Freeing up space in your home can be a challenge. It’s hard when you’re already only hanging on to the essentials but still need to free up more space.
In this article, we talk about decluttering tips and design ideas that will help, and hopefully don’t cost you an arm and a leg (in fact, some might help you save money in the long run).
Decluttering is essential as more open space lets you breathe easily and can benefit your peace of mind. But sometimes, it isn’t about throwing stuff away, it’s more about making some smart design decisions that let you make the most of the space you already have.
1. Create Storage Space
Sometimes the extra clutter is about getting some extra storage space for the “essential but not needed right now” types of items. So, what can you do about creating more storage areas?
Most people put away the rainy-day items and extras in a loft, laundry room, or dedicated storage. This is often the place with a boiler and/or washing machine reside. Organizing your laundry baskets and items can free up a lot of room for other items.
Similarly, new boilers can be more compact and, since they require fewer parts, they open up a lot of space you could use for something else. Combi boilers are best at saving space and are ideal for homes with a single bathroom (homes with multiple showers might want to spring for a system boiler instead).
The average central heating installation cost in the UK can be mitigated by subsidies (check with your installer if you are eligible for one). That way, your new boiler can be cheap, effective, and efficient, allowing you to install a cheaper system while also getting rid of unnecessary elements and pipework to create more space.
Freeing up space is one of the best ways to stop your house from becoming cluttered. Other storage ideas include:
- Under-bed storage is an excellent place to stow away seasonal clothing, extra bedding, or sentimental items you don’t need daily access to.
- Over-the-door organizers can work wonders in closets for storing shoes, accessories, and small personal items.
- Look for furniture that has built-in storage, such as ottomans with compartments, beds with drawers, or coffee tables with shelves.
- Vertical stackable bins are a great way to organize and store items vertically, especially in closets or garages.
2. Think Vertical
Why broaden your furniture space when you can think vertically? Vertical bookshelves, storage areas, and expansions allow you to tuck away items in the upper recesses of your home while still keeping them within arm’s length if need be.
Installing shelves up to the ceiling can provide a place for items that you don’t use daily but still want to keep. Wall-mounted racks and hooks can hold anything from bicycles to gardening tools, freeing up precious floor space.
With a few choice hangings and bookshelves, unutilized wall space can be an effective way to store items that would otherwise take up table or counter space. Use the empty walls to provide adequate space for books, pictures, and decorative items.
3. Understair Storage Conversions
If you have a potential space underneath your stairs (preferably one that is stable and non-load-bearing), you could convert it into an extra spot for keeping additional items. With a bit of clever craftsmanship, you can build in a cabinet, an extra closet, or even a reading nook.
These are obviously not viable for every house and you will need to consult a builder to assess the underspace of your stairs. However, it can be a great idea that doesn’t always cost an arm and a leg, though your mileage may vary.
4. Covert Stash Spots
A few choice furniture additions can help with decluttering and keep things hidden away. There are a lot of ways this can be done, from stools with extra storage to couches with hidden cabinets. When it comes to clutter, sometimes “out of sight, out of mind” is the way to go.
Furniture that serves more than one purpose can save a ton of space. Ottomans with storage space can hold games, blankets, or books while providing extra seating. Beds with drawers utilize the under-bed space efficiently, and drop-leaf tables can be extended for dining and folded down to serve as console tables.
5. Open Storage Over Closed Cabinets
Sometimes freeing up space means eliminating boundaries. Close drawers and cabinets can often have bulky frames that prevent them from reaching their full potential.
Why not keep cupboards open plan, adding an extra tier, and turning a closed cabinet into a more elaborate and beautiful storage space where everything is easily accessible?
It also opens up the floor for cleaning and more storage while decreasing the visual clutter as well as the physical. Streamlining a small bathroom can do wonders for the feeling of a house and imbuing it with modern design.
6. Wall-Integrated Storage & Banquette Seating
Instead of standalone furniture, we can integrate the room elements into the structure of the room. While a bold choice to make, this opens up a lot of possibilities and centralized room space. Banquette seating instead of couches along with wall-integrated desks and shelves can give a room a purposeful aesthetic as well.
Banquettes can also be equipped with even more drawers while being a stylish element. While the example above shows a study, these ideas are equally applicable to bedrooms, living rooms, and storage as long as the designer keeps the purpose of the room in mind and builds around it.
7. Digitize Where Possible
In today’s digital age, there’s no need to keep stacks of CDs, DVDs, or documents. Digitizing these items can save a significant amount of storage space.
Scan important documents and store them securely in the cloud, and consider music and video streaming services to keep your entertainment clutter-free.
8. Rotate Items Seasonally
Seasonal rotation isn’t just for clothing. Decor, kitchenware, and even books can be rotated to match the season or your mood. This not only keeps your space fresh but also reduces the amount of stuff on display at any given time and frees up storage space.
Also, to maintain a decluttered home, adopt the one-in-one-out rule. For every new item that comes into your home, one should go out. This doesn’t mean you have to throw things away; you can donate, sell, or repurpose the outgoing item.
9. Rent a Storage Unit
If you have items you can’t bear to part with but don’t have space at home, consider renting a storage unit. This can be a good solution for things like seasonal sports equipment or sentimental items that you want to keep but don’t need access to regularly.
Hopefully, these designs and decluttering tips have given you some new ideas you can apply to your home. Creating a space free of clutter need not be difficult or expensive (though it sometimes is) but is important for peace of mind.
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