Backyard sheds are some of the most common areas that people tend to dump stuff.

Whether that involves unwanted toys, tools, or general household items, it is a common dumping ground for many households. 

If you have experience dread when you are thinking about looking for something in the shed, or even if you want to upgrade to a newer shed, you’ve come to the right place.

This is a complete guide into the best methods of organizing your shed, and how you can find a system that you will actually stick to. 

Step One: Take Everything Out!

The first thing you need to do when you want to organize your shed and get a better idea of the things that are stored in there is to take it all out.

Wait for the next dry day when the wind is relatively calm, and start removing everything from your shed. 

You can combine this with the next step by thinking of categories to put everything into as you are emptying the shed.

Place everything onto the area around the shed on the grass or concrete in your backyard. 

Step Two: Categorize

Taking everything out of the shed can be a great way to see all the tools, items, and equipment that you have.

You might find sentimental things that you didn’t know you still had, or other things that have been long forgotten about. 

Try to be strict with yourself and think about what you want to keep, and the types of categories that will work with the things in your shed.

It could be worth placing tools in one section and gardening equipment elsewhere, or donating old toys which are no longer used by you or your family. 

Make sure you are throwing away anything that you do not need anymore in order to make other items easier to access when required. 

Step Three: Plan Storage And Organization

For those who have larger sheds, or who do not want to throw away or donate as many items, it is worth planning the type of storage system that you want to use.

This can be beneficial if you have more things to organize, because you can map out the area using software online, or draw your own plan. 

This can then be used to experiment with different storage units varying in shape, size, and capacity without having to actually purchase them.

You can use this to see if a certain organization system would work for you and your family before purchasing a certain piece of storage furniture. 

Step Four: Find A Home For Everything 

Once you have tried a few different options for storage and have a rough idea of the organization system you want to use, it is time to find a home for everything in your shed.

This could mean searching for second hand units or looking online for heavy duty industrial shelves which have the right measurements for your shed. 

It is also worth trying to find storage with the right capacity for your items, that also fits in your shed.

This can be done with drawers, shelves, or hooks to hang long cords from. 

Storage Ideas

These are some great ways that you can figure out how to store your items in your shed.

Because everybody has different things that are important to them and worth saving, we have included different shed storage systems to choose from.

Hopefully, some of these will inspire you to find an organization method perfect for your shed

Use Shelving

One of the most obvious ways that you can make a system that works for you and optimizes the space in your shed at the same time is to add freestanding shelving.

You can find heavy-duty shelves in a range of colors, sizes, and made using different materials.

Some can also be adjusted according to your needs and the number of shelves which are needed. 

Open shelving is another great way to stick to categories and ensure that everything has its place in your shed.

This can also help you make the most out of smaller spaces because you will be able to walk around easily if the shelves are against the walls.

Some categories include sports equipment like basketballs and tennis rackets, chemicals which should be stored out of reach from children, heavy-duty tools, and camping equipment. 

It is also worth adding crates or smaller boxes which you can label on your shelves.

This is ideal for creating a more organized system which is reliable and easy for anybody to follow.

Use a sharpie, label maker, or erasable stickers to make clear categories for your shed storage. 


Another great way to create more storage and make the most out of wall space in your shed is to install a small panel of magnetic metal that you can leave tools on.

This can be used to store abrasive files, pliers, and paintbrushes to prevent the bristles from getting damaged. 

While this method of storing tools is typically seen in kitchens, it is highly recommended that you set something like this up so that your tools are kept out of children’s reach and available when you need them. 

You can find plenty of magnetic panels online, but it is important to use a brand with a reputation of being heavy-duty and industrial strength in order to keep your tools safe. 


This is a similar concept to using magnets, but pegboards have a little more versatility. This is because they can be installed over whole walls and larger surfaces.

Use this to make the most out of your shed’s vertical space, and keep all of your items in place. 

It can also be a great way of seeing what you have and knowing where to reach for something when you need it.

Use a pegboard to free up more floor space, and for more flexibility to grow collections, hang certain tools, and keep everything safe. 

You can add shelves and hooks wherever you like when there is a pegboard on your shed wall. 

Think About The Small Things

So many people tend to focus on finding a place for larger items, that the smaller things often get overlooked.

Because of this, it is worth thinking about ways of keeping smaller items like loose screws, zip ties, nails, spare hinges, and so on.

Knowing that you can reach these types of things when you need them will be a relief in the long run. 

There are some containers that can be purchased online, or you could collect old jars and containers to keep nuts and bolts safe.

It doesn’t really matter what you store the smaller things in, as long as you find a system that works for you in the long run. 

Look Up!

Make the most out of the space in your shed by installing wire shelves above eye level.

Depending on the type of roof you have, it could also be useful to store items in the area where the two boards meet in the ceiling.

This space can be used for larger items that are only used in a particular season, like snowboards, kayaks, and skis. 

Overhead ceiling racks are ideal for smaller areas that need more storage space.

However, it is worth thinking about what type of material your shed is made out of, and whether the structure is sturdy enough to support these types of shelves

Use Materials You Have

Use Materials You Have

Some people enjoy purchasing supplies to organize certain areas of their homes, whereas others will want to spend less money and use what they have lying around.

It is worth making use out of certain pieces of furniture that are no longer needed in the house for storage in your shed.

Wooden pallets can also be incredibly useful when it comes to creating better storage systems and organization. 

This is because you can add hooks for tools, make them into shelves if you have enough, and even create your own storage unit.

It could be worth speaking with local warehouses near you to see if they have any pallets that they are willing to part with. 

Similarly, you could purchase secondhand furniture for a more sustainable and affordable method of organizing your shed. 

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What Shouldn’t Be Stored In A Shed?

    Canned food is more likely to go bad when it is stored in sheds, because it is a little more exposed to the elements.

    If you want to keep an emergency food store, you should try to keep them safe and protected in the pantry or cabinet.

    Photographs and important documents are also more exposed to the elements, including bright sunlight and rain.

    These should therefore not be stored in the shed if you can avoid it. Other items to keep away from the shed include clothing, bedding, wine, paint, glue, electronics, and musical instruments.


  • What Can I Put Outside My Shed?

    It depends on what you are trying to achieve. For example, vinyl offers a little more versatility in terms of style and overall finish, whereas metal siding is slightly more protective from the weather.

    You could choose to reinforce the sides with cement, drywall, or engineered wood. These provide a little more insulation as well as protection.


  • Can I Store Christmas Decorations In My Shed?

    Absolutely! It is a great idea to keep your Christmas decorations tucked away in the shed because you will not need them for a long time.

    This means you can easily store them out of reach, like in the ceiling rack or behind other things.

    It is recommended that delicate decorations such as handmade ornaments are stored with care in sturdy containers in order to prevent breakages.

    You can use tissue paper, aerated plastic wrap, or packing paper to keep these safe when you are storing your Christmas decorations in the shed.



There are many ways that you can make the most out of your shed and implement a better organization system.

It is recommended that you try a few different systems when you are planning this, in order to figure out what type of shelving, storage, or hanging system works best for you and your family. 

Everybody has different needs, which is why multiple methods of organization and storage have been outlined above.

Hopefully, these will inspire you to think about the size of your shed and how you can make the most out of the limited space available. 

Remember that there are certain things that should not be stored in your shed.

It is important that you are being thorough during the emptying process, so that you are not keeping anything that has expired or storing things in the shed which should be kept indoors.