The era of building large houses with large gardens is over, with more and more people opting to live in flats; whether due to preference or financial constraints, the truth is that our living spaces have become smaller. Ironically enough, we probably own more things due to our consumeristic lifestyle – so where do we put all the things that we own?
Here are some tips on how to make the most of a smaller property by maximising space and storage.
Yes, owning things is nice – and buying them is fun. But if they’re no longer needed, or if they’ve seen better days, simply get rid of the items that you don’t use. You’ll appreciate the space that you create once they’re gone (and then you can choose whether you want to buy other things instead!)
Everything has a place, and a place for everything
Each room should have its own purpose and items that belong in a particular room need to be put away properly. This will help two-fold:
1) you’ll always know whether to find items e.g. the scissors and the sticky tape when you need to wrap a present!
2) it will avoid rooms becoming cluttered because there’s no space for the ‘extra’ items. This is especially true for kid’s toys; they have a tendency to spread out all over the house, but it’s important that they go back into the playroom/toybox to maintain order.
Revolutionise storage space
Sometimes getting creative with the most mundane of items is all that is needed to give it a boost, for example, if you have a tall wardrobe and find that the bottom part of it is largely empty, you could consider adding shelves, or a shoe rack to maximise the space potential.
It’s also important to plan your storage space; keep the things that you use regularly in easily accessible places, saving the high cupboards and awkward hidey-holes for those items that you only need occasionally.
Swap tables for storage chests
While this isn’t practical for your dining table, it’s easily done when it comes to your coffee table or your small sofa table. Look for furniture that offers storage space, be it a chest or a shelving unit, and get a double solution – the surface space and the storage space. This can be extended to other pieces of furniture, such as your bed – choose one that has built-in storage which is the ideal place to store blankets and quilts. If you don’t want to buy a new bed just yet, don’t underestimate your current under-bed storage space, which can accommodate both hard and soft storage containers.
Use your vertical space and get creative
Since most furniture tends to go on the floor, it’s easy to forget about all the space above your head. By installing hanging shelves or cupboards, you’re increasing your storage space, and where possible opt for high pieces of furniture like shelving units or cupboards. This will minimise the amount of furniture that you require, without compromising on storage. Use hooks around the house to keep items tidy and off the floor using as little space as possible.
Be choosy with your belongings
See what you already have and what you actually need before buying things and adding more belongings to your house. Determine whether you have the space for them and what function they’re going to have. This ranges from tea towels to pieces of furniture. Although space-saving furniture is a good idea in practice, if you don’t need it then there’s no point in having it.
Looking for a new place to call your home? Check out our latest properties here.