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Can You Have It All In Under 500 Square Feet?
Move into a new home these days and you’ll be forgiven for thinking you’ve grown somewhat - it’s a fact that the average house in the UK is getting smaller, as space for new-build homes becomes more of a premium and developers try to cram in as many bedrooms and bathrooms as they can to increase profits and make their houses more appealing.
But living in smaller rooms doesn’t necessarily mean you have to live any less - there are ways and means by which you can both create the feeling of space and use what little room you have to its full advantage. Here are just a few tips on how to make the most of the space you are given.
Choose the right furniture: There’s little point having a huge, six-seater sofa in a tiny living room. Pick smaller furniture - say, a two-seater rather than one with room for three - and place it against the walls to preserve the little floor space you have. And remember less is more - the less clutter you have in any room of the house, the bigger it will appear.
Modular furniture, which can be adapted or changed if necessary, is also a good idea. A fold-down or extending dining table is ideal, especially if you don’t use it every day, while a sofa bed or other foldaway bed in the spare room will give you the illusion of more space when not in use.
Storage is key: Clever storage solutions will enable you to have as much ‘stuff’ in your house as someone with a bigger home. Under-bed storage is an obvious choice. Also consider built-in wardrobes and bookshelves, or taller units, which enable you to fit more into a smaller floor space. Walls are under-used spaces - try adding more shelving.
In the kitchen, you should use the walls to the full - kitchen cabinets which conceal appliances such as the fridge and washing machine will make your kitchen look larger than it is. Even tiny bathrooms can hold a surprising number of items, given the right storage units. Again, taller or wall-mounted cupboards will give you more floor space, and you can also buy units which fit under your sink to use up usually redundant room.
Decorate to accumulate: And it’s not just about the furniture - how you decorate your home will also help you make it seem larger than it really is. In general, lighter colours create the feeling of space more than darker hues, while fussy patterns and stripes will make a room seem smaller.
Mirrors can be used in cramped rooms such as hallways and landings to give the illusion of space, and the right lighting will also make a room seem more spacious - darker rooms always look smaller than lighter ones.