If you’ve been considering simplifying your life and reducing your living space, you’re far from alone. More and more people are shifting their focus away from accumulating possessions and toward having rich experiences, meaning that saving money on day-to-day expenses and living in locations that provide easy access to entertainment, events, and recreation are becoming high priorities. Many people—especially young people—accomplish this by streamlining their living arrangement so they can live affordably in highly sought locations like urban centers. Whether you’re saving costs by renting a micro apartment or living with roommates, great organization is key to living comfortably in cozier quarters. Follow these tips for building ease and comfort into your small living space.
1. Take a critical look at your possessions.
The first thing to do is to take a good look at your stuff. Nearly all of us have way too much of it. According to Graham Hill of LifeEdited, although American homes today have around three times the square footage as they did 50 years ago, we also lease an additional 2.2 billion square feet of storage space. What do you own that you haven’t used in the past year—or longer? It can probably go. It’s a good idea to make a sweep of your closets at least once a year to get rid of things that you no longer wear or use. You may be able to sell or consign items that are in very good shape, and you can make a tax-deductible donation of other usable items to any number of charities. Aside from de-cluttering your home, passing along things you don’t need to others who will use them also helps you reduce consumption and waste in your community.
2. Consider functionality.
Furniture takes up a lot of space, so make sure you’re getting the most out of it. Tables with removable leaves or ones that can be converted between dining and coffee table use can cut down your furniture needs, as can convertible pieces like futons and sofa beds. With the current trend toward simplification, more and more kinds of convertible furniture styles are hitting the market. Pinterest can give you lots of interesting ideas and examples of multifunctional furnishings.
3. Get serious about storage.
Wherever you see wasted space, consider how you can use it for storage. If you don’t opt for a futon or sofa bed, consider a bed with built-in drawers beneath the sleeping surface. Closet organizers can help you neatly stow more possessions out of sight, and corner shelving makes formerly useless space functional. Also, remember to make use of vertical space. Where practical, hang items on walls or inside of cabinet doors. If your cabinets don’t go all the way up to the ceiling, consider storing less-used items above them. Even those small areas between walls and furnishings or appliances can be great, sneaky places for narrow, roll-out shelving. Use your imagination to put the space you have to work!
4. Choose a great location.
If you’re just in the process of considering a move to a smaller space, then the location should be a top priority. If you’re in an area that you love and that has lots to do, then you’ll have less need to spend time inside your home. In addition to making it easier to keep your space neat and organized, it will help you feel less confined than if you spend the majority of your time there.
5. Prioritize amenities.
Hubbell Apartment living has a variety micro and other apartments available in downtown Des Moines and across the metro, with more coming soon! Click here to browse all of our apartment communities, and schedule a tour at your favorite today!