We Cleaned Out Our Garage – in ONE Day!

posted by Andrea | 06/27/2011

If you live in Michigan and decide to move 3 days before Christmas — chances are pretty good that the weather is going to be cold.

So, when we moved into our new house just a couple days before Christmas, we were thankful that although the weather was cold, it was NOT snowing, raining, sleeting…or below freezing. I think the sun actually came out for part of the day!

Even still, we tried to move as quickly as possible and ended up shoving lots of “stuff” in our extra garage… just as a place to put it for now {who can relate to that!?!?}

But then, when we started tearing up and gutting nearly half our main floor, we needed a temporary holding space for all the carpet, pad, trim, doors, windows, etc. that we were pulling out of our house. And since it was still winter, those things also went into our extra garage!

So pretty soon, our extra garage looked like this::

Yup, it was pretty bad!

Thankfully, we do have another 2-stall garage so both of our cars were still inside throughout this whole process 🙂

But two weekends ago, we decided we couldn’t handle the mess any more and it was time to clean out our garage. So we ordered a 10-yard dumpster.

We figured it would take us several days to clean out our garage and fill this dumpster and I was actually worried we wouldn’t be able to fit everything in the dumpster.

But, after ONE afternoon, we managed to clean out the entire garage and filled our dumpster to the brim! Dave practically “packed” the dumpster like a puzzle so everything fit perfectly and there was no wasted space.

And now our extra garage looks like this:




Obviously, it still needs a good cleaning {and repainting!} but it is currently one of Dave’s favorite spaces to “hang out” — we actually call it “The Man Cave” right now!

He has a TV with surround sound, his weight bench, his grill, the tractor, a workbench area, etc. etc….so you can see why he likes to “hide out” in here for long periods of time!!

I was so excited about our quick, one-day garage transformation and figured maybe it might motivate some of you too. I’m sure many of your garages are much cleaner than ours was…so just think how much you can accomplish in one day; or even just one afternoon {and seriously, the dumpster was SOOO convenient and only cost about $175 for a week}

With the long Fourth of July weekend coming up, now might be just the time to call for a dumpster and have a garage cleaning party!!

Oh, and just because I think it’s so cute, here’s a picture of the outside of our second garage/Man Cave.

What are your biggest “garage organizing” issues??

Is your garage as bad as ours? Is it worse? Can you fit your car(s) in the garage or not?

We’re planning to clean out our main garage later this summer and I’ll have all sorts of garage organizing tips to share with you then!!!


Filed under: OrganizingPurging

Leave a comment


  1. nicky


    Gosh, you have so much space. Here in uk our ‘family’ home has 3 bedrooms (one too small for adult sized bed!) no basement, no garage, and we converted the loft so that our two girls have a bedroom to share and the two boys have the other bedroom. We use the tiny bedroom as a study space. One living / dining room downstairs which is 12 foot by 21 foot long and a six by six foot square kitchen. I would love to have a house like yours but it is totally beyond our means (even our house is worth $403325) house prices are soooo high. I am really lucky to have our modest home so no complaints but can’t help but smile wryly at some of your posts – if only, sigh. Keep up this excellent web site and i can live vicariously in a lovely uncluttered home!


  2. Sonja von Franck


    HA! Your posts are eerily inline with my life! My husband just “left the country” literally tonight and my surprise for him when he gets back is to “rectify” the mess I’ve created in our garage. There is usually really great organization in place BUT with my Dad’s recent move I have brought home things from my childhood that I haven’t even been able to bring in the house yet. That on top of some other clutter and a chair that didn’t sell at the estate sale that I have high hopes for selling on Craig’s List this week. So you see how your posts have been great reads for me tonight. Thanks!


    Andrea Reply:

    Thanks Sonja — and what a lovely surprise for your husband!


  3. Kassie


    Great job! I love the garage – it looks so nice!


  4. Faith


    Your garage looks great! My husband has been working on restoring/rebuilding our garage for the past few months. They started last fall with building a whole new roof from scratch. Then this spring they started working on putting new windows and a new door in. They are going to install a new garage door soon. They ran electrical from the house out to the garage. etc. He just cleared a bunch of stuff out of the garage we had been storing in their. It’s a great feeling to have it all cleaned out. 🙂 You have a beautiful garage/ “man cave” ” 🙂


    Andrea Reply:

    Wow, sounds like you have quite the project on your hands over there! But seriously, it is so nice to have a clean, organized, and usable garage. It will all be worth it in the end!


  5. Rivki Locker (Ordinary Blogger)


    What a brilliant idea. That dumpster sitting outside is probably all the motivation I’d need to get my garage and attic cleared out. I’ll have to look into that. Great idea!


    Andrea Reply:

    The dumpster made it SOOOO much quicker and easier to clean out our garage. Plus, we were paying for it so that gave us the deadline that we needed to finish ASAP!


  6. Heart and Haven


    We’ve been working on Project Garage Organization too! We have been making “zones” (ie. laundry, crafts, gift wrap, christmas, etc.) It’s taking us a long time though – between combining 2 households when we got married 7 years ago, multiple moves – it has really become a dumping ground for everything. We’re planning on having a garage sale soon!


    Andrea Reply:

    Oh I LOVE your “zones” idea. We do that too — but right now, we’re still mostly focused on purging everything we don’t need/want. Once we have everything cleared out, then we will start to put it all back together in an organized fashion! I can’t wait until it’s finished!!
    Just keep plugging away a little at a time, and you WILL eventually finish…I promise!