Many people today are making the choice to downsize their homes. There are certainly many pros to this decision (ie: cost, ease, environmental footprint). Having a smaller place can truly save you a lot of time, money and energy. These are important factors to any family and for these reasons among others, downsizing is becoming more and more popular.
However, downsizing means that you will of course have less space. Almost everyone who is moving into a smaller space struggles with figuring out how to live in this new space without feeling cramped. It’s easy to get frustrated and feel like there is simply no way for you to adjust to this change. The truth is that when planned properly, it’s quite easy to create a usable and spacious downsized home that doesn’t feel overcrowded.
Here are some ideas that anyone can use to best utilize a small space and make it feel like a pleasant home for both you and your family.
When you are living in a small space there’s less room for your family to carry on with their typical day-to-day activities. Try designating areas in each room of the house for specific activities, so life doesn’t get messy and distracting. For example, you might choose to place your home office in the guest room to save space. Try separating the office area from the guest room by putting up dividers and facing your desk away from the guest bed.
It can be surprising how many little wasted spaces there are around your home. To best organize the layout of your downsized home you can use these forgotten spaces as smart storage that’s both hidden and easily accessible. Some examples include the space beneath your bed and high shelving in your garage. Floor space runs out quickly, but you can always utilize high vertical shelving options or even simple solutions like hanging baskets to make use of empty overhead space without taking over your limited floor space. You might even decide to mount your kitchen appliances to the wall to create more counter space.
Because you’ve transitioned into a smaller home you are by default creating less energy waste with less energy use. You may think that there is little else you can do to make your home more energy efficient, but there are always other useful upgrades to think about. You can utilize things like engineered hardwood flooring, solar power, insulation, grey water systems, and energy efficient roofing options that can create a beautiful home with less impact on the environment and your utility bills.
If you still feel like the space in your small house looks cramped, you can use a few simple design tricks to create the illusion that your space looks larger and more open. Try letting in more natural light through soft colored curtains, installing a new skylight, or using large mirrors around your home to reflect light and add dimension.