In most homes, basements act as space where we can throw things sporadically, store items we know we’ll forget about, and avoid stepping foot downstairs. If you have a home with a basement, it’s a great addition to not only your storage space, but also your family’s living space. Rather than avoiding your basement, turn it into a space you love with some simple organization changes. To help you, we’ve put together the best basement organization and storage ideas for your home.
Step One: Declutter
Before you can do anything, you need to declutter your basement. Chances are that there are boxes you haven’t opened in years and don’t even know what waits inside. To make sure you aren’t keeping things you don’t need, or buying more than one of the same things, take some time to go through everything. If you have a lot of boxes filled with miscellaneous items, spend a few days – or even a week – to lay everything out and take inventory of what you have. Yes, it sounds daunting, but it’s an important step.
Next, create three different boxes and label them: keep, store, and clear out. As you’re going through things, put each item in its respective box and be selective. Really think about whether or not you need that second juicer or all of that Valentine’s Day décor that hasn’t seen the light of day in years. Aim to fill up the store and clear out boxes and only place things in the “keep” pile that you know you will genuinely use in your home.
You can take things a step further and separate the store box into a number of categories to increase your organization. It’s important to make sure and run by the contents of the “clear out” box with your partner, in case there are any sentimental items or things that they need. To finalize this step, head to your nearest donation center or host a yard sale to make a few dollars.
Step Two: Organize
The next step is organizing, which we think is the best part. Organizing the space in your basement can create a blissful flow that allows you to use the available floor plan efficiently while simultaneously enjoying the time spent there. It doesn’t matter if your basement is finished or not, a little organization goes a long way.
To create your best basement possible, do a full, detailed cleaning prior to putting anything in its place—new or old. Scrub walls, floors, bathrooms, windowsills, and all of the hard to reach corners that you usually skip. If it needs it, consider applying a fresh coat of paint. Starting with a good canvas is important and will help you create an aesthetically pleasing room.
If you haven’t done so already, take the time to sort everything from your “keep” box into categories. We recommend starting with linens, seasonal clothes, sports equipment, and any sentimental items. This will help you prioritize the space in your basement.
Next, take a look at your current storage options. Do you have built in shelves? Closets? Does it have an usable crawl space? Take inventory of your storage solutions and if you need to, think about where you can add more. Consider a few of these great organization and storage ideas to help:
1. Dedicate Zones
If you don’t already have zones in your basement, take the time to create them now. Having designated zones will help you create good organization and a strong storage flow for the entire basement. It’ll keep things in their place and increase efficiency over time. It doesn’t matter if you have a bar, theater, play room, office, craft zone, workout area, or what—just identify where you want everything to go and plan your layout.
2. Space Under the Staircase
Almost every home with a basement has a plethora of unused space available. Underneath the staircase from the first floor to the basement is a goldmine. Create built-in storage for anything you need, or hollow out the space to use as a small functional desk or craft area. If you have children, consider integrating it into a small playroom and letting them help with the design.
Or, you can simply install floating shelves, a few hangers, and a door to create a small closet to keep things out of the way, but easily accessible.
The open cubby phenomenon emerged a while back in home décor trends, but it doesn’t seem to be going anywhere soon. The good thing is that they’re not only functional… they’re extremely stylish. Depending on the use of the room, you can store remotes, electronics, and movies in wicker baskets or children’s toys in cloth bins. There are so many options to customize your cubbies, which include everything from practical to elegant and everything in between. Create your own, inexpensive entertainment center and mount the TV just above the cubby or add it to a playroom for easy clean up. The options are endless!
4. Custom Storage
While this takes a bit of an investment, it creates a seamless organization system that compliments any basement—or room for that matter. Custom storage involves a carpenter coming in and creating unique, complementary storage space to match your current setup. You’ll discuss what it will be used for with your carpenter to create the perfect solution for any of your basement storage needs.
Repurposed Old Cabinets
If you don’t want to spend the money on custom storage, but still want the results, considering a DIY job using repurposed cabinets. See if any friends are doing renovations and ask for their old cabinets or use ones that you may have saved from a recent project. You can create a desk or workspace that has all of the essential storage space you need.
5. Create a Work Zone
Some people use their basement for a handyman work zone instead of the garage. If you are one of those people, take the time to spruce up and organize your work zone. Install a pegboard so that you can store things on the wall and out of the way, get your workbench in order, and make sure that anything that is a danger to children is kept out of reach and safely locked away.
If you have an unfinished basement, you’ll likely have a lot more usable storage space than families with a finished basement. However, once you’ve organized everything, you’ll get a better chance to observe the space you have and see its potential. Even if you don’t finish your basement all at once, consider filling it with a functional space you’ve always wanted. Maybe it’s a man cave or maybe it’s a craft room. Maybe it’s an office or maybe it’s a home-gym. Use the space for something fun and take things that you won’t use often over to a self storage unit. While it is an additional cost, it’ll be worth it with the ability to find happiness from your new, clutter-free basement.
Step Three: Store
Now it’s time to get everything into its place. Take your time with this; it’s an important step! Start filling in your zones and creating the workspaces that you’ve identified. Only put things back that you’ve decided to keep—avoid putting things you decided to throw out back on the shelf just because you have the space. The goal is to create a basement that you can use and get a sense of joy from, not to simply shove things back into a cleaned space that has a more organized layout. Once you’ve put everything in order, see what you have left in your storage pile. If it’s mainly comprised of things you’ll only use a few times a year, take it to a storage unit. The less clutter you have around your home, the happier you’ll be. Organization and a clutter-free home is a great way to relive unnecessary stress and focus on the things that truly matter in your life. Thus, self storage units are a great asset for every family home.
While going through these organization and storage ideas to use in your basement, take the rest of your things over to a self storage unit at The Lock Up Self Storage. Remember, if you rarely use an item, or if they’re for a specific time of the year, self storage is the best place for them to go. All of the units at The Lock Up Self Storage are climate controlled and secure, so you can rest easy knowing your things are in good hands. Each of our units is secured with 24/7 video monitoring, uniquely coded access gates, a perimeter alarm, and motion-sensor lighting systems. Plus, with our affordable rates and variety of sizes, you’ll be able to find a self storage unit that is perfect for you and your family. Regardless of your storage needs, you’ll find a solution at The Lock Up. Head over to https://www.thelockup.com today and check out our available units.