Living with limited space comes with challenges, but feeling uncomfortable in your home doesn’t have to be one of them. With a good eye and a few tricks up your sleeve, you can make a small apartment or house functional and beautiful. There’s always room for your stamp of personal style, and here are a few ways to make sure it shines through.
Define Each Area
3245 Hugo Place | Dallas – Uptown | $649,900
Many properties with limited square footage are designed with an open floor plan to make the space feel larger. The downside of this design is that the boundaries which normally define the purpose of an area aren’t there. Your office may be a corner of your living room, or your dining room may be no more than a bar area in your kitchen. But just because there aren’t many walls doesn’t mean you can’t separate rooms by their function. In this room, the dining and living areas feel separate thanks to the inward-facing furnishings that help define the space.
Employ Multipurpose Furniture
3552 Cedar Plaza Lane | Dallas – Park Oaks | $425,000
In a large home, you have the luxury of buying an end table that’s just an end table—no drawers, shelves or hidden compartments, just a surface that calls for a lamp and decor. But in a small space, you learn to think with ingenuity. Look for ottomans with a storage compartment, a coffee table with shelves, or even a bed frame with drawers. If you fill this normally wasted space, you don’t have to squeeze storage elsewhere.
Trick the Eye
2111 Clark Street, Unit G | Dallas – Uptown | $519,000
Reflective and transparent surfaces can give the perspective of added space, and they can also bring more light into a room with a small window. Consider installing clear cabinets in the kitchen or hanging a large mirror in the living room. A clear shower curtain can open up a small bathroom.
Invite the Light
5055 Addison Circle, No. 424 | Addison | $329,800
Natural light and light colors are both known to give the illusion of more space. Pale, neutral colors like ivory, light gray, and beige reflect more light than dark colors do. If you’re worried about the space looking drab, remember that a neutral palette makes bright or dark accent pieces pop even more. When it comes to sunlight, big windows can make a world of difference in a small room. Consider replacing your windows, or swap a solid door for a glass-paned one.
Customize Your Storage
9081 6th Street | Frisco – Historic District | $450,000
While it would be nice if every small place came with a whole wall of built-in shelves to make up for the lack of hidden storage, sometimes we have to make do with what we have. If you can’t find space for your books, turn them into a dining room decoration. If there’s not enough closet space for your shoes, display them on a shoe rack. While a shortage of storage may be a sign that you need to pare down, sometimes it’s just a sign that you need to get creative.
Turn Tiny into Cozy
1626 Loree Drive | East Dallas – Alger Park | $295,000
You may be afraid to overdo it with the furnishings, and it’s true that clutter is the last thing a tight space needs. But leaving the space plain doesn’t do it any favors, either. So embrace the smallness and use warm colors and bright patterns to make it feel like a cozy nook rather than a cupboard under the stairs
Bryn Huntpalmer is a mother of two young children living in Austin, Texas where she currently works as an editor and writer for Modernize.com with the goal of empowering homeowners with the expert guidance and educational tools they need to take on big home projects with confidence.