Baseboards in the Garage, Did You Know?

1 car garage, markham - hercke upper wall cabinets, punched aluminum wainscoting baseboard

You may not have considered the baseboards inside your garage. Yet, as you will soon see, these baseboards serve very important functions as well as providing an aesthetic touch.

2 car garage, stouffville, pvc garage floor tiles, punched aluminum baseboardFirst, let’s begin with a working definition of baseboards so everyone is on the same page here.  The baseboard is, in its most general sense, the covering over the lowest part of an interior wall.  You may encounter different terms for this wall covering; everything from skirting board, floor molding, or even a mopboard.  In most cases the baseboard is constructed of wood, no matter which name is used. In your garage, you will find the baseboard (if there is one installed) at the bottom end of the walls at the floor level. Typically, the baseboard is from 4” to 6” in height.

The baseboard in your garage serves a couple of functions.  Perhaps the most important function is that of protection. If your baseboard is installed properly, it protects the interior of your garage from foreign invasion.  To understand why this is important, consider how your garage is built.  You have a vertical wall sitting on top of a concrete floor.  The joint (seam) between the wall and the floor is typically 1/16” to 1/8”. 

1 car garage, markham - hercke upper wall cabinets, punched aluminum wainscoting baseboardIf left unsealed, this joint can become a liability.  For example, no matter how small, insects will consider an unsealed floor joint to be an open invitation to come on in.  Also, depending on the exterior structure of your home, an unsealed floor joint could become a source of water getting inside (water intrusion). The answer of course is to make sure this joint is properly sealed.  During a garage flooring makeover, our professional installation team carefully applies a caulking compound to this joint before any baseboard is installed.

Another function of your garage baseboard is aesthetics.  In other words, with a garage flooring makeover, many homeowners choose to finish the floors with a baseboard trim.

Since the typical garage for a new home does not have baseboards installed, a garage renovation project is the perfect time to look at how baseboards will enhance your garage.  When considering new baseboards in your garage there are a few options you will want to keep in mind.  You will notice that your floor has a slight slope.  This slope is required by the building codes used when your home is built.  This slope angles outwards, towards the exterior of your garage for proper drainage. However, a sloping floor means we need to consider the floor slope when applying a new baseboard. 

There are a few options to think about when you plan for your new baseboard.  Not surprisingly, the first choice you have is material.  Do you want to install a wooden baseboard or are you interested in a different material?  For example, some enthusiasts will install punched aluminum (often referred to as diamond plate).  Others choose to install a wooden baseboard, but they request a specific paint color or finish. 

One option you definitely want to keep in mind is continuing the floor covering all the way up the baseboard.  The polyaspartic coating we use here at Nuvo Garage can be applied directly to your new baseboard.  With this option, you are left with a seamless finish from your garage floor all the way up to the top of the baseboard.

One more choice you have with your new baseboard is how you want the baseboard to look along the floor.  In other words, do you want the baseboard to follow the slope of the floor exactly?  Or, would you prefer it to keep it square and level so that your eye doesn’t notice the natural slope of a garage floor?  Also, as hinted at above, there is always the choice for custom baseboard heights.  Some people choose to have their baseboard extended further up the interior wall to meet the slatwall.  Or, some people choose to install punched aluminum wainscoting which reaches waist height.  The advantage of a custom height, especially with the choice of diamond plate is that your interior walls are much better protected from interior damage from errant tools or toys.  If you enjoy washing your vehicles inside the garage, a punched aluminum wainscoting will protect drywall from getting wet.

As you can see, baseboards serve very useful functions in your garage.  Accordingly, if you are looking to makeover your garage, remember to consider your baseboards.

Can you and your garage pass the squeeze test?

Back right 1 car central toronto garage 190x143 before

Is your garage causing you stress?

