How to Organize Storage Room?

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By Deirdre Mundorf

Updated: Mar 29, 2024

8 min read

How to Organize Storage Room
Photo: @theorderlyspace

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    Over the years, the storage room has become a depository for everything from tools and toys to batteries and old exercise gear. It has been so packed that navigating through it has become a challenge. You might find yourself with a garage or storage area in need of a serious removal of items.

    It's easy to fill up available space without considering if we actually need all of it and the accumulation of stuff can weigh heavily on us.

    It is crucial to set aside dedicated time, wear appropriate clothing, and create an atmosphere, such as listening to music and begin by clearing out large items to create space, then categorize your belongings into donate, trash, sell and keep. Taking everything out and only putting back what you truly need can help you make decisions about each item.

    It's also essential to handle sentimental items with care, ensuring they're stored safely to prevent damage. Before buying storage bins,  determine your actual storage needs. Dispose of items like old hardware and paint following proper guidelines for safety and responsibility. Consider donating the items.

    List items for sale immediately to prevent them from becoming a permanent fixture in your space. While your storage room may not become organized overnight, taking these steps will significantly improve its functionality and your peace of mind.

    Also Read: Laundry Basket Organizer for a Clutter-free Laundry Area

    Compile an Inventory

    Compiling an inventory of all stored items is essential, especially when it comes to smaller items like electronics, artwork, clothes and pictures. While larger furniture pieces are easier to recall, smaller ones often slip from memory over time.

    Compile an Inventory
    Photo: @unclutterit

    Maintaining a detailed list using a spreadsheet and taking photos of items can help keep track of everything stored in the unit. Additionally, keeping all inventory descriptions and photos in a centralized location is advisable. Creating a map to indicate the location of belongings within the unit can also be beneficial.

    Using Clear Plastic Bins 🔗

    Plastic Bins for Storage
    Available on Amazon

    You might want to opt for clear plastic bins over cardboard boxes for storage purposes. While cardboard boxes are fine to use and cheaper, plastic bins offer the advantage of easy visibility into their contents. This can save time and effort when trying to find specific items stored within them.

    Dismantling the Furniture

    Dismantling the Furniture
    Photo: We Care Removals

    Break down furniture pieces and store them vertically to save space and organize better. This involves dismantling headboards, bed frames, and tables, among other things. Store each item vertically at the rear of the storage area, except for mattresses, which should be laid flat. Storing items like headboards upright or on their side creates additional floor space. Consider using the table as makeshift shelves for stacked boxes inside the storage unit.

    Arrangements for Heavy Objects

    Arrangements for Heavy Objects
    Photo: Smooth Move Removals

    Arrange hefty objects at the rear of the storage unit's bottom to maintain stability and prevent damage to lighter items. Start by storing large furniture and heavy boxes first, ensuring they're positioned securely to avoid crushing smaller or lighter items. This method establishes a solid foundation for lighter belongings.

    Placement of Items

    Placement of Items
    Photo: @homeoflittles

    Organize your storage by placing frequently used items at the front. Certain belongings, like seasonal clothing or essential baby items, will likely be accessed more often than others. Stock these towards the entrance in clearly labeled containers to easily finding it again through boxes each time you visit the storage unit.

    Vertical Storage

    Vertical Storage
    Photo: Jillian Harris

    Don't forget to utilize vertical space when packing your storage unit. Stack boxes high and store furniture upright. If you have items like bookcases, maximize space by utilizing their shelves. Install wire or hanging shelves to accommodate smaller items. For taller units, keeping a foldable ladder or step stool inside can be handy.

    Labeling 🔗

    Labeling Storage Boxes
    Available on Amazon

    Labeling is crucial when it comes to organizing a storage unit. Even if you believe you'll remember what's inside each box, chances are you won't after some time. Use permanent markers or printed labels to clearly mark every box. Position the labeled side facing the front of the unit for easy identification when you enter.

    Selecting the Optimal Storage Facility

    Define the Primary Purpose of the Storage Facility

    Initially, contemplate the reason behind storing your possessions. This will dictate the appropriate size of the storage unit.

    For instance, if you intend to store business inventory, opting for a larger unit to accommodate potential expansion is advisable. Conversely, if you only require temporary storage during a relocation, selecting a unit suitable for your current belongings is sufficient.

    When arranging your storage arrangements, consider the following queries:

    • Do I require a temporary or permanent storage solution?
    • Will there be a rotation of items in and out of the storage unit?
    • Is it intended for business assets, personal belongings, or a vehicle?
    • Are specific conditions necessary for the stored items, such as a temperature-controlled environment.
    • Will regular access, such as 24-hour availability, be necessary for item rotation purposes.

