Quoted! Make More of Your Garage Space

By Kathleen Krueger, September 5, 2015

You will seldom find a garage that serves only as a shelter for vehicles. Our garages often serve as storage areas for lawn care equipment, sports equipment, gardening supplies and any excess items that haven’t found a spot inside the home. In addition, your garage is often used as a work area and includes the various hand and power tools you use on your projects, whether vehicle related or not. Some of our garages have gotten so filled with other ‘stuff’ that we don’t even have room for our vehicles any more.

Do you need to get rid of the things filling your garage? Should you rent a storage unit to keep it in? Both of those suggestions may have some merit, depending on your particular situation. Before you go to either of those extremes, why not just try making better use of the garage space you have? Organizational experts like Angelica Holiday from Organize Rescue have found that often times the issue isn’t too much stuff. Many homeowners just need to learn how utilize their storage space better, to make it more efficient.

Develop Storage Zones

Holiday suggests by creating zones for storing related items. This helps to maintain an organizational system. Everyone can quickly learn that all the sporting equipment can be found in one area of the garage and that is the same area it should be returned to. Lawn and garden tools and supplies are kept in another area. Occasional use items like holiday decorations and that big roaster you only use for large family gatherings can be kept in another area.

Get It Off the Floor

You generally are limited on floor space in a garage. They are designed to fit vehicles and allow for space to open doors, but don’t always have a lot of extra floor space on either side. If you do have some extra floor space, it will generally be along the wall that is opposite the overhead door. The solution, of course, is to use wall space for your storage areas.

“Hooks and hangers are a plenty at hardware stores,” Holiday reminds us. “Overhead storage bins are a super place for things you don’t have to get to on a regular basis.”

Hang bikes and sporting items on the walls. Garden tools can be kept neat and easily accessible in the same way. Pegboard has been the go-to item for tool organization for decades. Everything has its place and is easy to find at the same time. Add labels or draw a silhouette around each tool to be sure that each item gets returned to its designated spot.

Shelves placed high up on the end wall will work perfect for bins filled with holiday decorations, craft supplies, the tent and sleeping bags. Anything that doesn’t need to be accessed frequently and isn’t too heavy. Label the outside of your bins with large lettering so it is easy to determine what is in each one without taking it down and opening it. Using clear bins can also help solve the problem of identification.

For those smaller things and items you might want locked away, narrow cabinets can be placed below the shelves with a work counter on top. Keep fasteners, paints and hand tools put away and out of site.

It just takes a little thoughtful planning, and you will find that you have a lot more storage space available in your garage than you realize. Plus, plenty of room to park your vehicles too.

http://www.selfstoragefinders.com/blog/2015/09/05/organization-tips-make-more-of-your-garage-space/

Quoted! Make More of Your Garage Space

Quoted! How to Move in with Your Parents

There are a litany of questions that need to be resolved when one decides to move back in with their parents. A lot of whys are asked, but the biggest question should be, where can I fit all my stuff?

Moving back in with family after college could be relatively easy, furniture easily given away, a dorm room or shared apartments worth of belongings could slide back into an old room or basement, taking minimal space away from the garage—this is, perhaps, the easiest point of reentry into a parental abode. Not so true once we get older.

What to Do With All Your Stuff

A friend went through this problem himself. He had a house full of furniture and collectibles when he went to move back in with his parents: a house already filled with collectibles and furniture, much of it antiques, and most of it much nicer than what he owned. With the exception of his television, not one of his belongings was going to replace his parent’s things, and there was no basement.

He still had yearbooks and baseball cards, knickknacks that ranged from fossilized bones to Smokey the Bear propaganda, thrift-store globes and maps, and too many full bookshelves. He knew he had to downsize his life, but what to keep, what to pack up and store, and what to sell or donate were not easy decisions.

Ginny Underwood, Professional Organizer and owner of Virginia’s Easy Living Solutions offers good advice for anyone facing these decisions. Rent a storage unit is her first tip. Secondly, she advises you to only take the furniture and kitchen items that your parents don’t already have available for your use.

Temporary Storage

My friend followed that advice. He sold or gave away much of his furniture, but when it came to his vinyl collections, books, Nintendo games, clocks and comics, his biggest decisions revolved around what he needed day-to-day access to and what criteria makes a good storage facility for the rest.