Back right 1 car central toronto garage 190x143 before

Before left wall 1 car garage nov 2011 190w

Thomas transformation 2 car garage beaches 190x143 slatwall organizers hooks garden tools before

As the season changes, many people find themselves faced with an unappetizing item on their plate, namely the garage and what could have been.  During the warm summer months the very best of intentions were always there.  Yet, somehow the task of organizing, of making sense of all that stuff in the garage never seemed to make it to the top of the to-do list.  This chore kept getting put off to the next weekend, the next available Friday afternoon.  Finally now we find the season change is upon us, and the garage is no better than it was at the start of the season.  The summer ended so much faster than anyone planned on.  Now you may very well feel like you have a monster on your hands. 

To help you come to terms with this, your friendly team here at Nuvo Garage put together a 7 point self-evaluation garage organization quiz.  You can use this quiz to help you figure out where you are and what your best options are at this point.  Relax, no one is going to grade this quiz so this is for your eyes only.  This is just a fun way for you to find out how much you can or cannot squeeze into your garage and whether you experience what we affectionately call Seasonal Garage Anxiety Disorder.

1. Do you feel your blood pressure rising if you pause to consider your garage, the things that need to be moved in, the things that need to be moved out, the things that need to be shuffled around to prepare for the upcoming season?

2. Are you embarrassed to open up your garage door in front of your neighbors for the mess that’s readily visible to anyone that takes a peek inside?

3. If your garage door happens to be open and a friend stops by to chat, do you find yourself apologizing for the mess?

 4. Does your car fit in your garage?  Seriously, if you have a one car garage, will one car fit in there at the same time as all your stuff you have strewn about?  Or, if you have a two car garage, can you comfortably park both cars inside without moving some of your stuff to one corner or the other?  Also, whether it’s a one car or a two car garage, if the car(s) are parked in the garage, can you safely get to your car without stumbling over piles of your stuff?

 5. Do truly know where your stuff is?  If you suddenly need a pair of shears to trim the bushes out front, can you locate them without hunting all over the garage?

 6. Do you actually know how much stuff you really have?  You may be surprised to learn that during organization storage solution installations the team here at Nuvo Garage often surprises homeowners.  These homeowners are shocked and amazed to learn there are duplicate or even triplicate tools such as snow shovels, rakes and the like strewn all over the garage.

 7. How much time would you reckon you spend moving piles of stuff around to get to the tools or materials you are looking for at the moment?

 Well, there are your 7 questions.  There is no real score per se, just a self assessment to help you figure out where you are.  As you might imagine, knowing where you are is the first step to moving forward and making a better choice.  So, take a look back at your answers.  Your answers are a big clue for the next step, which as you might have already guessed is better organization. 

 Of course, you are already aware of the value of a proper storage and organization solution since you’ve made it this far and to the end of the quiz.  Now, one last thing, look back to your answers and ask yourself one final question: Is now the time to take some action and get organized?

Garage Flooring – Prepare & Protect

concrete floor preparation grinder

concrete floor preparation grinderSpring has arrived and we’re looking at everything in a new light.  That includes the garage. Time to pull out the broom and give the floor a much-needed sweep to rid it of the debris collected over the winter. But does that sweep reveal issues that cannot simply be removed with a broom?  Bare concrete floors are prone to cracking over time as well as pitting from the effects of our Canadian climate.  Cement is a natural dust generator.  As often as you sweep, the dust will just keep returning with a vengeance.  Maybe it’s time to look at options for garage flooring?

The big box stores carry various floor coatings and some of my clients have been tempted to go with an inexpensive, do-it-yourself option.  While many of these coatings are fine, the downfall is the concrete floor must be properly prepared in order for the product to adhere well and last.  And unless you have access to a professional floor grinder to smooth out the concrete, you will never achieve a satisfying result.  Coatings applied to floors that are not properly prepared are likely to flake and peel.

Moisture is also an issue. If the moisture in your concrete floor exceeds 70%, any floor coating will be prone to peeling.  And if you choose a rolled rubber or vinyl flooring, you’re creating an environment under the flooring that traps the moisture and it will be constantly dirty and smelly.  The advantage of having a professionally finished garage floor is it is a one-time investment that will last indefinitely.

