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In a poor economy when unemployment is high, many people turn to starting their own home-based business. Because of hard times, however, having all the office tools and storage for your office may not always be financially possible. When I started my first business I learned if you think outside of the box and get creative you can come up with some low cost storage ideas that will accomplish exactly what you need.
Homemade Shelving Units
While nice oak shelving units can make for a beautiful office, they are not cheap and can take a huge chuck out of your new business budget. While they look nice, shelves are nothing but a piece of wood for you to set your stuff on and that can be made with a few low cost products. My first business was a gift basket business, so I had large amounts of product inventory and needed shelving in my warehouse to store it all.
I went out and checked at a local resale home improvement store and found the large cement bricks from building and a few long narrow pieces of wood. I set a pair of bricks on the ground equal to the length of the wood and repeated this until I had a wall shelf. It was not the prettiest structure, but it accomplished the storage I needed. You can also use milk crates in the place of the bricks for a little nicer look.
Hanging Shoe Racks
If you have items that are not really made for a shelf but still need to be organized and separated, those over the door hanging shoe racks can be a life-saver and can hold a lot of different items. While they can hang over a door, they can also be nailed onto the wall and used just about anywhere.
Specialty Storage Ideas
Now, there are times when your business may provide storage challenges and this is where creative thinking really comes into play. For example, in my gift basket business I had rolls and rolls of ribbon. The specialty storage racks for these types of items ran into the thousands of dollars and were just not something I could justify buying. With a little bit of thought and some nails and a hammer, I took a few long pieces of outdoor guttering and nailed it to the wall. The rolls of ribbon fit perfectly into the spots and even allowed me to pull out the ribbon I needed while it was still in the rack. Again, it wasn't the prettiest display, but it was more than functional and much less costly than the professional racks.
In another example, I had large rolls of wrapping paper which, as you can imagine, were not easy items to store. Well, I went out and got some long pieces of chain and some wooden dowels. We attached the dowels with hooks to the chain and I was able to place each roll of wrapping paper on a dowel. We then hung the chain and dowels from the wall and I had a functional paper dispenser.
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