Does your car have to “camp out” in the driveway or on the street because your garage is filled up with everything from rickety lawn furniture to broken appliances? If your answer is “Yes,” then it’s time to clear out the clutter and reclaim the territory for your car before Old Man Winter comes a callin’. Then, instead of scraping snow and ice off your windows on freezing cold winter mornings, you can hit the road—without frostbitten fingers!
As you pull each of the objects out of your cluttered garage, take a look at them with the old eagle eye and ask yourself the following six questions:
1. When was the last time you used it? The rule of thumb is that if you haven’t used something in a year, you should get rid of it. But use a bit of logic before you pull the trigger. If you bought rollerblades a few years ago and haven’t strapped ‘em on once, they’re obvious candidates for resale or donation. But if you have a toboggan that you haven’t used for a year or so because there hasn’t been enough snow, hang on to it.
2. Does it work? If the answer is no, either send it packing or make arrangements to have it repaired—now.
3. Do you still need it? Are you hanging on to a tire pump for a bicycle you no longer own? Get rid of it.
4. Does it still belong here? Unless you have a climate-controlled garage, gather up anything that could be damaged by dampness or extreme temperature fluctuations and relocate it. This category includes anything that’s made of fabric or paper.
5. Do you have more than you need? If you bought a new croquet set last year, why are you hanging on to the old one? Get it outta there!
6. Is it still in good shape? Ratty doormats and split trash containers have obviously outlived their usefulness. Clear them out and replace them with new ones.
As you’re sorting through the mess in your garage, take care of the biggest things first. Moving out the canoe you haven’t used in 10 years or the broken-down motorcycle your son left behind when he moved out will instantly give you a whole lot more space to work with. Plus, you’ll feel as though you’re really making progress, and that will spur you on to further action. Before you know it, your car will be settled into its spacious new home, sweet home!
For more terrific tips that’ll help clear out your garage in no time—and the rest of your house too—check out my Can the Clutter! book. You can even try our Free Preview for 21 days! It’s filled with step-by-step secrets to digging in, digging out, and enjoying a clutter-free home. Follow us on Facebook for even more Jerry Baker tips!