His top criteria for choosing a storage facility involved price, location and reviews. He looked for complaints about leaks and how often the storage facility had been robbed. Price checks are easy nowadays as many storage companies advertise their price on web pages, but he still made some phone calls just to be sure. For him, having his storage close and having his material things accessible was more important than a $5-$20 difference in price. He chose a facility a mile down the street for that reason.

Maintaining a Healthy Relationship

Dealing with your physical possessions is really the easiest part of moving in with parents after you’ve already began your life as an adult. Keeping your relationship intact while sharing their house can be the bigger challenge.

R-e-s-p-e-c-t is the theme of this endeavor,” advises Angelica Holiday, owner of Organize Rescue. ”Both the parents and adult kids have to have lots of this, combined with patience.” She goes on to suggest that you avoid monopolizing the common areas, to be mindful of your parents patterns and recognize that there are times when it would be best to retreat to your room. “Helping out is another area of value,” Angelica says. “Adult children should be looking to financially contribute to the household so no resentments build up.”

The important thing about moving in with parents is to make yourself comfortable with what can be an uncomfortable situation. You don’t want to live with boxes stacked to the ceiling in a depressing maze of a room. Figure out what belongings are really worth keeping, get rid of anything unwanted, unused, or broken, then do some quick Google searches to find the most secure and affordable storage space you can. And keep the yearbooks—your senior picture is hilarious!

By Kathleen Krueger

http://www.selfstoragefinders.com/blog/2015/08/08/how-to-move-in-with-your-parents-2/?utm_campaign=coschedule&utm_source=facebook_page&utm_medium=Self+Storage+Finders&utm_content=How+To+Move+In+With+Your+Parents

Quoted! How to Move in with Your Parents

Another quote! Need a Bigger Food Pantry? Storage Units Could Be the Answer.

by Kathleen Krueger for www.selfstoragefinders.com

June 20, 2015

The affordable extra space available through self-storage units is being used to accommodate all kinds of lifestyle needs. Why rent or buy a larger house or apartment when you all you need is extra closets or garage footage? With a little creative thinking, you can come up with all kinds of different ways to utilize the space of a storage unit.

One of newest and most practical ideas has been to use part or all of a storage unit as a food pantry. Storage units can allow a family to purchase in bulk or to store food preserved through home canning, even when there is a shortage of storage space in your apartment or home.

Organizing Your Food Pantry

Whether your food pantry is in a storage unit or in your home, developing a simple organization system will help you to find what you need when you need. Since many food items also have expiration dates, proper organization can also ensure that those items closest to expiration get used first.

Angelica Holiday, owner of Organize Rescue, suggests creating an inventory list of the food items you have stored in your storage unit. “Keep an inventory of your supply and dates you canned them. Use it to avoid planning to use something that you may have already depleted and spoilage due to expiration. Every time you use something, mark it off your list.”

There are several storage services which now offer easy to use apps for tracking your items in storage along with their pickup and delivery service. Seattle-based Storrage is one company providing their customers with inventory apps. Clutter, which currently serves Los Angeles and Orange counties, also provides customers with an online visual inventory. Both these companies also provide pickup and delivery of your stored items, meaning you never have to visit the storage facility yourself.

Home-canned Food Storage

If the foods you will be storing in your storage unit are foods that you’ve canned yourself, there are few items to keep in mind depending on your location and climate. Since home-canned goods are packed in glass jars, temperature and stability are factors to consider. “A temperature-controlled environment will protect your canned goods from freezing in cold climates and getting to warm in hotter climates.” Holiday says. If you live in an area where earthquake tremors are frequent, glass jars set on open shelving (either at home or in your storage unit) could result in horrific mess. Make sure your jars are stored in such a way that only get shaken and not shattered.

If you’re just beginning your journey into home canning, it is important that you are aware of how to can safely and recognize when a jar of food may have not sealed properly or is spoiling for any reason. Freshpreserving.com provides answers to the most frequently asked questions regarding home canning safety. Here are some of their tips:

Leave the recommended amount of headspace in your jars between the food and the lid. Too much or too little headspace can prevent your jar lid from sealing properly.
Storage temperature for canned goods should remain under 70 degrees Fahrenheit. Higher temperatures can decrease the nutritional value in your foods.

