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How to Furnish and Decorate a Small Home: 10 Tips

So you’re in a small home. You don’t have as much room as you’d like, and it’s getting in the way of creating your ideal space. Don’t worry — there are still ways to furnish, decorate and store your stuff, even if you have to go to some unorthodox lengths to do it.

1. Scale your furniture to the size of your home

If your furniture is really large and takes up most of the space throughout your home, it shouldn't be a surprise that your space feels small. Getting smaller furniture will take up less room and feel more proportional.

2. Think in cubic feet, not square feet

You have vertical space, so use it. Hang your curtains high, use shelves as storage, hang things from hooks on the wall, or anything else you can think of to use your vertical space. Your rooms will appear taller, and therefore less cramped.

3. Use furniture that serves more than one purpose

If you don’t have a lot of space, then fill the space with items that do many things. This is the secret of the ottoman; it’s a seat, storage space and looks nice, winning across the board. If you fill your home with furniture that serves more than one purpose, you’ll need less of it and will feel less cramped.

4. Don’t have as much stuff

This is almost cheating, but still a good tip to follow. The less furniture and other items you have, the more space you’re left with. Periodically purge and declutter your home and you’ll have much more room.

5. Use brighter colors

Brightness helps a small space feel much wider. Paint (if allowed) and decorate with bright colors. Dark colors tend to cause rooms to feel more cramped, so avoid them if you can.

6. Take advantage of natural light

This follows the above tip. The more natural light you have, the more open the space feels.

7. Use furniture that can easily be moved

If things get a little cramped, being able to move furniture, such as tables and chairs, easily can open up some space.

8. Have space between your furniture and the walls

We've talked about this before, but it's important to repeat. Contrary to what you'd probably expect, putting your furniture up against a wall actually makes a room feel smaller, not larger.

9. Use any and all space for storage

Is there any space in your home you’re not using? Turn it into storage area. The space between a shelf and the floor in a closet or a hard to reach cabinet are perfect examples.

10. Remove doors (if allowed)

Opening doors can make your rooms feel continuous and much larger, but an open door can take up quite a bit of space. Removing these will let you keep the open feeling without taking up as much real estate. Make sure to check with your landlord or property manager first before removing any to make sure they'll allow it.

Having a small home doesn’t mean it has to feel cramped. Following these tips can make a small space feel much larger, but most importantly like it’s yours.

Categories: Renters

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About the Author
Steffi Cook

Steffi Cook is the head of content for Rentals.com. When she’s not writing or editing, you can find her on the tennis court, hiking in the mountains or trying a new restaurant.