Here in New Jersey, our first snowstorm has come and gone and it was pretty epic! Two feet of snow later, we are still digging out and everything is a mess. It can be difficult to keep snow and mud from getting tracked into your home, especially if you enter your home through your garage. But your garage and your house can still be clean and organized. So here’s a few tips for keeping your winter garage organized and you home clean.
- Think of your garage as part of your house and not a dumping ground for dirty or outdoor items. Assess what’s in your garage, what stays in your garage and what sometimes comes into your house, and plan to separate the inside, outside and the “sometimes both” items.
- Add a boot bench with storage, coat hooks and an all-weather floor mat to designate an area where wet shoes and coats are to be left behind before entering the home.
- Avoid storing stuff on the floor. During the winter, water, snow, mud and debris are inevitable in a garage, especially if you keep your car in there. Anything on the floor stands a good chance of getting ruined, so consider shelving, closets or wall racks.
- Speaking of walls, racks are a great option for storing sports equipment like skis, sleds and other outdoor gear. Use the wall space furthest from your house entrance for the wettest stuff, and the closer spaces for coats, hats, scarves and backpacks.
- Don’t’ forget to look up. Often there will be ample ceiling or loft space in a garage that is under-utilized or poorly organized. Roof racks and hanging storage solutions can be mounted directly on your ceiling.
- Keep sand, salt, ice melt, garden soil, seed bags or any of those large bagged items off the ground. Even though they ultimately end up on the ground (outside!), they should be stored in bins or at least on raised platforms or shelves, otherwise they can get easily ruined or make a huge mess on your garage floor. And that means it can get tracked into your house. Ice melt and salt can ruin your carpet, so beware!
Even in the winter, a well-organized garage can provide ample storage for sports gear, seasonal items and decorations, extra shoes and clothing, tools and equipment. With the winter certain to deliver more wet, snowy weather ahead, a well-organized garage ensures the weather stays outside where it belongs and not inside your home.