    Drafting an Initial List of Belongings for Storage

    While you likely have a rough notion of what you intend to store, compiling a detailed inventory ensures nothing is overlooked. This process entails:

    1. Tallying the quantity of boxes for storage.
    2. Approximating dimensions for bulkier items.
    3. Documenting serial numbers for electronics or valuable possessions to aid in recovery if stolen or misplaced.
    4. Identifying items requiring frequent access for strategic placement within the storage unit.

    Determine the Appropriate Storage Unit Size and Measurements

    Avoid overspending on unnecessary space by visually gauging your requirements. Use masking tape to outline a space resembling an average storage unit in your driveway or elsewhere, and place empty moving boxes within to assess capacity.

    Measure the suggested storage unit against familiar spaces in your home, such as a garage or spare bedroom. Consider the necessity of a walkway, particularly if you'll be accessing the unit regularly.

    Opt for a Larger Size

    Although choosing the precise storage unit size might appear cost-effective, it's wise to allow some flexibility. Relocating storage units poses difficulties, so allot extra room for future items. Additionally, remember that sometimes, a slightly bigger storage unit only incurs a marginal increase in monthly cost. Factors to consider when selecting a unit include:

    • A bigger unit diminishes the likelihood of excessively high box stacking.
    • Extra space facilitates improved organization.
    • Crowding can result in item damage.

    Evaluate the Nature of Items to be Stored

    Storing boxes is uncomplicated due to their stackability and standard measurements. However, items such as mirrors, sofas, wine collections, or delicate sculptures may pose stacking challenges and might necessitate additional space for protective wrapping.

    Allocate additional room when storing fragile items to accommodate protective wrapping or non-stackable nature. Also, assess how bulky items will fit into the unit and if they can be dismantled to conserve space. If your storage requirements fluctuate seasonally, anticipate extra space to keep these periodically used items.

    Grasp Storage Unit Measurements

    Storage units are categorized by their length and width, providing an approximation of the available floor area in square footage. To determine the suitable size, assess the square footage needed for the belongings from each room you intend to store.

    Remember that storage units generally feature a ceiling height of 8 feet. Utilizing tall shelving units or stacking boxes can optimize space. Verify the dimensions of the unit's door. It should comfortably accommodate large items without risking damage. For storing room contents, a rough estimate is that a small bedroom typically fits within a 5’x10’ unit, whereas a two-bedroom apartment may require a 10’x20’ unit.

    Top Store Room Designs for Your Home

    Discover simple storage room layouts suitable for any household, both modern and traditional styles.

    Cabinet Storage

    Cabinet storage
    Photo: HGTV

    For easy access to frequently used items, opt for strategic storage placements. Consider integrating  cabinet storage units into your storeroom layout. This tailored approach maximizes functionality, especially in compact spaces. Tailor the cabinet sizes to your specific storage requirements, avoiding a one-size fits-all approach. While custom solutions may entail higher upfront costs, they often yield greater long-term value,particularly for homeowners.

    Freestanding Units 🔗

    Standing Units for Storage Room
    Available on Amazon

    In a simple storage room design, freestanding units offer both increased storage capacity and aesthetic appeal. These units come in various styles, enhancing the overall look of the storeroom. Position them in visible corners for maximum impact when the storage door is opened. Assembling freestanding furniture is usually straightforward. Trendy and portable designs are readily accessible in the market.

    Open Concept

    Craft an open concept storage area
    Photo: Digs Digs

    Craft an open-concept storage area to enhance both convenience and aesthetics within your home. By opting for an open design, you create a space that facilitates easy access to items while also serving as a showcase for your belongings. Ensure your storage units or shelves complement the wall colors to create a sense of continuity and spaciousness.

    Open Shelving

    Open Shelving
    Photo: @orgjunkie

    Utilize open shelving to transform any room into a versatile storage area, eliminating the need for a dedicated storage space in your home. With open shelves, you can efficiently store and display various items, offering easy accessibility without the hassle of multiple cabinets or doors. Enhance the visual appeal by showcasing favorite decorative pieces, such as books, plants and souvenirs.

    Beneath Stairs

    Struggling with space at home,consider a modern small storeroom design tucked beneath your staircase. It's a clever solution for storing items you don't use often.

    Storage Room Beneath Stairs
    Photo: Woodsmith Plans

    Customizing this space is worth it, especially since the staircase's shape can make it awkward otherwise. Plus, it's great for storing clothes or shoes, given its easy access.


    Making the most of your storage unit space at your storage facility is simpler than you might imagine. By adhering to a few straightforward above mentioned guidelines, you can optimize your space and ensure your storage unit serves its purpose effectively. Proper organization not only minimizes the risk of future damage or injury during the moving process but also ensures easy retrieval of items. Furthermore, packing and organizing your belongings will contribute to their longevity.


    How to Organize a Storage Room at Home?

    Install shelves and categorize the stuff you need to store and throw out all the unwanted and unnecessary stuff. Try to label your stuff if stored in bulk or in a container to reduce the clutter and doing so would also make it easy for you to find stuff.

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