Life in the big city is expensive. One way to save money is to take a smaller apartment than what you may be used to. Unfortunately, that can leave you feeling like a sardine in a can.
Want to maximize your space on a minimum budget? Here are some helpful suggestions for making even the tiniest patch of Manhattan real estate feel roomy and open.
Take Advantage of Natural Light Sources
Nothing makes an apartment feel cramped and inhospitable like poor lighting. At the same time, covering every corner and desk in your home with lamps deprives you of precious space. That’s why it’s better to rely on natural light sources as much as possible. Throwback the curtains and raise the blinds to let sunlight fill your room. In the city, even the night provides plenty of illumination thanks to the lights of neighboring buildings, streetlamps, and neon signs. Even better, make the most out of any light source with a few strategically placed wall mirrors.
Choose Multitaskers Over Unitaskers
Multitasking isn’t just a virtue in the workplace, but in the home as well. By contrast, a unitasker is any item in your apartment that only serves one specific purpose. Any Alton Brown fan knows how easy it is for kitchens to be overrun by such things, but turn a critical eye to other rooms as well. For example, instead of using a simple coffee table or nightstand that’s just four legs and a surface, opt for designs that integrate shelving or other storage options.
Stay Organized to Reduce Excess Clutter
The bane of every home’s existence, regardless of size, is clutter. A lack of organization can make even the largest manor feel like a closet, and the effect on a small apartment is even more pronounced. Not only is clutter unsightly and prone to cause confusion, it can also trip you up and cause all kinds of accidents. It pays to keep things as orderly as possible. Try to find a place for everything, from household appliances to paperwork to books and movies, then stick to it. Last but not least, don’t let your garbage build up over time; throw that trash away!
Make Good Use of Nooks and Crannies
Waste not, want not. When space is limited every inch is precious, so make the most of it by using every little nook and cranny. Running out of shelf space? Don’t forget that the very tip-top of a shelf or wardrobe can be used for storage as well. Similarly, the area above a door frame can be used for certain items, though you should avoid anything heavy or fragile if the frame is too slender. Protip: door-hanging shoe organizers can be used for just about anything, from umbrellas to toiletries to pantry items.