How to Save Money and Make the Most of Your Space in a Small Home

At Element One, when helping homeowners prepare their home to sell, helping them live in a staged home can be one of the biggest challenges.  What to do with all their “stuff”?   This month, we’re featuring guest blogger Julian Lane of The Fixit Champ. In his blog, Julian generally focuses on DIY projects and emphasizes safety through proper use of tools and equipment. Here, he offers a few creative storage solutions you can use in small areas to maximize both space and money.

There are certainly advantages to living in a small home, such as charm and less daunting cleaning tasks. However, a small home also means you have less space to store items, which can easily lead to minimalism or a cluttered home with no room to walk. Fortunately, you don’t have to choose one extreme or the other. There are ways to maximize the space in your home so you don’t have to get rid of all your belongings — and you can save money while you do it.

Affordable, Stylish Storage

First thing, open your mind about the storage options out there. You can find stylish bins, boxes, organizers, tubs, cabinets, shelving units, etc. at many major retailers — and it doesn’t have to be expensive. What’s more, you can usually find coupons and take advantage of promo codes for stores such as Crate and Barrel to help you save money.

If you have a creative side, try your hand at some DIY projects. You can convert all kinds of furniture, fixtures, and other items into storage options. For instance, replacing the drawers in a dresser with baskets makes for a clever and stylish storage piece. Turning your wooden step ladder from the garage into a towel rack brings a rustic vibe to your bathroom. One of the best overall storage projects is to find old milk crates, throw a coat of chalk paint on them, and use them as storage throughout your home.

Multipurpose Furniture

Another budget-friendly way to optimize space is to invest in multipurpose furniture. When your furniture pieces can be used for various things, you quickly realize that you don’t need as much furniture. So, sell some of your furniture that isn’t multipurpose and use that money to get multifunction pieces. What’s more, you can save cash by checking out clearance sales and using online coupons for retailers like Bed, Bath, and Beyond to cut costs.

Here are some more examples of what to look for:

These are just a few of many multipurpose furniture options. Do some research online, and you’ll likely find anything you need.

Replacing Items

Another strategy to make the most of your space is to edit as you go. This means that anytime you bring in a new item, throw out an item of similar size. For example, if you purchase a stylish storage bin for under your bathroom sink, get rid of the storage piece that was under there. If you happen to come across a sleek-looking bedroom dresser, plan to sell or give away the dresser that’s currently in your bedroom. In other words, replace, don’t add. This can even apply to anything else you could spend money on. When you know you will have to let something go to bring something new in, it tends to make you more mindful of your purchases.

Using Vertical Space

Vertical space is your best asset when it comes to small homes — more specifically, the walls. With the use of wall-mounted shelves, hooks, and other budget-friendly storage options, you can keep all kinds of items accessible, such as plates, pots and pans, dry goods, toilet paper, or even your bicycle. Don’t hesitate to put things over the doors in your home; that’s a quick way to add decor and maximize space in every room. Furthermore, hanging art above eye level is a good trick for making your ceilings look a lot higher!

Less storage space doesn’t mean you have to throw all of your belongings out. It just means you have to get creative with how you store things. Check major retailers for inexpensive, stylish storage options. Sell your old furniture and invest in multipurpose pieces. Replace items instead of adding them, and make the most of your vertical space.

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