Ideas for saving space and creating additional storage in a small home, town home, or condo.
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When we lived in our condo, saving room and being smart about our storage space was key. We didn’t have the money at the time to move into a larger home and we had a very busy son who was into everything. We needed to keep some things out of the way and we also didn’t want to pay for a storage unit. So we improvised and Pinterest ideas were my friend. We ended up doing a number of things to save space over the years we were there and I wanted to take a moment to share those ideas with you.
Ideas for Space Saving Renovations for a Small Condo
Make Use of Unused Spaces
We had this awkward space on the right side of our fireplace. When I moved in, I decided that would be a perfect space for shelving and storage.
I hired a contractor to add shelving and a door to the area, as well as an electrical outlet. Eventually we also had our flat screen television mounted above the fireplace. My only thought now is that the space was fairly warm with electronics in it (once the TV was mounted in there, we put video game systems on the shelves). Open shelving might have allowed for more air flow and a more open look.
Mount the TV
Mounting the television helped save a lot of space for us. My husband came to me with a huge TV. HUGE. It took up a lot of space on the floor. We ended up having it mounted- something that required professional install at the time due to it being over the fireplace and so, so heavy. But these days, mounting televisions can be fairly simple to DIY.
These shelves were awesome for holding smaller items and keeping them away from the kids. We still use them in some rooms of our home.
|Over the Door Shelf Tutorial|
Tear Down Walls if Possible
We had a really awkward space for our HVAC system and washer/dryer unit. The original washer and dryer unit was from the early 1980’s and a huge expense for electricity. Unfortunately, it was difficult to find another unit that fit perfectly and we were starting to do a lot more laundry than normal because we had a young child and we were cloth diapering. The wall between the HVAC and the W/D stacking unit took up a lot of unnecessary space.
It’s hard to tell in the pictures below because I don’t have a good landscape photo of the area, but there’s a wall in between and barely room to breathe around the washer and dryer unit.
The big deal here is that you don’t want to remove a load bearing wall and you will need approval from the condo association to remove any structural portion of your home. We went through a process to do this, but our neighbor had mentioned also doing this so we knew it was possible.
Once we got our approvals, we hired a contractor to remove the wall and we added a new, better stacking washer/dryer. We also had a lot more room for storage. You can’t see it very well, but to the left of the washer and dryer are two stacking IKEA shelves. We were able to store toilet paper, paper towels, etc in there.
While we didn’t install these ourselves, these were an addition the previous owner made to the hall closet. They added a lot of shelving to the closet, giving us space to store items like books. I noticed that another owner removed the doors on their closet, leaving it open, and added under cabinet lighting. There are a lot of options. But making intelligent decisions about closets and shelving can help save space.
Adding nice baskets to the shelves is a good way to make more storage space as well.That said, the bottom portion was sort of wasted space. It was good for items like a vacuum cleaner, but not much use otherwise. The closet wasn’t deep enough to allow other types of storage containers to fit in there. I’d probably rebuild the shelves if I still lived there, similar to how we did our master closet renovation.
I took advantage of this space for my sewing equipment and fabric.
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Danielle Pientka is the sewing and DIY blogger behind DIYDanielle.com. She taught herself to sew in 2011 when she wanted to make cloth diapers for her first son. She’s been sewing everything from ecofriendly items to kids products to clothing since, as it has become a passion. She loves learning how to do new things and teaching others in the process. She hopes to inspire other moms to take time for themselves to find their own creative passion.
Danielle lives in Maryland with her three young sons and her husband, Brandon. In her spare time, she gardens, reads, horseback rides, and has a small homestead with goats and ducks. Visit her shop to buy patterns or her sewing eBooks. Subscribe to her newsletter to get blog updates, free patterns and other printables by clicking here.