Skip to Content

Prepper Organization Guide

SHTFPreparedness may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page.

Proper storage is the cornerstone to effective prepper organization. Being a prepper requires storing several items, so proper and efficient storage becomes a key approach. Keeping everything organized makes the approach more effective by allowing proper inventory management. Since you’ll also store edible and/or perishable items, arranging things by expiry date becomes all the more important.

Here are some ideas you can put to good use.

Being Organized Is Critical to Survival

Organization is the key to effective and usable storage.

You could have everything like water, food, and other necessities stocked. On the other hand, what good is it if they aren’t accessible? Every bit of storage space and stored items matter.

Having to wade through the entire inventory to get a can of soup is annoying. More importantly, it is wasteful and risks spoiling those very precious items.

Top Prepper Organization Tips

1. Label Everything

Rather than checking individual products or boxes, use a sharpie or label maker to label clearly.

This can include information like expiry dates. Likewise, if you’re using cardboard boxes, use them for labeling the contents of the box.

2. Use Storage Bins or Totes

Storing individual products can gobble up space. Using stackable storage bins frees up space. In addition, they make organization and labeling easier.

Totes and buckets are good picks too.

3. Oldest Items Should Be Easiest to Access

Use the FIFO (first-in, first-out) method. This makes it easier to cycle through products nearing expiry, thus reducing waste.

4. Utilize All Available Space

Utilize space behind sofas, under beds, in the attic, etc. In other words, if you have free space have a plan to use it.

Space is always at a premium, even when the world goes to hell in a handbasket.

5. Use Large Drums

Large, 55-gallon drums can be used for storing water, clothes, oil, and many other items.

Most of these drums are designed for water storage. As a result, the lid is typically not removable. You may need to get creative based on what you need it for.

Long Term Storage Ideas

As a prepper, you likely have many items that are intended to last a long time. With a timeline running into years, it is important to consider proper storage that can work with your timeline.

Here are a few ideas:

Recommended Prepper Storage Containers

Airtight Containers

Having airtight containers for food storage at hand is a no-brainer.

Coffee storage containers are a great prepper organization tool. They are designed to be airtight and have elaborate systems to ensure this. Additionally, they are generally made from metal, which is far superior and reliable for storing food when compared to plastic.

Plastic Storage Totes

Don’t discount plastics just yet. Large totes can hold huge quantities and keep things well organized. You could keep sewing supplies, survival gear, and first aid supplies in these totes. They are resistant to water and pests and have a remarkable lifespan.

Stackable Storage

Using space efficiently comes in a lot easier if you can stack items cleanly and stably. Sure, you can put boxes and bins one on top of the other, but there’s a limit before it becomes a Jenga tower.

Proper stackable storage like water bricks save space and remain stable as containers.

Efficient Use of Furniture

Making use of every available space is a great idea.

Items like furniture with storage space, under-bed sliders, or custom-crafted furniture with storage in mind can come in handy.

Large Drums

As I said before, those large 55-gallon drums can be miracle workers at storing several items. They’re not just for liquids! Alternatively, you can store other items in them like clothes, tools, survival gear, etc.

Large storage can be invaluable once you have sustainable food sources for a post-SHTF scenario.


It’s important to have tools easily available.

Pegboards always make great sense for organizing tools. Any handyman will swear by them. In a prepper scenario where tools are invaluable, pegboards move a few notches up in importance.

Recommended Prepper Storage Shelves

Shelves are an excellent way to store items efficiently in a vertical space. With some creativity, you can use them for organizing anything, including bug out bags.

Here are some ideas to ponder upon.

Custom or DIY

Those who know their way around carpentry or similar skills can pretty much build an excellent shelving system for themselves. You could cover everything from floor to wall, have custom-sized shelves, and build them in a way that suits your organization’s strategy.

Adjustable Shelving Units

Using prepper storage shelves becomes easier with the use of these metal storage racks. Thanks to their inherent build quality, they’re easy to customize and handle. Metal shelves can have high storage and impressive weight-handling quality. Adjustable units are available in various sizes, so you can pretty much take your pick.

Cube Organizers

Widely available and easy to use, these cube organizers are great for storage. You can get them in several sizes and the cubes make it easy to arrange and store items. These cubes are generally made from engineered wood. They’re not exactly fragile, but still, watch the weight.


Careful prepper organization and storage is half the battle for preparedness. Having enough space is important, as is the effective use of that space.

The ideas listed here for organization and storage should be helpful in giving you an idea of how best to utilize space and use it to your advantage.