As cities become more populated, living spaces are shrinking. Small-space living has been the norm in mega-cities like New York and Los Angeles for decades. However, now smaller cities are starting to feel the space-crunch. City councils across North America are making urban density a part of their future plans for growth. With those urban plans come more compact homes and a need for city dwellers to get more creative with their living spaces. Here are four of the most popular small space living solutions that help make the most of compact homes:
1) Dual-function rooms: No longer do city residents have the luxury of having an entire room devoted to a single purpose. Instead, rooms like the living room, kitchen, spare bedroom and den must pull double and even triple duty, serving multiple purposes. After-market contractors are creating living rooms that also serve as home office space or convert into guest quarters. Spare bedrooms and dens are also being made into home offices that serve as guest rooms when needed. Kitchens/dining room combos are common, as well as kitchens that double as laundry rooms. By making one room serve multiple purposes, home owners can live comfortably in smaller spaces and have the benefits that come with living in the city.
2) Convertible furniture: How about a coffee table that turns into a dining table that seats ten people, a couch that converts to a bunk bed or even a side table console that houses a kitty litter box? These are just a few examples of some of the highly innovative and creative pieces of convertible furniture that are available on the market and targeted toward small living spaces. Convertible furniture allows you to have all of the basic furniture pieces that you need for comfortable day-to-day living as well as pieces that you may only need to use on an occasional basis, such as when entertaining.
3) The customized closet: Closet customization is a growing market in the contracting business. A closet, which is essentially just a cavity in the walls of your home, can be converted into a highly-efficient space that allows a home owner to fit two, three and even four times the amount of clothing, household and personal items into the same amount of space. Some companies which specialize in closet conversions even offer three-dimensional designs via software. This software allows a home owner to view his customized closet in three dimensions, from all angles, during the planning phase.
4) Under-bed storage and other creative storage ideas: Empty space is wasted space in a city home or condo. Instead, home owners are making use of every bit of space, like under the bed and other pieces of furniture, walls and even ceilings, for storage. Under-furniture drawers are popular. They can be built-in, or free-standing versions can be purchased and simply slid underneath your existing furniture. Shelving makes use of otherwise unused wall space, and shelving can even be suspended from the ceiling.
Creative small space living solutions range in price, but there is a solution for every lifestyle and budget. Creative thinking is the key to making the most of every square and cubic foot of your compact urban home.