In a recent survey, 67 percent of homeowners said today's homes are not built with enough storage.
Many people look to the garage for additional space, but often pile in so many storage items that there is no room for cars.
Here are a few tips for tapping into unused space while making sure your two-car garage holds two cars:
Send Your Pack-rat Tendencies Packing.
Once or twice a year, clean out your garage. If something is broken, you haven't used it in a year or your kids have outgrown it, get rid of it. Consider donating items to a local charity or setting up an annual garage sale to purge older or unused items.
Make Your Walls and Ceilings Work For You.
Many homeowners stack and pile things on the floor of the garage but never consider storing items on the ceilings and walls. You can save lots of room by hanging bicycles from heavy-duty hooks in the ceiling or installing shelves to hold bins of toys and seasonal items.
Store Low For Little Ones.
If you're storing children's items in the garage, place hooks and shelves for those items at your kids' eye level.
By storing toys in your child's reach, rather than your own, you can tap into vertical space you might otherwise not have thought to use. Additionally, this will stop kids from climbing on unsteady items to reach their stuff, so your kids stay safe and your garage remains organized.
Protect Your Most Valuable Items.
Chances are, the most expensive equipment in your garage is your car, but when you overload a garage with storage items, you risk damaging the car.
To maximize garage storage while minimizing the risk to your automobile, purchase some inexpensive tire stops to put on the floor of your garage. They mark exactly where the car sits in the garage, so you know how much space you have for storage and won't ding your car.
Buy Smart to Store Smart.
Before purchasing a large item that will live in the garage or storage shed, see if there is a compact version available. For example, utility trailers are very useful for homeowners who landscape, camp, ski, etc., but they can take up nearly as much space in the garage as a car.
Lifetime Products has introduced a Fold-Up Utility Trailer that compacts to only 29 inches wide in less than 90 seconds. This means that instead of taking the place of the car in the garage, it can easily fit next to the car or even through the gate into the backyard, leaving additional room for other items.
For more information on how to make the most of your storage space, visit Lifetime.com.
The 2007 survey was commissioned by Lifetime Products, of 500 American homeowners.