3 quick storage area upgrades

(NC) Skating season is well underway, but the gear is buried somewhere in the garage. And while the forecast continues to call for freezing temperatures, the extra winter layers are still hidden in one of the bins in the closet.

It’s time to take control and get organized with help from design expert Kimberley Seldon. Working with the Electrical Safety Authority, she offers these tips for creating smart, functional and well-lit storage in the basement.

1. In the zone. Map out storage zones to ensure items are where you would expect them to be. From winter wear to camping gear and books to toys, built-ins and storage benches work well to eliminate visual clutter without taking up too much floor space. Consider adding shelves at different heights for varied accessibility and use nooks and crannies — think about the space under the stairs or building storage units between rooms.

2. Lighten up. Good lighting is often forgotten when storage spaces are planned. But seeing is believing! A licensed electrical contractor can provide ideas on automated options for closet lights and suggest the best lightbulbs to use. Motion sensors are another popular choice. Just remember that it’s important to know the rules around the safe distance between ceiling lights and storage items to prevent anything from catching fire. For example, pot lights must be 150 millimetres away from any stored items or cabinets; while other ceiling lights must be 300 millimetres away.

3. Hidden electrical. Give devices, laptops and gadgets a designated space by adding charging stations and strategically located outlets. And while we would all like to tuck away the electrical panel, keep in mind that it can’t be located in a closet or bathroom and that the working space in front of it can’t be obstructed.

A Licensed Electrical Contractor and interior designer will help to design an organized and safe space for your family. Find more storage solutions online at poweryourreno.ca.

Attention editors: This article is for distribution in Ontario only.

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