We don’t make plastic storage bins, but we love them! Properly managed, plastic bins help you claim more living space by moving items to attic or basement storage. You can reduce clutter, organize your home and reduce stress with a storage bin system. Plastic bins last better than boxes, are generally stackable, come with handles and sometimes even wheels. Pairing a good storage bin system with a SpaceLift™ attic lift makes storage so convenient, you’ll wonder how you did without one. Just ask some of our customers. We’ve gathered six of the best ideas for storage containers to help make your life easier.
Clear Clutter Before Company Arrives
Whether it’s a party or a casual drop-in, you want your home to look neat when company comes calling. Most of us go about cleaning the wrong way. We run around stuffing our everyday clutter into hiding places. The problem is that like a squirrel and its acorn stash, we tend to forget what got hidden where.
One of our best ideas for storage containers is to create a dedicated “company clutter” storage bin. Put all the last minute clutter stuff in just one or two containers, especially designated for the purpose. Then hide those containers. (If your house is like mine, you’ll want a separate container just for the dining room table clutter.)
If you have a SpaceLift™ attic lift this is extra easy. Drop the lift down, stack on the containers and push a button. After company leaves you push the button again to reclaim your stash of daily essential clutter.
An adjunct idea is to create a dedicated “donation items” storage bin. You can easily tuck it away in the attic. Then instead of doing a clutter-elimination sweep, you can just add items to the bin as they come to mind. When the bin is full, drop it down on your attic lift and take it to the donation center or call for pickup. Many organizations will gladly come to you for quantity donations of clothing and household goods.
Organize Your Bins with Bins
Use containers inside containers. Fewer large containers are easier to organize and store in your attic than lots of little boxes and bags. Give some thought to creating storage bins of “collections” of things you want to tuck away. Rather than a jumble, use smaller, stackable containers inside a large bin. Another of our best ideas for storage containers is to be sure to place an inventory sheet under the top or affixed to the side of the container. A simple sheet of notebook paper inside a zip closure plastic bag and secured with a bit of duct tape does the job.
Use Purpose-Built Storage Boxes Inside Bins
To safely store specialty items like china plates and stemware, Christmas ornaments and such like, there are a variety of specialized boxes and bags meant to properly hold and protect them. Then, following our suggestion in number 2, use larger storage bins to consolidate the collection to make it easier to move the whole set into storage and retrieve it later. Just be cognizant of our number 4 suggestion.
Our SpaceLift attic lifts have a 200 pound per trip carrying capacity, so that’s not the issue in safely moving your valuables in and out of attic storage. But most plastic storage containers are not rated for a lot of weight. They can crack or break through the bottom, especially the versions with built in wheels. A broken bin defeats the whole purpose. Plus, it is much easier to move two 50-pound containers than one 100-pound container.
Consider Canvas Where Appropriate
Okay, not technically an attic storage bin, but there are some great, heavy-duty, canvas bags to store special items like artificial Christmas trees, wreaths and such. These can also be used for things like Halloween decorations, seasonal sports equipment, outdoor décor, etc. Some come with handles and built-in wheels for convenience. A distinct advantage of the SpaceLift attic lift is no vertical limit on the platform and a low profile design platform. So you can wheel a nine-foot Christmas tree upright, in its bag, right onto your SpaceLift and whisk it to the attic with the push of a button. Extra tip: throw a couple of dryer sheets inside the bag to deter insects.
Create a System and Label Everything
You think you’ll remember, but you won’t. It is far easier to start out with a storage system and refine it, than to hunt for missing items among the attic storage bins. Start with a simple inventory list, and maybe even an attic storage placement map. This can be secured in a zip closure plastic bag and hung on a hook from a roof rafter right above the attic stairs or ladder. Color coordinate storage containers and your inventory list. Clear bins are great to see what’s inside; with these use colored permanent markers on duct tape labels to keep your organization system clear.