 

How to choose flooring that’s right for you

1 car garage, toronto - garage flooringFirst, take a look at the state of your cement floor.  If there is excessive cracking and pitting, the holes will have to be filled before a coating can be applied.  In this situation I recommend a pvc tile that will protect the floor while hiding those imperfections.

If you’ve got some minor cracking (most cement floors do), you can choose to go with a coating.  My coating of choice is polyaspartic.  It’s a little more expensive than epoxy but its more durable and far more versatile.  If you’d like one of the baseboard or wainscoting effects we talked about in last month’s blog, polyaspartic is the only way to go.

 

How we make your garage floor beautiful with polyaspartic coating

polyaspartic flooring over stairsFirst we’ll test the moisture level and, if the moisture level is more than 70 per cent, you will need a water barrier.  Then we repair any cracks and grind the floor down to get rid or minor imperfections and open the pores in the cement for proper penetration of the coating.  We’ll also apply a moisture seal if necessary to prevent water from coming through the surface of the floor.  You can then choose from myriad colour choices to complement the rest of the garage. We can even custom mix colours to match other design features.  A base coat is applied and a combination of colour flakes are sprinkled on and left to cure.  We then remove the excess flakes, chip off sharp edges, vacuum and apply a top sealer.  The whole process can be completed in less than a day.  Then all you need to do to maintain it is to clean it with soap and water or hose it down with a power washer a couple of times a year.

If you choose to do just one thing in your garage this season, think about flooring.  It’s an easy fix that makes a big impact.

Custom Fitting

1.5 car garage, etobicoke - overhead platform storage, garage cabinets, slatwall organization system, camlock camlok hooks, polyaspartic floor, cement block coating - after

Off-the-shelf storage products are great as a simple solution to organizing your garage. But custom-built storage can turn your garage into a room with truly functional storage and workspace.

Just because it’s custom-built doesn’t mean it has to be more expensive. Having a storage unit designed specifically to fit an area of your garage often costs no more than buying a read-made product that may not fit as well in the space.

Custom-built is all about creativity and effective use of space. Here are some ideas:

 

Workbenches

Workbench for One Car GarageIf you’re a gardener, car-enthusiast or DIYer, a workbench is a nice addition to any garage. Workbenches can be designed to any size or shape. A workbench that folds up to be stored when you aren’t using it is a great space-saver for small garages.

 

 

 

 Overhead platforms and mezzanines

1 car garage, central toronto - custom attic mezzanine storage areaAs I wrote in my previous blog, overhead storage is a great way to create extra space in garages with high ceilings. It can be as simple as a plywood platform to store seasonal items or as elaborate as a full mezzanine, which allows for another level of storage and workspace.

 

 

Ladders

retractable attic ladder to custom mezzanineLadders or stairs are useful if you have a mezzanine or just need an easy way to access overhead storage. They can be designed to save floor space by pulling down when you need them and retracting out of the way when you’re done.

 

Thule or canoe slings

custom storage overhead of canoes & kayaksThe best place to store canoes, kayaks or Thules is overhead. We build slings out of sturdy foam-covered chain with loop-and-eye hooks to safely and easily hoist these bulky items up and down.

 

 

 

Baseboards

custom platform - finished slatwall sidings, floors, baseboardsHaving a custom-built baseboard in your garage not only looks good, it protects against water leaks and rot.  Wood baseboards allow polyaspartic flooring to wrap up the sides of the drywall.  Stamped aluminium is a great modern, industrial look and provides excellent water protection.

 

 

Custom-built boxes

electrical panel, 3 car garageThere are often unsightly items in the garage that can benefit from being covered up. We’ve built boxes to cover irrigation systems, electrical panels and central vacuum canisters. They can be finished to fit seamlessly into the rest of the garage design.

