We all know the stereotype: the garage becomes the Land of Chaos, where things go to accumulate grime and live out of sight, out of mind. You know you have that helpful tool somewhere but finding it might take all afternoon because… it’s in the garage. You squeeze your car in there, shake your head at the mess, and walk inside.
Let’s call an end to that stereotype! Take a stand for cool garage features that create multi-use spaces that make our homes more functional. Ready? Here are some multi-use garage design ideas to get you started.
Step one: Declutter
If you’re going to organize your garage, there’s no point in organizing junk you don’t really want to keep. Set aside a good chunk of time (how long depends on the size of your garage and the scale of your clutter), grab a trash bag, a separate bag or box for things you’d like to sell/donate, and start cleaning. If you haven’t missed it in a year (or three) and it’s covered in a thick layer of dust, you can probably let it go. You’ll be amazed at how much space you suddenly have.
Next: Take everything off the floor
Create even more open space by installing wall shelving or better utilizing the shelves you already have. Dust them off and organize your belongings in a way that makes them accessible and still tucked away. Getting things off the dirty concrete floor will also ensure that your stuff lasts longer. Nobody wants grime caked into their tools or, even worse, the development of rust when things get wet. Sturdy plastic totes are your best friend as garage and basement organizers. They can help keep fragile things protected and bulky things like holiday lights or rope contained and out of the way.
Bonus: Clean and paint your floor, or even add rubber gym tiles. It’ll make your floor easier to keep clean, more attractive, and the entire space more welcoming.
Then divide your garage into zones
If you truly want a multipurpose garage, it’s best to be clear about what those purposes are. For example, you could create a zone for your car, a zone for your workbench and tools, and one for your “toys” — bikes, skis, paddleboards, whatever they may be. Or maybe you’re looking for multi-use garage design ideas. Make space for a mini-office, a nook for you to record podcasts, or space to work out. Maybe you need a “Man Cave” or a “She Shed” where you can pursue your hobbies or go to find respite from the rest of your family. However you slice it, divide up your garage with clear purposes for each area. Then commit to keeping them that way! Don’t park your bike where your car should be, and make sure you put your tools back on their appropriate shelves. You get the gist.
Control the climate to make it comfortable
When most garages are built, they are left uninsulated and often without much ventilation. If that’s the case for you, it might be time for some more significant renovation. Adding insulation is, of course, a big project. Whether that’s the right step for you depends on how much time you want to spend in your garage and what you’ll do there. Installing a couple of windows or even a few vents could make all the difference in keeping the space cooler in the summer. A simple space heater could be enough to keep your garage temps tolerable in the winter. If you’re planning to build a home office, consider partitioning off a section of the garage to install insulation and heaters in just one area.
Are you currently standing in your garage, looking around with a rising sense of despair? Take some pressure off and rent some coworking space while you plan. Good luck with your upcoming renovations to take your garage from chaos to comfortable!