Easy, Inexpensive Tips for Saving Space

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

With the majority of families living in small- or medium-sized homes, storage space is certainly at a premium. However, there are ways to live comfortably while not having a Spartan lifestyle. Below are some examples of simple ideas to keep your possessions in order without cluttering your house.

Pull double duty
Some furniture in the house can help save space because it has multiple uses. Seek these items out and use them to the fullest.

*Specialty tables – These could be coffee tables with slide out drawers or a side table that can also display collectibles.

*Storage seats – Ottomans and benches that have storage space built in can be used to stow away blankets and pillows when not in use. They can be used for seating if necessary, or even as a coffee table.

*Kitchen carts – These items have much to offer a small kitchen. They extend counter space, store pots, pans or other kitchen utensils and can also be used in place of a dining table. Many models have wheels so they can be easily moved, if necessary, and may also have a place to keep paper towel rolls and spices.

*Bar stools – If you rarely use your formal dining table, it might be a good idea to eliminate it and instead eat at a counter or kitchen cart using swivel bar stools for seats. They take up less space than normal dining room chairs and can also be used as extra seating when guests visit.

Find new areas
There are portions of the house that often go unused yet have the potential to store items that may not be used every day.

*Bed risers – Raising the bed creates additional storage space underneath. Combined with under-the-bed storage boxes, this area can hide away a variety of objects. Clear plastic containers work best because their contents can be identified without opening each one, and the lids mean the contents are protected from dust. Some also have wheels, making them easier to slide out when needed.

*Closets – Use a system that will reach to the ceiling and make maximum use of the space available. Put seasonal items or rarely used possessions on the harder-to-reach upper levels. Install inexpensive cardboard or plastic drawers to add storage space.

*Study area – If you like the idea of informal dining and prefer to eat meals in your kitchen using bar stools at the counter, then why not use your dining room as an area for the kids to study combined with a home office where you can store important paperwork. By removing the table, you’ll have more floor space where you could but an inflatable airbed for overnight guests.

*Hallways – Mount inexpensive shelves on the walls of these areas and decorate with family photos, vases of flowers and small collectables.

*Over the door – In the bathroom, install hooks from which bathrobes or towels can hang. In the bedroom, use a shoe organizer to keep footwear in order and free up space in the closet.

Just because a house is a little on the small side does not mean there is not ample storage room. With a few of these inexpensive tips, you can make changes so there’s enough room to live comfortably without feeling cramped. By making better use of the space available, your home will seem less cluttered and more welcoming.

Guest post from Helen Pearson.

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