 

 

Designs for irregular-shaped spaces

1.5 car garage, etobicoke - overhead platform storage, garage cabinets, slatwall organization system, camlock camlok hooks, polyaspartic floor, cement block coating - afterAs mentioned before, garages are rarely standard squares or rectangles. By having something custom-designed and built, you make the best use of all nooks and crannies and odd-shaped corners. When I visit a garage to do a consultation, or often when I’m on the job doing the renovation, I spot areas that would really benefit from a custom-built solution so I’d be happy to make a few suggestions.

 

 

Custom finishing

garage interior design - home stagingFinishes really up the wow factor in any garage renovation. We’ve done everything from finishing slatwall panels in an oak stain, in keeping with the cottage-look of the house, to installing custom wood worktops. We can even custom-mix paint chip colours to make the perfect shade of polyaspartic flooring.

 

Have a look around your garage and see if you have any odd-shaped areas or things you want to change. If you do, a custom-built storage solution is what you’ll want to consider to maximize the storage capability of your garage.

Resolutions / Get Organized

new years resolutions - garage organization

 

Nuvo Year Resolutions

 

It’s a new year and like many people, you’ve probably made, or are considering making, resolutions.  Over the holidays, I did an unscientific survey of my family, friends and associates and confirmed some long-held assumptions – the most common resolutions are joining the gym, quitting smoking, eating better and getting organized.  While the first three are out of my purview, in terms of getting organized, I can offer a lot more than moral support.

 

Thenew years resolutions - garage organization trick behind getting organized is picking a reasonable objective.  Blanket statements like, “I want to organize my life,” can be daunting.  It’s like going to the gym for the first time in two years and insisting on 30 minutes on the Stairmaster.  In theory it might seem like a good idea, but you’ll soon realize incremental steps are the best, and least painful, approach.  That’s why I like projects that are SMAC – specific, measurable, achievable and compatible.

 

When it comes to getting your garage organized, it may seem like a big endeavour, but if you follow my three steps to ideal organization, it’s a lot easier than you think.   And the results of a clean, tidy, organized garage are well worth the effort because it saves time and aggravation in the longrun.

 

1. Get rid of stuff you don’t want or need.

Purging is the hardest part, especially with things you’ve had for a long time. The garage tends to be the dumping ground for things in the house without a real home. Really consider if you need it or are hanging onto it for sentimental reasons. I call this “just in case syndrome.” Remember your objective and ultimate resolution to get organized. When you’re clearing your closets, you don’t want to look at the skirt or jacket that’s been hanging there for the past three years and say, “I might need it.” It’s the same in the garage. Be focused and ruthless.

 

You’ll be amazed how rewarding it is to give old bikes to programs that repair and recycle them, or if you have a variety of stuff, you can save it for a spring garage sale.

 

2. Divide your stuff into manageable chunks.

Separate items by category like gardening supplies, power tools, sporting goods and automotive products.

 

3. Now organize your things according to themes, seasons or the way it’s used, similar to the way you’d group cutlery, dishes, baking accessories and food in the kitchen cupboards and drawers.

Items that only are only accessed once a year like Halloween or Christmas decorations don’t need priority placement in the garage.  Shovels, ice melting products and antifreeze are items you require frequently, so they should be stored in an easy to reach, logical spot.

 

The idea is you shouldn’t have to think a lot when you’re looking for something in the garage or anywhere else.  It should be intuitive.

 

After purging and organizing everything in the garage, you might wonder how the standard four walls and minimal storage options can effectively make a home for everything. With a well-designed garage that’s custom tailored to your lifestyle needs, you’ll be able to sustain your organizing efforts and the garage will no longer be the dumping ground for clutter.

 

So if you’ve resolved to get finally get things organized in 2013, I welcome you to call me for a free in-home consultation on how you can take your garage to the next level.

