18 Most Common Things Americans Keep in Their Basement

While basements are depicted in movies as scary, in reality, they are actually our favorite spots to store a lot of household items. Are you thinking of what to keep in yours? Here are 18 things you’ll find in most basements across the U.S.

Storage Boxes

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With the amount of empty space it has, the basement has been the perfect place for many to keep storage boxes. This is especially true when the boxes are empty or when they contain items that are seldom used. By doing this, you avoid cluttering living areas and get a specialized space to organize small items.

Old Furniture

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Instead of throwing out that chair or dining table that doesn’t fit the aesthetic anymore, people have found the basement as their safe haven. The basement allows you to keep furniture for future use or preserve it to be sold in the future for more value, like Grandma’s rare antique piece.

Holiday Decorations

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After buying all those Thanksgiving gourds or that amazing Christmas tree, we don’t just throw them away. With the basement, many get to keep their fragile, expensive decorative pieces intact for the next holiday season without having to clutter up livable rooms in the home. “Basements are usually a great place to store any sort of extra boxes or plastic totes since the temperature in basements is usually cooler than in the main level of your home or in closets,” Senior Helpers says.

Seasonal Clothing

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Just like with holiday decorations, a lot of people use the basement to store special clothes they probably wear once a year. This can be that Dracula costume worn for Halloween or special adornment pieces worn during New Year celebrations. When properly stored, the basement keeps these unused clothes safe from pests and dust.

Sports Equipment

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Whether it’s to store a skateboard, a baseball stick, or a small goalpost, the basement is perfect. Sports equipment has no use in the house, and the basement serves as a good location to rid living spaces of them, allow quick retrieval, and even protect these pieces against theft. CNN advises storing them in duffel bags for better organization.

Camping Gear

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Going on hikes and adventures into the wild are recreational activities people have come to love. However, these aren’t everyday events, and you can’t just keep those hiking poles or tents in your bedroom. Instead, the basement has become the preferred location, helping to also protect equipment from weather damage and safeguard against pests.

Laundry Appliances

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That large, 24-pound washing machine may take up too much space in your kitchen or bathroom, making the basement perfect for it. But this isn’t the only reason laundry appliances are stored there. Per Moose Basements, “There will be a lot less damage if your washing machine leaks in the basement rather than the kitchen or elsewhere. If your washing machine leaks from the upper floor down, then the damage can be extensive and cost a lot in repairs.”

Unused Kitchen Equipment

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Yes, we cook throughout the week, but it’s not every day you use the BBQ grill or drink coolers. Many use the basement to store unused kitchen equipment for the next time it’s needed. Even certain appliances, like deep freezers used for long-term food storage, find themselves in the basement, so the kitchen isn’t jam-packed.

Home Improvement Supplies

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People don’t just keep unfinished supplies in basements to save them for future use or stack new supplies there for future projects. Basements are also great locations to keep hazardous items like paint, nails, nail guns, and ladders far from the reach of children and pets.

Tools and Toolboxes

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Not only do Americans store tools and toolboxes in the basement, but some have turned it into a full-blown workshop. The basement is a perfect place to store dangerous tools (for security reasons) and also a secluded, private, and quiet place to work on DIY projects, as Popular Mechanics explains.

Lawn Care Equipment

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Lawnmowers and trimmers are also commonly seen in many basements across the U.S. Rather than being kept outside, storage in basements saves these tools from harsh weather conditions, vandalism, or theft—all achieved while maintaining convenient access to them.

Spare Household Supplies

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Everyone buys those extra packs of tissues, dishwashers, or garbage bags so we don’t have to run to the store every time we need them. Living areas easily get cluttered up by these, so the basement is a lot of people’s preferred location for storage. This way, emergencies are easily taken care of with a quick run downstairs.

Broken Electronics

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Many people use the basement to store appliances that have gone bad pending disposal or repairs. Instead of placing them outside (defacing your curb) or keeping them in a room (cluttering the living area), basements are great for saving damaged appliances for proper recycling.

Books and Magazines

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Unless you have a fancy bookshelf to keep books on, their storage can be a headache. This is especially true considering that disposing of a book is probably the last thing on an avid reader’s mind. Basements are saviors in this aspect. However, avoid placing books close to walls or in hot areas to avoid fast degradation, as Real Simple shares.


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From sporting medals to academic awards and childhood photos holding dear memories, the basement has also been used by many to store important keepsakes. Considering these pieces are usually held throughout one’s lifetime, the basement saves them from light, dust, and moisture. Some people even use it as a showroom to display them like art.

Exercise Equipment

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If you’re a gym rat, like many other people, the basement is a perfect space to store your large and heavy equipment. People also convert it into their complete in-house gym. Basements as workout spaces are great because the temperature here can be cooler and there are no noise distractions that stop you from getting your workout in.

Toys and Games

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Not only do basements come in handy for storing bulky outdoor toys, but they also help people save play items for future children. You get to keep toys as long as you want without unnecessarily filling up your living area. Some even use basements as entertainment rooms for video games and other leisure getaways.

Musical Equipment

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A lot of the popular musical instruments used in homes are large—and we’re talking about the pianos, keyboards, and guitars. They unnecessarily take up a lot of space when they aren’t in use, so a lot of people also store them in basements. Some even use basements as practice areas, so they don’t have to move heavy instruments around.

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