Storage is a hot topic for many households. There never seems to be enough, especially in modern homes, where storage is often at a premium.
But, knowing how to create more storage space at home will help you declutter and free up more of your living space for things that matter.
Here we look at 18 ways to easily create more storage space, but first, let’s look at the problem a little closer.
Research by LABC Warranty shows that modern homes have got smaller every decade since the 1970s. The average newly built property now measures just 67.8 square meters. That’s the quarter of the size of a tennis court.
Since 2010, the average new build has decreased even more, by a total of four square metres, putting space at a premium. Properties also now have an average of just 2.6 bedrooms, compared to an average of 3.53 bedrooms in the 1970s.
In addition to having less space, people’s higher disposable income means that we now have more than possessions than ever. With smaller homes and more belongings, it has created a storage crisis for many homes.
However, if your home is is suffering from lack of storage space, there is good news. There are some simple steps you can take to increase storage in your home.
What makes a great storage solution?
When thinking about storage, a good storage solution achieves three things: it creates more space; it streamlines organisation by storing similar items together; and it makes things easier to find when you want them.
Hallways can often be untidy with shoes and coats everywhere. Solve that problem with some of these options:
- Shoe racks: loose shoes scattered across the floor can be a real bugbear. Shoe racks can be installed in hallways or under the stairs to keep shoes tidy and out of the way.
- A console: another option is to create a full length storage unit that combines a shoe rack with hanging space for coats and even shelving for boxes for gloves, hats and scarves.
Understairs cupboards / downstairs cloakrooms
- Over-the-door coat hooks: if you’ve got a downstairs cloakroom or an under-the-stairs cupboard then over-the-door hanging hooks are a simple way to add storage for coats. Simply hook them over the door for instant hanging space.
- Understairs cupboard: if your stairs don’t currently have a cupboard underneath, why not create one by boxing in the space? Add shelving and shoe racks to make the most of the space and use of over the door hanging hooks for coats.
Living rooms and lounges
- Ottomans: suitable for any room in the house, ottomans combine style with practicality. Large and deep, they have plenty of space for storing a wide range of items, and can double up as seating or a coffee table too. They can be made in a range of materials and even upholstered to match your other furnishings.
- Footstools and coffee tables: speaking of coffee tables, if you’re going to have one or a footstool anyway, then why not have it double up as storage? There are plenty of options available with internal space or, in some cases, shelving.
- Recesses: if you’re in a home with a fireplace, or have a wall where a fireplace used to be, then chances are that there are recesses on either side. These can be used to fit cupboards to make the most of the space without sacrificing floor space.
- Pot racks: these can either be on the wall or hanging from the ceiling for hanging your pots and pans out of the way, so saving valuable cupboard space.
- Racks: in-cupboard racking is a great way to make the most of cupboard space. These are especially useful for storing smaller items, such as herbs and spices.
- Boxed-in space: for more storage, why not box in the space around the sink to store all those bathroom essentials? It’s a handy way of making use of otherwise wasted space.
- Towel rack: a wall-mounted towel rack is a useful way of storing towels in an attractive and practical manner.
- Storage bed: typically the bedroom is often the room that needs maximum storage the most, thanks to the number of clothes and shoes that many people now own. Yet fitting in adequate furniture can be tricky, especially in modern homes. That’s where storage beds, also known as ottoman beds, are a great and simple solution for storing all kinds of items.
- Cabin and high sleeper beds: ideal for children’s bedrooms, cabin and high sleeper beds allow you to add cupboards, drawers and hanging space underneath without increasing the floor space of the bed. They’re perfect for box rooms. If the room is over the stairs and you’re dealing with the slope created by the ceiling of the stairs, a custom fitted bed makes the most of the available space.
- Under bed storage: if a storage, cabin, or high sleeper bed aren’t an option, then try making the most of the space under your bed. Plastic boxes or zip-up bags are two options for all kinds of belongings.
- Vacuum bags: when it comes to clothes, an alternative possibility to plastic boxes or standard zip-up bags are vacuum bags, which are a great space saving option. These work by using your vacuum cleaner to suck out the air, compressing the items into the smallest possible space.
- Suitcases: if you’ve got suitcases hanging around, as many of us do, then they’re an ideal way to store items that you don’t need to use on a daily basis, for example seasonal clothes or bedclothes.
- Fitted wardrobes: fitted wardrobes make the most of the space available in your bedroom, by using every inch of it. Hanging rails, drawers, shelving and shoe racks can all be included to maximise every inch of available space.
- Shelving: shelving can be fitted almost anywhere in the home and offers storage without taking up floor space. Whether it’s the hallway, the kitchen, the lounge or the bedroom, shelving is a simple storage solution that anyone can fit easily.
As can be seen, however small your living space, there are simple storage solutions that will make a real difference to your home and the space you have available.