 

 

Simple and Secure Tire Storage

tire storage solutions - mounted overhead tire storage

 

If you’re like most people, you might be pretending that despite the raked leaves, frosty mornings and occasional dusting of snow, winter is still far away.  Or maybe you’re thinking that given last year’s virtually nonexistent winter and lack of snow, we’re in for the same this year.  Either way, it’s hard to imagine getting excited about the task of hauling out the snow tires and heading to the garage for a changeover.  But if your tires are stored properly and easy to access, this seemingly fraught task is simple.

 tire storage solutions - mounted overhead tire storage

At Nuvo Garage, our garage renovations are designed to maximize storage and organize your belongings efficiently.  Tires require a designated space for safe storage.  Many of our clients opt for wall tire racks, which can accommodate tires with or without rims.  These racks are mounted securely to the wall and ensure that the tires don’t touch the floor putting unnecessary pressure on the rubber.  This configuration is especially practical for people with physical limitations who are unable to lift heavier objects or for people who simply would rather not.  Depending on what other items you want to store and the size of your garage, cabinets are another close-to-the-floor option that also keeps tires out-of-sight for a sleeker look.  These cabinets must be at least 48 inches deep and 30 inches high to fit most tires.

 

For tires without rims, we often suggest overhead storage solutions that also include room for storing heavy-duty floor mats and other out-of-season belongings.  One of our more common installations involves suspending steel racks from the ceiling.  This system is both strong and secure while also being easily accessed by a stepladder when you need take care of the seasonal tire changeover.  It’s also a good option for people with one or two sets of tires. Platforms can support more weight so I often suggest them for clients with multiple vehicles, sets of tires and other automotive accessories.

 

Of course for people with very large garages and a penchant for high-tech storage solutions, we recommend hydraulic lifts.  These sit flat against the wall and lift the tires but since you can’t store items underneath, you’ll need space to accommodate the snow blower, bicycles, garden equipment and any other things that live in the garage.

 

Proper tire storage is easy and doesn’t require a lot of space or expense, just a bit of planning so you can transition effortlessly from season to season.  Make your life easier with a Nuvo Garage transformation.  That way you’ll always know where to find everything when you need it, and in winter you’ll even be able to park your cars in the garage where they belong and save time clearing snow off windshields in the morning. 

 

To ensure minimal disruption, our renovations can be completed in as few as two days.  I’d be happy to come over to discuss options and give you an estimate.

Avoid Seasonal Anxiety Disorder with a Garage Changeover

seasonal garage storage changeover - shovel, snowblower, decorations

 

Spring cleaning has become a tried and true ritual, the ideal time to gather up unwanted things for a garage sale or trash haul. Fall is also a great time of year to consider a sort and purge to transition into winter and ensure your garage is ready to do what it was built for – protect your car from the elements. But for many people, the idea of saying goodbye to summer and getting ready for winter is so off-putting they avoid it. At Nuvo Garage we call this common condition, Seasonal Anxiety Disorder. And the best way to alleviate symptoms is to have an organized garage.

 seasonal garage storage changeover - shovel, snowblower, decorations

For people with existing garage storage solution systems, the time that it takes to do the seasonal changeover is usually less than an hour. The changeover typically involves transferring the items you won’t need for a few months to the back of your garage and the ones you will be using to the front for quick access. Shovels replace rakes, the snow blower gets more prominent placement than the lawnmower and you can stash the pink, bug-eliminating windshield fluid in a cupboard and break out the blue antifreeze. Any sand or ice melting products that keep your stairs, pathways and front sidewalk slip-free get moved to a basket, which is suspended just off the floor near the front of the garage to grab when necessary. Snow tires are removed from overhead platforms or secure floor racks to be replaced with your all-weather tires until the spring. Typically people power-wash the garage in the spring to remove any salt stains from the floor, but a good soap, water and brush cleaning in the fall wouldn’t hurt.

