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It’s summertime! Other than outdoor activities, like going to the beach or the pool, hiking, and long drives with the family, there are indoor pursuits you can do too. You can take this time to clean and organize storage spaces, such as your basement, attic, or garage. It may seem like an arduous undertaking (and it can be), but it can be a fun and rewarding bonding activity if you rope in your family.


What’s more, taking the time to organize your storage can make it easier to find things later. That applies to Christmas furnishings and decor for other holidays. Arranging storage can give you more space for, well, more storage! Or you can make the freed-up areas more functional.


That said, here are tips for cleaning and cleverly organizing your storage areas.


Use Transparent Boxes


A common mistake when organizing is using dark-colored or solid-colored storage boxes. While they may fit your aesthetic, they can be bothersome when you are looking for something. Even if you have labels, you may still have to open up the boxes to make sure they contain what you are looking for. And that can only create more messes.


To avoid that, invest in transparent boxes instead. This way, you can easily see the contents, and there would be no need to upturn boxes and their insides to seek something. Doing this is a real time-saver too. Time spent going through things can be invested toward family, study, or much-needed me-time. Plus, these plastic containers work for all kinds of items.


Practice Labeling


Yes, you can see inside your transparent boxes. But labels still help, especially if you arrange your storage boxes according to categories or alphabetically. No need to splurge on fancy label makers for this—spare paper, a marker, and a roll of tape should suffice. If you prefer, you can get some inexpensive sticky labels too.


Create Inventory Lists


What is the point of labels and transparent boxes if you still need to write inventory lists of the contents of boxes? The answer is simple: it saves time and effort looking for things. This practice is beneficial when you have plenty of baubles or paraphernalia that can get lost easily. Doing this can aid you in keeping track of things that are important to you and other family members, especially those with sentimental value.


Make Use of Pegboards and Hooks


Install pegboards in the garage, woodshed, or any part of the house, including bedrooms. These are handy for organizing power tools and equipment, arts and crafts supplies, and certain items that are better off hanging. Pegboards free up floor space and give you more room to walk around in or work with. This makes rooms safer, too, as sharp tools are tucked or hung safely rather than lying around.


Utility hooks can make pegboards more useful since you can use them to hang cleaning supplies, such as brooms, mops, and dustpans. Hooks let you reach for cleaning tools quickly when dust needs to be swept away.


Utilize Small Spaces


That space below the stairs? That empty nook in the attic? Prime storage areas! Small spaces like these are often neglected, and many don’t know what to do with them most of the time. If you like zen, then you can leave those alone. However, they can help organize and store things you do not use often but may need from time to time. That would include cleaning supplies, special dinnerware, tea sets, and the like.


They can also work for your Christmas trees. To keep them sprightly for the next round of December holidays, use convenient upright tree storage bags. These keep dust and dirt away from your artificial trees, ensuring that they are ready for decorating next year.


Reserve Space for Clothes and Buy a Clothing Rack


Seasonal clothing hogs a lot of space in a closet. So when it is not yet their time, why not tuck them elsewhere? Make room in your storage area for these, and invest in a clothing rack. This way, the clothes have a distinct space reserved for them, and you can grab them without a hitch when the right season rolls in. With a clothing rack, you get more space for shoeboxes, as well, for off-season footwear. This is also one way to maximize vertical space, which many other organizers cannot do.

Image by Sam Lion at Pexels


Use a Damp rag When Cleaning


There are times when a duster will not suffice when cleaning your storage areas. When the dust is settled thickly on surfaces, a damp rag is your best bet. It will ensure that dust does not fly off the shelves and will stick on the rag instead. You can avoid sneezing too much as well. For a less arduous cleaning experience, keep a basin of water with you in the room you are cleaning. This way, each time the dust is heavy on the rag, you can wash it off with ease. But if the dust is hefty, make sure to change the basin of water as often as needed.


Clean from Top to Bottom


It can be tempting to start wiping the surface of whichever area you reach. However, it is a good idea to always start from the top. That way, the dust and dirt will go down. If you start at the bottom or elsewhere, the dust will fly off the shelves to other places, even at the top.


Declutter Is the Keyword


When organizing, the best course of action to undertake is still to declutter. It can be tempting to keep things when you have the mindset of “I might need this later” or “I like this.” Items will only pile up and take up more space in your storage area if you don’t throw or donate unnecessary objects out.


Each time you are organizing, take stock of the things you are moving and get rid of stuff you do not particularly need anymore. You have to be honest while doing this. If you need some help deciding if an item is worth keeping, you can always employ the KonMari method of figuring out whether it still sparks joy.


And one more thing, do not procrastinate. If something needs organizing now, do it right away. Waiting for a later time will only result in a stockpile of things you need to arrange or put away.


Image by Anete Lusina at Pexels