In most houses, basements serve as additional storage where we throw in any extra items and boxes. Those neglected basements usually develop mold, they are dusty and there is plenty of mess lying around. If you know your basement suffers from the same condition, then you should probably do something about it. A neglected basement could only bring more trouble in the future, so let’s see how you can organize and utilize it.
The first thing on your list should be decluttering. Since most of us simply throw stuff in there to declutter the house, there are probably plenty of items you haven’t seen for years. Go through all of the things in the basement and see what is still usable and what is not. Simply get rid of any old things that have no value or donate some of the useful things to charity.
There will probably be some sentimental items that you can keep and use to decorate your basement later. What is more, don’t forget to clean up the crawl space in your basement to make sure it is completely clean and ready for reorganizing.
After you have figured out what stays in your basement, it’s time to organize it. Think about different storage solutions for all of your stuff. If you have shelves, you can easily store some plastic boxes or wood crates and keep all the tools, clothes, toys or sentimental items in there. Also, don’t forget to label the boxes and crates so you’ll know where to look for certain things.
However, if you plan on turning your basement into a living area, you can use cubbies to store everything. They look pretty and you can easily repaint them and use them as furniture and decoration. You can even build them yourself. They leave plenty of space for the bins, decorative storage boxes or some hooks for storing jackets and other clothes.
Think about safety
Since you are still going to store a big amount of items in your basement, you have to think about safety. Wobbly shelves are not an option because they create the potential danger of things collapsing on you and your family members. To prevent such misfortunes, you should build heavy framed shelves by using studs and paintable plywood. Measure all the boxes and items you plan on storing and provide appropriate depth and clearance. Another aspect to consider is the safety of the stored items and the whole basement area.
During rainy seasons and harsh weather conditions, basements are prone to get dampened, which can later grow into mold and mildew. This significantly ruins the area and affects the quality of the air. Thus, in order to prevent your basement from turning into a Petri dish filled with mold and fungi, you should consider installing a basement drainage system which will preserve the room, all of your items and clean air.
Utilize the walls
If you want a completely organized basement, you need to be clever. Don’t neglect the wall storage and make sure every nook and cranny is utilized. Besides shelves, you can set up a pegboard with hooks where you can organize all of your tools. Also, you can leave a small workstation under the board, or build some smaller shelves for storing any paint or spray can you use for your DIY projects.
Test the layouts
If you plan on doing any future remodeling, you should test the functionality of the potential design. Divide the basement space with tape on the floor and see if the furniture and other items can fit. Try out several different layouts in order to find the perfect one, and the future remodeling will be a piece of cake, while your basement stays clean and organized.
No basement should be neglected for two reasons. First, the damp and messy basement can be a potential hazard for your whole house. Second, you are missing valuable living space. So, roll up your sleeves and organize that basement of yours.