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posted: 2/8/2014 12:56 AM

Disorganized garages can be reclaimed

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  • Jim Melchert of the Garage Store, right, shows the organization of new cabinets installed for Bob DeBellis of Roselle, winner of last year's Daily Herald Garage Makeover Giveaway.

       Jim Melchert of the Garage Store, right, shows the organization of new cabinets installed for Bob DeBellis of Roselle, winner of last year's Daily Herald Garage Makeover Giveaway.
    Mark Black | Staff Photographer, 2013

  • Part of the garage makeover last year included a rail system that can be customized to hold nearly anything, including bikes.

       Part of the garage makeover last year included a rail system that can be customized to hold nearly anything, including bikes.
    Mark Black | Staff Photographer, 2013

  • Bob and Dianne DeBellis of Roselle, from left, last year won a garage makeover performed in part by Jim Melchert of the Garage Store.

       Bob and Dianne DeBellis of Roselle, from left, last year won a garage makeover performed in part by Jim Melchert of the Garage Store.
    Mark Black | Staff Photographer, 2013

 
By Jean Murphy
Daily Herald Correspondent

Have you been forced to scrape ice and brush snow off your car this winter because your garage is so disorganized there is no room for your vehicle?

Is space at a premium in your home? Are you looking for additional places to store things like suitcases, folding tables and off-season outdoor items, as well as the usual tools and sporting items?

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Garage Store of East Dundee has been helping homeowners reclaim their garages since 2007, transforming them into another "room" of the house.

"Our business picks up every November before winter hits as women, in particular, call to say they want their garage organized so they can use it for their car during the coming winter," Garage Store owner Jim Melchert said.

"People living in Chicago with alleys and tight garages are particularly hungry for space, it seems," he added. "They want us to fit overhead storage racks wherever we can in their garage because they are desperate for the additional storage."

Garage Store is the place to go when you want a garage makeover or a minor tweak. Its solutions range from $339 for an overhead storage rack to $10,000 for a total garage makeover with a polymer floor, walls and cabinet system, etc.

"All of our products and services for the garage come a la carte so homeowners can pick and choose what fits into their budget," Melchert said.

For instance, Garage Store carries several lines of cabinets, wall systems, as well as hooks, baskets, specialized sports racks, shelving and more. In fact, it is the exclusive designer and installer in Illinois for Gladiator GarageWorks, a line of powder-coated steel cabinets made by Whirlpool. It also carries ceiling-mounted bike pulley systems and brands SafeRacks and MonsterRax for overhead storage.

One of the most popular parts of Garage Store's service repertoire is the application of an easy-to-clean floor. It is an OSHA approved, slip-resistant polymer flooring system. Since Melchert is a chemist, he understands the science behind the two-component system and his staff is able to install a floor coating that outperforms the competition.

"And since our staff has years of experience in commercial flooring systems, such as those at manufacturing facilities, automotive centers and restaurants -- all more demanding than residential work, they transfer those skill sets to our residential work," he said. "We also use our commercial-grade products with our residential customers, adding superior strength and performance.

"A quick fix to free up floor space is installing overhead storage -- stationery or adjustable -- to get seasonal items off the floor. Also, mounting wall cabinets and baskets help store the equipment they have for various sports, hobbies and so forth," Melchert said. "We design, install and help you organize."

Garage Store carries an entire portfolio of solutions for people so that every garage installation is unique to the needs of the customer, Melchert added.

"Our aim is to come up with ways to make people's lives easier. So, we go out to talk to them at home and really understand what activities they are involved in; how many kids they have; and so forth. Then we come up with a proposal and a price."

This spring Garage Store will team up with The Daily Herald to hold the second annual Garage Makeover Giveaway. Visit www.dailyherald.com/contest/garage for more details about how you can send in a photo of your disorganized (but not garbage and clutter-packed) garage. If you are the winner, you will win a $5,000 garage storage and flooring package from Garage Store.

"This year I would like to resurface someone's garage floor and add a decorative coating to make it look brand new. Then I will design a wall and cabinet system for organization and overhead storage racks for max storage," Melchert said.

"I want to help someone who needs some help with feng shui and organization in their garage, but doesn't need junk hauled away. I want someone to send us a photo of their garage and then write to us about how an organized garage will transform their life," he said.

Garage Store has a 2,000 square foot warehouse and showroom at 1082 Rock Road Lane, Unit E, in East Dundee that is open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday, and 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday.

For more information, call (847) 428-8862 or visit www.garage-store.com.

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