Space saving solutions
If your home is on the smaller side, you’ll know that you sometimes need to be creative when it comes to finding space to store your belongings.
If you’re selling your home, finding a place for your things is even more important. Smaller homes can feel chaotic and messy if there are too many things strewn around, and that’s a definite turn-off for potential buyers.
Start by getting rid of anything you don’t need, want or use anymore, and wherever possible, try to recycle or sell your items online, to raise a little extra cash to put towards furnishing your next property. You should be left with possessions that you either use regularly, or simply love and can’t bear to part with.
The surprise best-selling book, ‘The Life Changing Magic of Tidying’ by Marie Kondo, advocates getting rid of anything you own that doesn’t ‘spark joy’. Which is all well and good until you find yourself without a vacuum cleaner – a joyless, yet essential, item in most homes!
Assuming you’ve taken a more realistic approach to decluttering, you’re likely to be left over with a wealth of belongings, so now’s the time to think about how to store them to best effect.
Clever storage solutions
The average UK living space is smaller than it’s ever been, and there is even an emerging trend for ‘micro-homes’. Retailers are responding to this change with some very clever storage ideas, designed especially for smaller spaces. Ikea is a great example of this, and you can get a wealth of ideas in store.
Vertical storage is a great solution for smaller homes. Rather than taking up valuable space by putting more furniture on the floor, fix it to your walls instead! Slimline shelving or cupboards won’t intrude on your living space and you can take them right up to your ceiling, adding masses of much-needed storage.
Work from home?
Finding space to study or work from home can be tricky, but there are some great, space-saving work stations out there, which fit into small corners and fold away to almost nothing when not in use.
Interior designers will always use large mirrors to add the illusion of space in a small room. Get doubly creative and hang mirrors in a small back yard to create a sense of space outdoors too.
Glass shelving, side tables and coffee tables can have a similar effect as they don’t break up the flow of the room in the same way that bulky wooden furniture can.
When you’re living in a small space, your furniture needs to work hard for you. Choose pieces that perform more than one function, such as a coffee table with hidden storage, or a pull-out sofa-bed instead of a standard 3-seater.
If you have children, it’s a good idea to create a designated area for toys, especially during house viewings. A wooden toy box is a beautiful item of furniture that, with the addition of a few bright cushions, can double up as an ottoman/child’s seating area. Check out Great Little Trading Company for some inspired children’s storage ideas.
When it comes to dining, choose a table that folds away when not in use, and think about chairs that stack, or a bench that fits more people round the table.
Living in a small space needn’t mean getting rid of all your belongings, Marie Kondo style. You just need to use your creativity, and get plenty of tips and ideas from the design experts.