Store your canned foods away from direct sunlight. Light can cause your foods to fade in color and destroy certain vitamins.
A temperature controlled storage unit provides the ideal environment for food pantry storage units. It is dark and dry. Keeping your food at a constant temperature between 50 and 70 degrees will also preserve them longer than if kept in a place where temperatures fluctuate above and below that range.

Another quote! Need a Bigger Food Pantry? Storage Units Could Be the Answer.

Garage Storage Tips: Organize and Declutter

Homeclick Community added by Kathleen Krueger

Professional organizers offer tips on how to prevent overwhelm when you use your garage for storage space.

The job of a garage is, first and foremost, to be a safe storage area for the family vehicles. However, the average garage provides more than one function for homeowners. In most cases, the garage is a storage area for many other things as well. When fitting your vehicles into the garage becomes a challenge or absolutely impossible, it’s time to declutter and reorganize your garage.

Declutter First
Dani Perea, from BrightNest.com, a leading source of advice for homeowners, offers this advice on how to begin the decluttering process: “Keep your garage’s job in mind as you clear clutter and organize. Anything that doesn’t fit its job should go in a “put away (somewhere else)” pile or a throw away or donate pile.”

Just because something is currently stored in your garage, doesn’t mean it has to stay there or that the garage is the best place to store it. Seasonal items can be stored in a separate garden shed or a self-storage unit and retrieved when needed.

Perea also provides this savvy tip – ”Never buy bins before you declutter – or you’ll have less motivation to actually get rid of items with a nice new empty bin in front of you.” If you do buy bins for garage storage, organizers generally recommend that you purchase clear plastic bins. This allows you to see what is stored inside without having to open the bin.

[More Decluttering Tips: 4 Steps to a Clutter-Free Home]

Storage Time
Now that you’ve decluttered and determined which items really should be stored in your garage, its time to get organized. Angelica Holiday a professional organizer and owner of Organize Rescue suggest creating zones for similar items.

“Place all sporting equipment in one zone. Lawn care and tools make a nice pairing in another zone.”

You’ve decluttered and sorted your items, now it’s time to decide how to create garage storage areas that are both accessible and fitting for the types of items you are storing. Holiday offers this advice: “I say “UP” with it all. Hang as many things as you can from the ceiling and on the walls.”

Perea gets even more specific, “If most of the items in your garage are sports related, then opt for metal shelving and hanging hooks rather than large boxes (which easily become clutter traps). If your ‘keep’ items are mostly tools – a pegboard and hooks will hold tools, and won’t take up as much space as clutter-friendly shelves.”

Keep safety in mind as you determine storage areas for items. “Always store substances like paint, pesticides and auto fluids in their original containers,” Perea reminds us. “If the containers are damaged at all, get rid of them. If you have pets or children, make sure that containers of toxic substances are high and far out of reach.”

For a truly clutter-free look in your garage, invest in storage cabinets that hide your tools and other smaller items behind sleek doors. Select cabinets that mount on the wall to protect them from floor moisture that could cause damage.

Another reason to choose cabinet storage in the garage is to add another layer of safety and security. Cabinets can have locks to keep children from accessing dangerous power tools and toxic substances. Locked cabinets also add a further deterrent to those who would like to take your tools without your permission.

A final word from professional organizer Angelica Holiday is a good one to keep in mind: “Garages are for parking cars, not packing in so many things you can’t move.”

Garage Storage Tips: Organize and Declutter

Tips for organizing on a budget: Organizing on a budget

Quoted on the Sparefoot Blog!

http://blog.sparefoot.com/7891-cheap-organizing-solutions/

Tidy and Thrifty: How to Get Organized on the Cheap
BY CYNTHIA J. DRAKE JUNE 5, 2015

That brimming closet. The junk-filled garage that no longer accommodates your car. The basement where you’ve got to clear a path to get to your holiday decorations.
Who couldn’t use a little organization, right? But when you’re on a budget, fancy tools for organization and storage might not be wallet-friendly.
Don’t sweat it. We challenged organizing experts to come up with some creative solutions that you can carry out right away—and that won’t cost you an arm and a leg.
Stress-free sorting tips

“Sort everything—and I mean everything—into piles: definitely keep; move to another location for a definite purpose; give away/sell (and then do it), repair/clean/alter (and then do it, or else it goes in the next pile); and recycle/throw away.” — Kirsten B. Feldman, author

