The basement is probably one of the most neglected spaces in a home. It often ends up being a catch all for items that are not being used nor have a home in the main living area, but did you know that the basement if organized properly and efficiently can actually become a functional part of your home? Here are some helpful tips to get you started.
Just like with any organizing project the first step is to sort thru what you have and decide what you are keeping, what is trash and what can be donated. This is often the most difficult and longest part of the whole organizing process. As you sort here are some things to think about.
How often do I use this item or better yet when was the last time I used it?
Am I keeping too many of one thing? Do you really need to have 10 pieces of luggage when you only use 2 or how about boxes upon boxes of Christmas decorations?
After you have sorted and purged all your items. Now is the time to take inventory of what you have and start thinking about the type of storage you will need to house the items that are left. I strongly recommend investing in clear heavy plastic totes. Make sure to group like items together and clearly label each bin so you know what’s in them. Always place the label on the side of the bin and not on the lid. Since basements are prone to flooding never ever use cardboards boxes to store items.
Zones and Shelving:
Shelving is critical when it comes to organizing your basement, but before you run out and go hog wild buying them, make sure to do a walk through your basement and decide where you want to install them, remember not everything needs to be stored on shelves some items can be hung up from rafters. Also when determining where to put items, think about how often they are used and store them in such a way that you can get to them easily. To avoid a safety hazard make sure your shelving and items are not too close to the water heater, furnace and so forth. Metal shelving is the best for basements. Not only is it affordable and easy to assemble but they withstand heat and humidity better than wood. They are also less likely to get ruined if your basement floods.
Once you get it organized, in order to keep it that way don’t put items in the basement unless you know that they will be used. Avoid putting things in there to “deal” with later. Later never comes!