 

If you’ve accumulated stuff that you no longer need, get rid of it. Give it away to a charity, have a garage sale or throw it out. Don’t put yourself in the position that led you to organize your garage in the first place. Purging should be an ongoing activity. It’s impossible to keep everything and keeping things you’ll never use again is a waste of space. For example, when kids get older, strollers get replaced by tricycles, which are replaced by scooters and bikes. Unless you’re planning on having more children, don’t keep the stroller. That’s what Craigslist and Kijiji, or the curb with a “free” sign, are for.

 

However, if the very idea of going into your garage to dig out winter items makes you feel queasy, you might be suffering unnecessarily from a bout of Seasonal Anxiety Disorder. Chaotic garages can be scary, but the problem is easily remedied.  If you’ve never organized your garage, or the last time you did was during the past millennium, the best way to tackle it is to start in reverse. First, you decide what you need to keep, what to donate and what to throw away and then organize your garage to make space for your cars. The process takes planning, time and money, but ultimately will save you valuable time and aggravation each time you realize snow is on the way.

 

You can pretend the good weather will last forever and then cuss and fuss every time you find yourself scraping snow and ice from your windshield in minus 30 degrees. Or you can transform your garage with custom-designed storage solutions that address your personal needs and get into a warm, snow-free vehicle every winter morning.

 

At Nuvo Garage, we’re hoping to eradicate Seasonal Anxiety Disorder so everyone can feel good about getting the garage winter-ready.  If you’re interested in knowing what could be done with your garage, we offer free in-home consultations.

Selling your house? Let your garage help set the stage.

garage interior design - home staging

 

When you’re thinking about putting your house up for sale, you can’t just hang out a For Sale sign, let people stroll through an open house and expect a great offer or incite a bidding war.  Even though the current real estate market is overheated, the trend toward timed offers and increasingly savvy buyers combined with the popularity of interior design and home makeover shows have created new challenges to attract buyers willing to go the distance.

 

garage interior design - home stagingHouses are now staged, often by professional companies that remove your personal effects and replace them with stylish home furnishings and décor.  Home staging, or fluffing as it’s sometimes known in the industry, might also include upgrading flooring, lighting and painting to give your home a fresh, new look.  Since curb appeal is important, it’s not uncommon for agents to suggest some minor landscaping or at the very least putting out a large planter with flowers.

 

Generally speaking, when showing houses, real estate agents don’t spend much time in the garage mainly because they’re usually a mess.  That’s unfortunate since a garage is another asset that adds value to your home.   A clean, tidy garage with well-organized storage provides another feature for agents to point out to their clients.  Not only does it highlight useful storage solutions, it’s also a place to show a home’s personality, utility and suitability for potential buyers.

 

While “garage staging” isn’t an industry standard yet, I have been called in to install slatwall and flooring by a contractor who was finishing a house on the Bridle Path.  In addition to setting up a system for organizing the garage, I supplied bikes, golf clubs, tennis racquets and gardening tools to make it look authentic so that prospective buyers could envision how the space might work for their needs.

 

When you’re considering minor upgrades to make your home market-ready, don’t forget about the garage. It can be so much more than the place to stow packed boxes and Rubbermaid bins before your move and really showcase the flexibility and livability of the house.

 

One of the more popular upgrades we do is creating customized overhead storage shelves. Suspended from the ceiling the shelves create a half storey and increase the storage space footprint for items like snow tires and seasonal decorations that are only accessed once or twice a year.  We can also paint and install slatwall, which can be outfitted with cam lock hooks to hang everything from shovels, rakes and power tools to skis and bikes.  Flooring is another easy option.  Unlike concrete, which soaks up oil and shows other stains, our low-VOC polyaspartic floors don’t absorb liquids and can be washed with soap and water.  Plus, depending on the complexity, the renovation can usually be done in two days.

 

Buyers are critics.  While they’re looking for reasons to buy your house, they’re also considering reasons not to buy it. One way to ensure good reviews is to put everything in its place.  A garage upgrade is a cost effective, efficient way to increase the value of your property before you sell it. 