“Set a timer for 20 minutes. Tackle one section of the space you’re trying to organize. When the timer goes off, you’re done for the day. Yay! Once a day, repeat the process. After a few sessions, you’ll be organized. Plus, doing your organizing in small chunks makes it easier to find a place for those wayward items, instead of ending up with a large pile that begs for a trip to The Container Store.” — Dani Perea, growth and engagement manager, BrightNest

“Use painter’s tape to mark out sections on a floor or tarp for sorting categories. You can also use it to label boxes and tape the protective cushioning you may put on a fragile item. If you invest in a couple of different colors or widths, it can be used for an informal coding system for your items.” — Lauren Williams, owner, Organizer2Harmonize

“Group like items together—for example, photos in white frames or sea shells you’ve brought home from the beach—so they have impact and avoid looking like clutter.” — Kirsten B. Feldman

“Get a friend or neighbor to help you if you can’t afford a pro to help you.” — Denise Baron, home and lifestyle expert
Turning clutter into cash

“The first and most profitable way to declutter is always to sell something. Almost every area in the country now has Craigslist, but you can get better prices if you have a local ‘yard sale’ website or Facebook group. Bookoo.com is the largest site behind Craigslist for this type of listing.” — Paul Moyer, owner, SavingFreak.com

“Monetize the process as much as possible by donating for a tax credit or somehow selling what you can. It’s not likely that you’ll get back as much as you spent on the items, but you will get back more than just sending the items to the landfill.” — Lauren Williams
Cheap or free storage solutions

“Before you buy expensive organizers and containers, shop your home first. Think outside the box and use what you have to organize. For example, an ice tray or an egg carton can be used to organize jewelry inside a drawer.” — Dianne de Las Casas, Once Upon A Storage

“Reuse old baking pans in the garage to hold tools or repair items. For example, use an old baking pan to hold the chalking and grout tubes on the paint shelf in the garage. A loaf pan is the perfect size for rolls of tape. Repurpose an old CD cabinet into toilet paper storage inside the bathroom.” — Karen Lankford

“Small to medium-size baby-wipe containers make great holders of many things. I have them lined up in the junk drawer to catch extra pens and mini note pads, rubber bands and batteries. They are great in the craft room and garage, too.” — Angelica Holiday, owner, Organize Rescue

“Over-the-door shoe racks or other types of clear organizers can hold household cleaners, tools, jewelry, makeup and many other items. Don’t be afraid to get creative and repurpose what you already have!” — Alison Kero, owner, ACK! Organizing

“Use recycled clear containers to store your dried ingredients in for your pantry. Make certain to label them with the name of the contents and the use by date.” — Angelica Holiday
“Hooks are useful for hanging purses, keys, towels, pots and pans and many other household items so they’re easy to see and reach.” — Alison Kero

“Use command hooks on the sidewalls of the cabinet under your bathroom sink to hold less-often-used beauty tools. A single nail and a potato chip clip mounted to the wall can hold reusable plastic storage bags.” — Karen Lankford

“Visit your local dollar store and look at all of the organizing options. They carry foldable cubes, plastic storage bins, over-the-door shoe bag hangers, inside-drawer organizers, chalkboard labels, office supplies and so many more items that can be used to organize a chaotic space.” — Dianne de Las Casas

“Shoeboxes make wonderful socks, underwear and pantyhose organizers to use in your drawers.” — Alison Kero
Maintaining your clutter-free house

“Don’t purchase in bulk unless you have a large family to buy for. Those 20 jars of tomato sauce that you got at a bargain are no longer a bargain when you have to throw them out after they’ve expired and you forgot you had them. The only products that we purchase in bulk in my home are toilet paper, paper towels and tissues.” — Eileen Bergman, professional organizer

“The ‘just in case’ rule—if you say it’s ‘just in case’ and it’s been two years since you used it or wore it—then it has to go.” — Denise Baron

“Use free apps to help reduce clutter. Get rid of paper clutter by scanning your documents and uploading them to Evernote. Use BrightNest to get cleaning and organization tips on your phone. And download Closet for iPhone for organizing your clothes.” — Dani Perea

Tips for organizing on a budget: Organizing on a budget

Putting Christmas Away

So it’s time to take down Christmas and put the exterior and interior decorations away.

