4 Steps to an Easy Garage Cleanout
A garage can be a dumping ground for clutter. Household junk always ends up finding its way out there. From old holiday decorations that don’t work anymore to that drum set you played twice while going through your “rocker phase”, your garage probably contains some unused junk.
The litmus test for whether you have a little garage junk or a lot of garage junk is this: can you still park your car in your garage? If you said yes, you’re not doing too bad. Set aside a weekend afternoon and you should be able to get it all cleaned up and organized. If you said no, set aside the whole weekend! Lets get started with the 4 steps to cleaning the junk out of your garage.
1. Move the garage junk to the driveway.
Your garage cleanout has to start somewhere and this will give you a clear picture of the task at hand. Separate the items you removed into two piles, one “keeper” pile and one “discard” pile. I advise recruiting the whole family for help, not just for the extra hands, but you will want input on the discard pile. You don’t want to upset your spouse or kids by pitching something important to them. Make one pile on one side of the driveway and the other pile on the other side.
2. Clean the garage floor
Give yourself a clean slate to work with. Its not everyday you can see your entire garage floor. Take advantage. Once everything is out of the garage, sweep and wash the garage floor.
The keeper pile should go back in the garage in an organized fashion. Buy or build some shelving or cabinets to help. Big box hardware stores sell all kinds of heavier duty racking systems and cabinets for garages. I always suggest cabinets instead of shelves when possible, especially if you have a lot of seasonal items stored in the garage. This way you don’t have to “see” the clutter year round. It will be much more aesthetically pleasing and harder to just “throw” something on the shelf. As we all know, that is how clutter gets started and before you know it you’ll have to do another garage cleanout.
4. Disposing of the Garage Junk
The remaining pile on the driveway will most likely be a combination of two types of “junk”. There will be actual junk which needs to be discarded and then there will be items you don’t use anymore but wouldn’t be considered trash. There are several different ways, or combination of ways to get rid of this pile. We will rank them in order from the easiest (slightly more expensive) to the more hands on (least expensive).
Call a junk removal company and be done with it. A junk removal company will come with a cost but will also come with speed and convenience. They will remove the entire pile at once and get it out of your hair. Don’t worry about the good items being thrown out, any reputable junk removal company will make sure the good items find a second home. The rest will be recycled and disposed of properly.
Call a local charity and donate your nicer items. A good local charity will have a pick up service or at least a drop off location for your good items. If there is still a fair amount of junk left over after donating as much as you can, call a junk removal company to pick up the rest. This will lower your cost for the junk removal service.
Have a garage sale and then, if needed, call a junk removal company. If you have the time and desire a garage sale is a great way to find a home for the good items. In addition you will make a few bucks and maybe meet some neighbors. This way you will have found a home for some of the material, reduced the volume of junk needed to be picked up, and made some money!
So roll up those sleeves and let your garage be a garage once more. A place for cars, the kids bikes, and a fridge full of beer. Or soda. Or wine coolers. Whatever you want, it’s your space again.