In an ideal world we would neatly store our cars in the garage and keep all other belongings in a storeroom, shed or workshop, but the reality is our garages are used for much more than keeping the cars cool.
Why We Use the Garage
When you are taking items in and out of the car, it suits you to leave them in the garage. You don’t want to walk the folding chairs through the house each weekend on the way to the kids' sport when you can store them right beside the car boot.
Lack of other Storage Space
Some housing estates don’t allow new homeowners to install garden sheds in the backyard while the covenant period is in place, so they have no other option but to use the garage.
So Much Gear
The average Perth household now has far more items for fewer occupants than a house from 50 years ago. While house size has grown to accommodate everything, our block sizes have shrunk. We use the backyard as outdoor living and entertaining spaces that we don’t want to clutter up with our messy belongings so we store them in the garage where they can only be seen when the door is up.
Make Best Use of the Space
It’s tempting to use every square inch of space but try to keep some distance around the cars so you don't damage the paintwork. You also want to be able to get out of the car without fear of tripping over anything.
Plan it Out
Once you have lived in your home for a while, you will know what needs to be stored in the garage and what doesn’t. Take the time to decide what items will work in which areas. Start with the bulky items like the second fridge because you need space to open the door and access to power. Other items that take up a large amount of room can go near the smallest car leaving more space around the larger car.
Once the cars are in the most available space in a garage is the walls. There is a multitude of different hooks available for storing all kinds of items from the garden rake to a bike and wave ski. Plan out what items are ideal to be hung up and where. Hold up the item to check it won’t obstruct people walking past or cause an injury before you attach the hooks.
For smaller items, you can use shelving units that have small depths and will fit neatly between columns. The metal units are easy to assemble and can take a surprising amount of weight. Shelves allow you to move items off the floor and increase your storage space.
If you need a more customised solution, you can make a relatively cheap shelving unit out of timber and plywood that perfectly fits the space available.
If you want to store expensive tools but you like to be able to leave the garage door open when you are working outside, look at installing a lockable cupboard.
If you have things that you can’t hang or place on a shelf look at installing some custom storage. Sporting goods like the kids’ basketballs can be stored in a net, so they aren’t rolling around the garage causing a hazard.
You want to be able to easily sweep or vacuum the garage floor without spending half a day taking everything out and putting it back in.
Have a look at what friends and family use for storage options. Visit discount stores to see what containers you can pick up cheaply that will still look good when the contents of your garage are on display to the neighbours.
There are plenty of ideas available to you on YouTube. Search for ‘garage storage ideas’, and you are bound to find a few ideas that will work for your garage and lifestyle.