Compact Living 101: How to Select Furniture for a Small Living Space

There are many benefits to living in a small home or apartment. There is less to clean, little to maintain, fewer repairs to make, and you don’t have to pay for space you aren’t going to use. One of the challenges, however, is choosing and arranging furniture for that same compact living space.

Furniture in Compact Living Space

It’s important to have enough furniture for you to be comfortable, as well as entertain your friends and family. The challenge lays in selecting and arranging your furniture so that your living area doesn’t appear cluttered or is difficult to move around.

Here are some of our favorite tips and tricks for maximizing the use of your small home or office by selecting the best furniture for your space.

1. Start With Light Colors

It would be best to select light-colored furniture. The lighter the hue, the bigger your home will feel. This is by-far the easiest way to make each room more inviting, without having to do a lot of complicated rearranging of the furniture. This will give your room a more open feeling, even in the smallest of spaces.

If you already have darker furniture, then you can always add light-accents. A light-colored rug or a pair of curtains, for example, can make your home look roomier almost instantly.

2. Use Creative Organizational Tools

Buy shelving units and other organizational tools to get as many of your belongings off the floor. This will instantly increase the amount of floor space that you have available.

For example, wall-mounted shelving units or cubbies that fit over your desk are a great place to put items that might otherwise sit on the floor. Even a shoe rack that lets you store your footwear in a single convenient location can free up floor space and make it easier to move around a smaller home.

3. Explore Transforming Furniture

Transforming furniture is basically any piece of furniture that can function as two or more different items. Perhaps the most common example is a sofa bed or futon. During the day, it serves as a couch, but at night it can be folded out into a bed. Another popular dual-use appliance is a washer and dryer combo. This handy combination has the ability to both wash and dry your clothes, leaving you with more space to fold or iron your freshly cleaned apparel.

However, with the advent of both online and brick-and-mortar stores that specialize in providing furniture for small spaces, there are now many other transforming options to choose from. Some examples include stack able chairs that can be turned from one seat into two or more, and a table that folds up into the wall when not in use.

4. Use Smaller Appliances

This is another no-brainer for those that live in small spaces. Compact appliances function just like their full size counterparts, only they are smaller and take up less space. Whether you’re looking for a fridge or dishwasher, there is most likely a compact version of almost every appliance you need.

The easiest area for you to save space with smaller appliances, is in the kitchen. If you have little counter-top space, then you need to choose your appliances wisely. Fortunately, it’s not too difficult to save space in your small kitchen, yet still make it both convenient and attractive.

5. Choose Modern Furniture

Modern furniture styles tend to be slightly smaller and sleeker than their classical looking counterparts. For example, big plush sofas and overstuffed chairs are quite uncommon in modern designs, which are still quite comfortable to use and take up only a fraction of the space.

6. Don’t Buy Too Much

This advice may seem obvious, but you might be surprised to find out how often new home owners rush out and buy more furniture than they really need. Plan ahead and think it out.

Start by making a list of all the furniture you can envision in your home. Next, measure all of the available space you have in each room. Compare your space with the furniture on your list. This will give you a better idea of what you can comfortably fit in each area.

7. Buy Slow

As mentioned before, many homeowners rush out and buy too much furniture. Now that you’ve made your list of desired furniture, buy one piece at a time. It’s easy to imagine the furniture in your living space, but that doesn’t always match up with what it will really look like.

If you buy one piece at a time, you’ll be able to fully access if the other furniture you want will fit. You may discover that you have more space than you thought, and can then select a different piece. On the flip side, you may also discover you don’t have

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Jeff Flowers

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Jeff Flowers has been a self-described beer geek for over a decade now. When he's not chasing his daughter around, you can usually find him drinking a fresh brew and wasting too much of his time on both Google+ & Twitter.

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