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How to Live in Small Spaces: 17 Tips & Tricks

Living in a small space? Whether you’re in a studio apartment or cramped with a family in a small house, there are plenty of ways to maximize the space that you have for a more comfortable living. Check out these 17 tips for getting organized and adding storage to your tiny home!

Declutter Your Home

Moving box in apartment. Photo by Instagram user @thenesttheory

Photo via @thenesttheory

When you have less room to work with, you’ll have to let go of some belongings. Not sure where to begin? Explore this guide on how to declutter your home for some good small space ideas. Throwing away broken things, donating household items, and parting with duplicate possessions are also good places to start.

Organize Storage Spaces

Small space storage has to be clever and creative—and that means getting the most out of every possible nook and cranny! Invest in storage containers like bins and baskets to organize valuable square footage. Not only will you better utilize the space, but it will make finding what you need easier as well. Whether it’s tackling closets, reorganizing your kitchen, or decluttering a storage room, implementing an organizational system is a crucial storage hack for maximizing each area.

Embrace Small Furniture

Nesting tables in small home. Photo by Instagram user @structube

Photo via @structube

If you’re trying to make the most of tiny space living, you’ll need furniture that fits! Oversized pieces take up a lot of space and can leave your home feeling cluttered, so opt for smaller items and space-saving furniture instead! Drop-leaf kitchen tables, storage ottomans, wall desks, compact chairs, and nesting tables are some of the best small apartment furniture pieces you can use to maximize your space.

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Expand Your Space With Mirrors

Mirror in small bedroom. Photo by Instagram user @styledwithlife

Photo via @styledwithlife

A classic small home design trick is to add mirrors to make spaces look bigger. This interior design tip for small spaces can work almost anywhere in your home, regardless of the size of the mirror. Play with reflective surfaces in your living room, entryway, bedroom, or kitchen decor to add depth to your living space.

Utilize Furniture with Exposed Legs

You can improve the flow of each room and make small spaces seem larger with exposed leg furniture. Whether it’s with a couch and coffee table in a small living room or a bed frame and dresser in a small bedroom, using furniture with exposed legs create the illusion of a more open room.

Maximize Vertical Space

Vertical wall storage in small apartment. Photo by Instagram user @kelseyannrose

Photo via @kelseyannrose

Want to find a way to expand your small space? You can make a room seem larger by utilizing vertical storage and choosing furniture that’s lower to the ground. Try hanging plants, decor, artwork, and shelves up high to take advantage of your entire space!

Install a Hideaway Desk

Organizing small living spaces can be extra tricky! That’s why furniture that can be tucked away when not in use is so beneficial for small space organization. Hideaway desks, Murphy beds, and other furniture that can be folded or put away offer an easy solution for those looking for more spacious small space living options.

Make the Most of Corners

Modern design apartment with plants. Photo by Instagram user @natalie_ranae

Photo via @natalie_ranae

Another small space idea is to maximize the corners of every room! Rather than placing tables, desks, and other furniture in the center of the room, try utilizing the corners in cramped areas to help make your space feel more open. Corner shelving is an especially clever storage hack for small apartment living!

Paint Walls a Light Color

Knowing how to choose paint colors for your home is always tough. But when it comes to designing small spaces, you’ll want to stick with light, airy colors to open things up. This is because neutral colors reflect more light and make a room feel larger. Avoid dark paint or overly bold wallpaper so that you don’t make your studio or tiny home feel cramped and cluttered.

Double Up with Bunk Beds

Living in small spaces with kids means you have to take quite a bit more into consideration. Fortunately, there are lots of small kids room ideas for you to try! If there aren’t enough bedrooms for everyone, bunk beds are a simple and versatile furniture solution to include in a shared kids room.

Opt for a Closet Nursery

Baby nursery in closet. Photo by Instagram user @emmeesau

Photo via @emmeesau

If you live in a small home with an infant or are raising a baby in a one-bedroom apartment, a closet nursery can make a great option! This creative small space living tip is an easy way to give you both your own distinct areas. Other small nursery ideas include ditching the changing table and putting a changing pad on top of a dresser, using a miniature crib, and many more!

Go with an Exposed Closet

An exposed closet is another space-saving idea perfect for cramped bedrooms. If you have a room with a closet, try removing the doors to free up square footage and give your room more of flow. Don’t have built-in closets? Hang shelving and bins to build an open closet right on your wall.

Get Creative with Kitchen Storage

Small apartment kitchen. Photo by Instagram user @flatwithcat

Photo via @flatwithcat

The first step to making a tiny kitchen functional is to declutter and organize. But you’ll need to get creative with storage spaces in your kitchen, too. With clever solutions like an island on wheels or pullout cabinets, you can maximize even the most cramped kitchens!

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Include a Bar Cart

Bar cart next to living room chair. Photo by Instagram user @laplazavillage

Photo via @laplazavillage

Investing in a rolling cart is a great living room storage idea or kitchen organization hack! Make up for your lack of counter space by using a bar cart in your kitchen to store small appliances or kitchen utensils. Or use a bar cart as a stylish end table next to a couch or chair in your living room.

Keep Experimenting

Small Dining Room Space with Lots of Decoration. Photo by Instagram user @pickersue_

Photo via @pickersue_

To make small space living work for you, adopt an experimental attitude. Try different layouts with your rooms or swap oversized items with space-saving furniture. You could also look into feng shui design or embrace the minimalist lifestyle to keep your living area decluttered. Don’t be afraid to mix it up!

Don’t Expect Perfection

Small Living Space with Loft Space Above Front Door. Photo by Instagram user @jethospitality

Photo via @jethospitality

Even with the best home organization tips and clever storage hacks, having less living space means your home won’t always be perfectly clean and organized. Giving yourself the freedom to let your tiny apartment get messy every now and again will provide some peace of mind!

Get Out of the House

Woman hiking near San Francisco, CA. Photo by Instagram user @raphiella_x3

Photo via @raphiella_x3

Going outside is always a good idea—and when you’re living in a tiny space, it’s even more important to get some fresh air from time to time! While it’s helpful to design and organize your home to get more space, there’s also more to do and see outside of your walls. Head out and explore!


Need extra space in your home? Extra Space Storage has self storage facilities across the U.S. with storage units that are perfect for storing items while you downsize or reduce clutter. Find a storage facility near you!

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