It’s a well-known fact that the basement is the catch-all storage for many homes. When you don’t know what to do with an old item, you throw it in the basement. When you have no use of something anymore, you put it in one corner of the basement. The idea is to use these things again when you need them, but we all know that it gets forgotten once you throw something in the basement. In fact, you might even be buying items that you already have in the basement. Yes, it happens to the best of us.
Isn’t it time to take care of every area in your house, including the oft-forgotten basement? Don’t use it like a garbage can where literally all the stuff you put there is junk. You also invested money in building or paying for that basement, so put it to good use. The first thing you have to do is clean it and organize the stuff already in it. Once you are done with that, maintain the system of cleanliness and organization so you won’t ever have to look at the clutter in your basement again.
Evaluate What You Already Have in the Basement
By evaluation, that means decluttering. Divide the stuff you have there into three piles—for donation, throwing, and keeping. If you barely use an item, but it is still valuable, consider donating it. If the stuff is junk, throw it away. Some things there have bigger value. Consider selling them in a garage sale. You can use the money you can get from selling buying storage boxes and other stuff you need to organize the basement.
Clean the Basement Thoroughly
Clean it thoroughly before you start organizing it. For unfinished basements, the plumbing might still be exposed. If that is the case, use a high-quality cleaning solution for maintaining the interior and exterior stainless steel pipes. This has a double purpose: one, it makes the exposed pipes aesthetically better, and two, some solutions can improve the durability of the pipes.
Choose the Right Shelving System
You cannot have an organized basement without a shelving system. The shelves will keep everything organized. Consider the possibility of flooding when you choose shelves. Raise the shelves higher, so you don’t need to put anything on the floor. Most basements are not climate-controlled, which increases the possibility of molds and mildew. Stay away from wood and go for plastic and metal shelves since they can withstand heat, water, and humidity.
Aside from the shelves, you also need clear containers. You want clear containers because you want to see what’s inside the boxes despite the labels. Leave a clear space for things that you have to hang, such as paddles, hammers, drill guns, and many more.
Categorize the Items
This is the hardest part. Categorizing the items will be the most difficult part because it involves analyzing where each one should go. Be patient, and don’t rush into it. If you can’t finish it in a week, that’s okay. Go back to it when you are ready. Divide the items into holiday decorations, household items, clothing and textiles, toys, and car tools. You should also have a separate container for cables, chargers, screws, nuts, and other small items like these.
Make a Pantry Corner
Your kitchen upstairs might already be bursting at the steams because of all the snacks you’ve been buying lately. Why not consider a pantry corner in the basement? You can store non-perishable and preserved items there, such as potato chips, canned goods, breakfast cereals, and other items. Just make sure that there are no pests and rats there that could eat away at the food you store.
Do This Regularly
The way to maintain the cleanliness and organization of a basement is to keep doing it regularly. Sweep the floor. Vacuum the hard-to-reach spaces and wipe the surfaces. Make sure you have a cleaning basket for all the things that your basement needs. Grab this every morning for at least 15 minutes and give your basement a quick clean. Put back things in their proper places and throw away things you don’t need anymore.
You will be surprised how great you feel after you’ve cleaned and organized this part of your home. The basement doesn’t have to look like a garbage bin. Build a system. Keep to that system until it becomes part of your routine. That’s the easiest way to have an organized basement.