 

Green your Garage Transformation

insulated garage

insulated garageWhen you’re transforming your garage into the space you’ve always wanted it to be, there can be more to think about than shelving, cabinets and flooring.  Think energy efficiency when thinking about ways to make your garage green.

Many houses have rooms directly above the garage, and if the garage ceiling is not properly insulated,  the room and the room floor can be cold.

There are other ways you can make your garage more environmentally friendly:

Energy efficient lighting

Often a garage was built with just a single bulb.  If you’re planning on doing anything in your garage other than parking your vehicle, this isn’t enough.  As part of a Nuvo Garage transformation, we install fluorescent lighting as an energy efficient solution which also makes your garage a comfortable place to work and maintain.

Paint

Use BEHR paint with less than fifty VOC (Volatile organic compounds) which also have freeze and thaw capability.  And, while an insulated garage is ideal for lower overall home utility costs and more comfortable connecting rooms, if your garage isn’t insulated, this particular paint won’t crack with the weather extremes.          

Flooring

The flooring we use are also green, using low VOC while being mold resistant, easy to clean with a long lasting finish.

Garage doors

Many garage doors and windows let the heat out.  By instalingl energy efficient doors and windows, your heating costs go down and your garage is a more comfortable room to work in.  I refer people to Aurora Overhead Doors, a company that does a great job.

In with the old

If a customer has things that are re-useable, I’ll use them.  One customer had a Rubbermaid cabinet he was happy with, so rather than sell him a new one, we incorporated it into his storage plan.

Insulated light switches and outlets:

Use switches with foam gaskets that insulate and help secure the connection between the house and the garage.

Finishing details

Caulk between the walls and the floor.  Over time and seasons, the connection can expand and contract, leaving gaps where heat can escape.  Caulking improves the insulation factor while providing a pleasant finish to the garage space.

 

 

Seasonal Garage Anxiety Disorder

seasonal garage anxiety disorder

seasonal garage anxiety disorderFor most of us, the garage is likely the largest room in our house.  Our cars are probably our second largest assets.  It makes sense to use this space to house and protect our vehicles.

During spring and summer, however, we leave our cars on the driveway to have easy access to things like lawn mowers, bicycles and gardening tools.

It’s during the first cold snap of the year as we’re putting everything away that we look into our garages and wonder how two cars are going to fit.  Seeing everything that’s filling up the garage, we experience paralysis.  Often, there’s no clear way to start the clean-up process, so it doesn’t get started at all.

I call this Seasonal Garage Anxiety Disorder (SGAD):  All the stuff  is preventing us from using our garages for what they’re meant for and it causes concern.

In the next two blog entries, I’m going to help you cope with your SGAD!  But first, we have to think about motivation:  how badly do you want to get your car in that garage and why?  

If the garage is de-cluttered to make room for vehicles, we can:

  • say goodbye to scraping ice off the windshield before the sun comes up
  • get into a warm car – in the middle of winter
  • worry less about security, especially for those who spend much of the winter down south

One of the main objections to cleaning out a garage is the amount of decision making that has to happen. It requires some tough choices about what to keep and it’s usually a full day’s worth of work.

I’ve encountered garages that were full of furniture – both from parents who have downsized and children who were moving out, seasonal decorations, winter tires, garbage and recycling bins.  Some of the clutter has value, but there is only an emotional attachment to the rest.

The feeling of relief that’s experienced once all the stuff you’re not using is gone, will give a sense of release and freedom necessary to move forward with new activities and projects.

How great would it be to have shelving and storage systems that allowed garden tools, holiday decorations and toys to be found without digging through boxes?  Easy access and storage for seasonal items like paddles, kayaks and canoes and tires?  A discreet space for your garbage bins?

Garage storage systems, whether it’s cabinets, wall organizers, shelving, or a combination, can keep the garage organized all year round.  So when next fall comes, we’re not standing in front of our garage doors, wondering where we’re going to park our cars, we simply drive them in. 

Stay tuned for the next blog:  How to get Started.

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