By Anita Ginsburg
As hard as we try, it often seems like there's never enough space for everything we want to do. However, if you're a homeowner who finally won the war on clutter, you might be wondering what to do with a now-empty garage.
Related: 5 Space-Saving Garage Storage Hacks
Here are five great ideas for what you can do to transform your garage:
If you want to work out but hate schlepping to the gym, turn your empty garage into a versatile home gym. Depending on which types of exercise you prefer, you can look online for inexpensive pieces of equipment. You can check out local yard sales or look online for gently used equipment. You can also invest in mats, free weights and whatever else motivates you to work out.
As your family continues to grow, you might find yourself with less wiggle room. If your garage is suitable, you can transform it into a kids' sanctuary where they can play in the sand, have painting stations and even play on a few low-sitting swings. The key is to make the space as child-friendly as possible, so that means upgrading your garage door opener, if necessary. It's important if you do use your garage as a playroom that your little ones aren't able to open the garage door. In addition, don't forget to pad the floor with high-quality padding and carpeting for your little ones to play on.
If you love to entertain but simply don't have the room for overnight guests, you can transform your garage into a spare room. Before you start decorating, you need to make sure that the space is insulated to keep guests warm. You also want to make sure that it remains pest-free. Depending on the space, you might need only a coat of paint and a comfy bed to make your guests feel at home, or you may also need to invest in carpeting.
You can use your garage to create the home office of your dreams. Even if it's only in a corner of the garage, you can liven things up with a fresh coat of paint and new office furniture. Since the floor is probably concrete, you can easily warm things up by using throw rugs around your workspace. The garage makes a great office space because it's separate from the rest of the home so you'll have minimal distractions.
If you need a place to store coats, boots and book bags without cluttering up your entryway, use your garage as a mudroom. With a little creativity and elbow grease, you can install wall hooks for everyone's coats, as well as backpacks. You can also create a space where your family can leave wet umbrellas and muddy shoes outside.
When it comes to making use of an empty garage, there are a lot of things you can do. The key is knowing how to make the most of the space without pushing your budget.
Anita Ginsburg is a freelance writer from Denver, Colo. She studied at Colorado State University and now writes articles about health, business, family and finance. A mother of two, she enjoys traveling with her family whenever possible. If you're in the market for a garage door opener, Ginsburg recommends Raynor Door Company.