Declutter Your Home With Added Storage
The size of the average American family has decreased over time but the size of our average house has grown. Why? I’m convinced it’s the amount of stuff we have. Do we really need 4 different types of strollers and a wagon? Does my 2 year old really need 18 pairs of shoes? Well, that’s debatable, but rather than arguing with my spouse about whether it’s necessary or buying a bigger than necessary house, I look for other solutions.
There are many places in a home where you can make more efficient use of unused space. One place may be as simple as upgrading your closets to a more useful shelving system or a double row hanging system as I did in this previous post. Another way to gain storage is to create a well thought out shelving system in your basement. I took a 12’x7’ space and planned it out with items we wanted to store. My arrangement is a simple floor to ceiling shelving structure that allows for easy access for up to sixty 20 gallon totes. The amount of stuff stored in this small space is incredible.
A space that generally goes totally unused is your attic. I recently just added almost 200 square feet of storage in the attic above my garage. This was a pretty affordable and easy improvement. All you need to do is cut a new opening in the drywall between the trusses (or enlarge your current access), install a fire rated attic ladder (a regular attic ladder is fine if your ceiling isn’t fire rated), and put down some plywood. I made things a little more difficult because I plan to heat my garage. So I added an extra row of 2×4’s perpendicular to the bottom of the truss to add more thickness to the ceiling for insulation under my platform. Then I insulated underneath the plywood and the entire attic space. This wouldn’t be necessary though if you don’t plan to heat your garage.
As you can see from the pictures, this ended up a very usable storage space. I’ve also seen people add shelves between the trusses for even more space. You need to be careful not to store too much weight in your attic because you could overload the trusses. Although, it’s perfect for the kids big plastic outdoor toys, Christmas decorations, camping gear, or gardening supplies.
Adding storage can be a great way to clean up and declutter your home. Think about how you can use the unused space in your home more effectively.