The garage is of­ten the big­gest room in the house, and yet it be­comes the catchall for ev­ery­thing from tools and kids’ toys to sea­sonal items, bikes, yard- and car-care equip­ment. At times there’s hardly room for a car.

It can quickly be­come a messy stor­age area that does noth­ing but raise your blood pres­sure.

“Peo­ple buy stuff over the sum­mer and put it all straight into the yard. They don’t take into con­sid­er­a­tion that there isn’t room left in the garage to store those things so, come fall, they re­al­ize they have way more stuff than the be­gin­ning of the sea­son,” said Roberto Wil­son, co-founder of Es­pace Garage Plus.

“Fall is the mo­ti­va­tion sea­son be­cause snow is com­ing and home­own­ers need to bring all of their stuff back inside, and that’s where panic sets in. They call us up or look for a mir­a­cle,” he chuck­led.

There are dif­fer­ent op­tions when it comes to or­ga­niz­ing a garage. To­day, con­sumers can find a myr­iad of sys­tems and DIY kits that they can build and in­stall them­selves. These in­clude wall track sys­tems, cab­i­nets, hang­ing bas­kets and bins, peg­boards, and more.

“Gen­er­ally, peo­ple flock to the big-box stores for or­ga­niz­ing prod­ucts. They pro­vide a cer­tain level of a so­lu­tion but not re­ally a so­lu­tion,” said Andy J. Evangelidi­s, pro­pri­etor at Contur Cab­i­net Ltd. “There is no one there to guide them and make rec­om­men­da­tions, and peo­ple end up buy­ing prod­ucts they don’t need or use.

“The ad­van­tage of the garage re­mod­elling in­dus­try is that there are spe­cial­ists who can re­ally cater to your spe­cific needs.”

Garage or­ga­ni­za­tion isn’t a cookie-cut­ter type of sci­ence — it varies from home to home, Evangelidi­s said. If the house­hold has avid gar­den­ers, for ex­am­ple, they may want an area of their garage in which to pot their plants, whereas a car afi­cionado or wood­worker would want spe­cific ar­eas for work­ing on projects with tools.

“Home­own­ers work dif­fer­ently within their garages, and that’s where a spe­cial­ist comes in. The key to hav­ing a well-planned garage is find­ing the right per­son to guide you through the process.”

Spe­cial­ists can help de­sign the space ef­fi­ciently so there’s a proper place for ev­ery­thing you’re keep­ing in there, and an ef­fec­tive way to carry out a list of tasks.

“One thing we’ve learned in the last few years is that peo­ple like cus­tomiza­tion,” Evangelidi­s said. “Peo­ple want to be dif­fer­ent, and that’s when the fun part comes in — like the de­sign and the colours you choose.”

To­day’s or­ga­ni­za­tional sys­tems can be made in a wide range of ma­te­ri­als as well as colours, so you can match it to your car, your home’s in­te­rior, or choose a pal­ette that’s all your own.

There are two main ar­eas of the garage that need to be con­sid­ered in the or­ga­ni­za­tional process: the walls and the ceil­ing. Walls are uti­lized best when out­fit­ted with cab­i­nets, which are usu­ally lam­i­nate or alu­minum, so that you can con­ceal all your stuff be­hind closed doors.

There are also dif­fer­ent shelv­ing op­tions, and “any­thing that you can’t put in a cab­i­net can go on the wall,” Wil­son said.

Flat wall sys­tems are a smart choice: “There’s a plethora of prod­ucts you can hang to prop­erly or­ga­nize your tools and other items.”

The ceil­ing is of­ten over­looked by Diy­ers when they plan their garage, but not by the pros — they re­al­ize that this is one of the most un­der­used places but also one of the best. It’s great for stor­ing things you use only a few times a year, such as hol­i­day dec­o­ra­tions.

“We use the ceil­ing space to an­chor an over­head stor­age rack made out of steel,” said Wil­son, adding: “It’s very sturdy and, when prop­erly in­stalled, it’s very safe. You can use the space above the garage door as well so that it is hid­den from the street.” White over­head stor­age racks blend seam­lessly into a light coloured ceil­ing and are less vis­ually cum­ber­some, too.

A garage should be a natural ex­ten­sion to your home that serves mul­ti­ple pur­poses, from ef­fec­tively stor­ing things — in­clud­ing the car — to be­ing a place in which to get things done. So use this fall to get your garage or­ga­nized for win­ter and make sure there’s room for all the out­door gear you’ll need to move in­doors be­fore the snow flies.

The key to hav­ing a well-planned garage is find­ing the right per­son to guide you through the process.



Plenty of cab­i­net space, over­head racks, a sink and work counter make for a neat and or­ga­nized space in this Longueuil home garage.


Peo­ple like to cus­tom­ize their garages — to make them look dif­fer­ent from the norm — by choos­ing coloured cab­i­nets, varied de­signs and as­sorted ma­te­ri­als.


When or­ga­niz­ing your garage this fall, don’t for­get to in­clude space for the car — es­pe­cially if it’s a drop­top like this, which might get more use in sum­mer than win­ter.

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