As for the exterior decorations, there are some companies that will offer to put the decorations up and take them down. If you contract  for them to do both you may get a discount. If the company you are using  doesn’t advertise to do so, ask. They may not have thought of offering the  service. You boost there business and you don’t have to deal with the hassle.

Indoor decorations can be taken down and tidied up with the following  suggestions.

1. Ornaments: Pack delicate and family heirlooms in acid free tissue paper  (available at craft stores), paper towels, large paper napkins or small bubble  wrap. For those extra special ornaments consider plastic, acrylic or card  board boxes (available at craft stores). In the winter season stores like Costco  and Sam’s Club offer apples in clear plastic trays. Save them and store  ornaments in the perfect apple size impressions and ornament size containers.

2. Strands of garland and tinsel: Save the clear plastic zip bags that comforters,  pillows, sheet sets and pillow cases come in. Depending on the quantity, large  zip lock bags and space bags do the trick too. The contents become perfectly  packed when all the air is vacuumed out. They are great for these flexible  decorations.  A super way to take the stress off of the activity is to invite friends and family  over for a party and celebrate the end of the season. You will be surprised how people are willing to lend a helping hand if you provide a yummy meal and great conversation. Tell stories about your holiday season, share pictures and ask  everyone about their new year’s resolutions. The time will be merry and the task  quicker to get done. When all the decorations are down, put them in clear plastic storage containers in a safe, weather proof attic, basement, garage, under the stairs or in your storage unit. Make certain to keep them all together so you don’t have to go scurrying around looking for all the bits and pieces.

My name is Angelica Holiday and my company is called Organize Rescue. I am a motivated organizer that helps people with everyday organizing challenges, organizes people’s moves and provides wardrobing services. My  expertise also includes when it’s time for Mom and Dad to go to a care home,  downsizing of all kinds and hoarders.

Putting Christmas Away

It’s raining, start organizing! A lot or a little.

It’s raining and your stuck inside. Today is the day to take steps to organize. Here are some steps and stages for tackling those dreaded projects that in the end will make you very happy.

1. Make a list of the projects at hand. Make sure to put the tasks that will take to the most time at the end of the list. Separate each task into steps. For example: Clean the garage. Getting clear storage containers would be a good start even if you put nothing in them today. Keep breaking down the projects into smaller doable actions so when you do something you have won a small battle while still working on the war.

Estimate how much time each task will take so that when you revisit the list you will be able to identify what you have time to actually do and can choose accordingly. I may have several projects going, but I always have steps that I can chew on without loosing sight of the bigger picture..

2. You have a list and you want to choose something you can accomplish within the time you have. Maybe you don’t have the whole day to commit, so gratify yourself with a patchwork of timed efforts that will begin to gain ground in each case. You have to go get the clear plastic storage containers, well while you are out, pick up a labeler for the library project that will require sorting the articles in the big box. See, 2 things done and you are on your way to starting two of the agendas.

3. Each time you start a step be mindful that you will be revisiting the overall project many times. I find myself marveling at how well I paid attention to details in my last session and how much it was helping me to progress in the current go. As you accomplish these measured steps, you will find it getting easier and easier. Give yourself a pat on the back each time to open up the case to work on it again and cheer that the efforts of your past attention has paid it forward when you resume.

4. Go easy on yourself if you choose to change directions. Sometimes when when we get stuck in, we realize that we made a misstep in either our planning efforts. If you have to take something apart or start over, be glad you caught the “oops” now than further down the line. You will be glad you did. Have patience. Be kind to yourself and know that that little detour is a way to look at things again and start fresh.

5. Corral your tools and supplies for each project so that you are not running around looking for the essentials for the project. Gather scissors, markers, tape, stapler and all the implements together first so you don’t have to stop what you are doing to go fetch them. If the project is going to spread out over time, make a list of these goodies so you don’t busy your mind with the running around again. When you are through with each action, return them to their proper homes, your organized desk, kitchen drawer or craft room for easy access the next time you are going to work.

Having these helpful tips will certainly make the beginning and continuing to organize faster and easier. You will thank yourself and me for doing things that rocket your through your list into appreciation of your hard work. Whether its raining or sunny where you are, get going.

It’s raining, start organizing! A lot or a little.