many opportunities and configurations to storage bins that seem to make any mess manageable, your solutions are out there.

We know it is fun to go shopping, and we hope you enjoy it, but be sure to choose items that you can maintain the vision. It is our experience that building smart systems around business and life allow for sustainability and satisfaction. For example, if you collect muddy shoes in a bin, you might select a container without a lid to allow your family to simply toss them in without effort. If there is a lid, the muddy shoes may not make it in.

Once you have identified the needed storage supplies. It may be necessary to schedule time to make this happen because being busy seems to be a way of life. Now that the hard work has been done, the fun can happen. Set up your shelves and systems and bring your organized garage to life.


Protect
Once you have brought this project to its close, be sure that you have the right door(s) to protect your possessions. Weather tight seals will keep out the elements and unwanted little visitors (critters). Insulated sections will offer not only support for climate controlled garages but also reduce noise going in and coming out. R-value helps to manage the balance of the garage's environment.

Why Fimbel
All of this points to a Fimbel door. Fimbel is about sustainability. From the materials we choose to the culture we create to the operations that guide our practices, we want to bring you quality that endures for the next generation. We run on solar and plant a tree for every door sold, so we know are dedicated to making life work for all. All Fimbel products come fully insulated with offerings for insulated glass packages to help control temperature and noise. If you would like to request a sample sent right to your home, please follow this link to get connected!

Find a dealer near you to learn more about our incredible garage doors! 

For more tips and tricks, check out the gems in "The Ultimate Garage Storage Guide" our friends at Porch.com.

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