14 Simple Suggestions for Better Basement Storage
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Basements. They can be dark, dreary and the making of our bad dreams, especially when they're filled with junk. Try these 14 Simple Suggestions for Better Basement Storage to save your things from meeting their demise in the underworld.
1. Consider how often you'll use it.
Unless you're just looking to stow away some junk while hosting a party, if you're deciding to keep something down in the basement it's now going to be somewhat out of reach. Stick to storing items in this space that you won't need frequently, such as seasonal decor and party supplies.
2. Minimize your stuff. Before you decide to take yet another item down into those depths, think carefully. If you're okay with storing something so out of reach, is it possible you may not miss it at all? If it's too ugly for the rest of the house, maybe it's just time to let it go.
3. Utilize vertical storage.
Maximize capacity and allow space to move around, with sturdy shelving or stacking bins.
4. Choose storage supplies carefully.
Choose heavy-duty plastic shelves over wood in case of water leaks. Avoid using cardboard boxes to permanently store items, which can attract bugs and moisture, a surefire recipe for damaged things.
5. Allow airflow.
Naturally moist, basements can be a haven for mold. Help to prevent this by not overstuffing the place and not positioning items directly up against walls to allow a little breathing space.
6. Ask yourself if it's porous or precious?
With their natural mustiness, basements aren't the place to keep things like guest blankets, your prized book collection or family photos. The end result is sure to stink.
7. Invest in the right equipment.
Especially in the warmer months, moisture is likely unavoidable in any basement. Be sure to have a dehumidifier handy, ready to tackle the excess before it latches onto your stuff.
8. Prepare for the unexpected.
A leaky washer or heavy rainstorm could be all it takes to invite water into your home. Protect your things by keeping important objects up off of the floor and securely containing the rest. Store your items away from drains or the natural path of any potential waterflow.
9. Play it safe.
Don't over-crowd areas near the water shut-off valve or furnace to prevent hazards and allow easy access during regular maintenance.
10. Splurge on good lighting.
Choose better and brighter bulbs to help you see all that you have, be able to find what you're searching for and to spot any troubling changes to your space early on.
11. Investigate periodically.
Notice a new smell that wasn't there before or happen upon a small puddle of water? Do what you can to figure out the source immediately so that you can remedy the issue before it spreads.
12. Keep it clean.
It may be the dungeon, but keeping it clean, swept and free of cobwebs will help prevent pests and create a more welcoming space for you to access your basement storage. If these items are important enough to be kept, you'll surely want to care for this space much like you would any other in your home.
13. Create zones.
Keep like with like to save yourself a lot of time. If the items down here are infrequently used, chances are you might forget where you put them. Storing holiday decorations in one place while housing painting supplies in another will streamline your next search.
14. Label everything.
Take it a step further and stick a label on those storage bins to help you and your family find what they need. It doesn't have to be fancy, just a simple sticky note with tape will do or even some masking tape with marker. Don't have enough of one category to fill an entire bin? Store somewhat-related items together and slap a second or even third label on the same bin so that you'll always know exactly what's inside.