Monday, February 20, 2017

How We Store Our Stuff (Now)

How To Store Your Stuff is my number one post that is shared everywhere. It shows our storage room in the basement of our last home. A basement is great for storage and that house had no lack of it. Mr. DIY built 2 of these super easy and relatively inexpensive with OSB and 2 x 4s. You can find that post HERE.

Even though we sold, gave away and tossed a LOT of things that were in the basement of our last house, we still had a lot of storage, so our new house had to have space for it. We either needed a ranch house with a basement or we needed a very large storage shed with AC. Neither of which are easy to find in our area.

After months of looking for homes on the internet, I found our  house (to be) online and this photo was included. Not a basement, but a high crawl. We could possible work with this. The problem with a crawl space in the very humid South is that the humidity is high and  things stored in it would have a musty smell. Not good.

So we called a lot of different companies who did crawl space encapsulation. With encapsulation, the space is sealed with a thick plastic, a dehumidifier and a sump pump are installed to keep the humidity level down around 55%. Encapsulation isn't cheap, but it's a lot less expensive that a house with a basement. 
Before the encapsulation was done, Mr. DIY rented a machine and dug out a few inches of dirt where the storage would go so that the beams above would be about 6 ft and the "floor" somewhat level. Thank goodness we're short! Mr. DIY had to make a new door for the crawl space to seal off the space. 
The crawl space door doesn't look very tall, but it's 53 1/2" high and  44 1/2" wide. We still have to bend down a bit to get in, because we aren't THAT short, but once we get inside, we can stand up.(because there's a big header above the door, which holds up the ceiling/floor joists).

After the space was encapsulated, Mr. DIY started building shelves. The floor is uneven, so he decided on single, level shelf which would be sufficient and our storage bins would be stacked 3 high.

He also laid some interlocking OSB on the floor to make it easier to walk on than the uneven dirt underneath the plastic. We're still not all the way organized, but our crawl space holds everything we need. We also keep the lawn mower and landscape tools and supplies, which we kept in our large 3 car garage at our last house. We are so happy to have the space in the crawl for our landscape tools and supplies because the garage at this house is a small 2 car garage and those things wouldn't fit in there.

This area is the tallest section of the crawl space and Mr. DIY has claimed it for his own. He plans on building a workbench and putting up some wall shelves.

 As you can see we still need to do some work in here. The gardening items on the right need to be organized a bit and the table saw stand will be moved to the area shown above.

This house also has a very large attic, but it's not that easy to get into, plus it gets pretty hot in the attic in the summer, so that limits what we can put up there. 

That's how we store our stuff now. 

How do you store your stuff?


PS: if you'd like to see how we've organized our garage, you can see it HERE.


  1. It looks like you guys have done a great job with that area. We have a tall crawl space under the big family room which was an addition to the home. It allowed for some generous storage but at first it only had dirt floors. We had plastic on the floor and loaded out extra stuff in there. We found out that cardboard can start to smell musty so we converted to all plastic storage. Still though there was a bit of a moisture problem so a friend of ours who works at a local cement company came over and then with a couple of friends poured concrete (through one of the little vented windows) and they spread cement all around and made a nice level floor for us. Then Dan encapsulated it later on and so far it's working well. In the summer we use a dehumidifier to help keep the uptick in moisture that occurs but he has to empty the water.

  2. Oh my: I have a very basic question here: what do you store in all those boxes?? Do you actually go into them very often? We have neither attic nor basement but there are times I miss them terribly! And yes, humidity and heat are a real problem here!

  3. one you've got some uniform storage bins for your storage room, make sure that you're labelling them! It almost looks like a professional warehouse if you can maintain this sort of look at home though! Chances are you're going to have odds and ends that won't fit in your bins at one point of time so be warned!

  4. I personally love the way that the storage room in the main pic looks like, but in real life, I can tell you that you'll prefer having clear boxes so you can see what's inside all those identical boxes so you can pin point what you need at a glance. That and not everything is going to fit into something that size so leave some space for the odd-shaped items too!

    1. Many people prefer the see thru boxes, but that would drive me crazy! There was definitely room to put odd sized items.


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