Downsizing Your Home: 15 Tips for Moving to a Smaller Place

Small space
Photo Credit: Nicolás Boullosa

With carbon footprints on our minds these days, it’s no surprise that more and more of us are deciding to live smaller and lighter.

There’s an entire movement dedicated to downsizing living space, which requires being much more critical about how much stuff one really needs.

Are you interested in going smaller but not sure how you’d manage it? Here are 15 stellar tips to show you that it really is possible:

  1. Measure the new space to get a sense of what will and won’t fit
  2. Trade your furniture out for smaller, lower-profile versions
  3. Purge as you move, keeping only what you love and will definitely have room for
  4. Use vertical space by installing tall bookcases and loft beds, and hanging shelves, racks, and cabinets
  5. Multi-task furniture by having storage space in every piece possible, like under the bed and in the ottoman, and using convertible pieces like futons and fold-up tables
  6. Use every space, like backs of doors, above kitchen cabinets, and under furniture
  7. Double-up room uses, such as using a futon or fold-out to change your living room into a guest room when needed
  8. Go paperless, especially on high-volume items like magazines and newspapers
  9. Pare down your book collection, retaining only those you can’t easily borrow elsewhere or you really love having at hand
  10. Rent or borrow anything you don’t use often, like camping gear, ski stuff, and power tools
  11. Get smaller versions of appliances and electronics, like a stick blender instead of a countertop blender, and a laptop instead of a desktop
  12. Mount small appliances, stemware, and paper towels under the kitchen cabinets
  13. Wall-mount your TV
  14. Rig up your computer to do double-duty as a multi-media entertainment system
  15. Use stackable, sealable plastic containers to store everything from groceries to linens

The growing interest in going small-scale means there’s plenty more advice out there online. A few quick searches for downsizing, scaling down, tiny house movement, loft living, and other similar terms will deliver a flood of ideas.

Furniture makers that specialize in helping you use space efficiently, such as IKEA and Resource Furniture, can also help you brainstorm.

With a few good ideas, some wise changes, and a little elbow grease, you’ll be living small in no time.

Photo: Nicolás Boullosa

One thought on “Downsizing Your Home: 15 Tips for Moving to a Smaller Place

  1. These are all really good tips!

    My husband and I don’t have a lot of space in our house, and we have 2 desktop computers. A full computer desk for each of us would take up way too much space, so we’ve mounted our monitors and created mini-desks. My mini-desk is a large shelf with plenty of room for me to work, and his is the top of a rolling laptop desk he took apart. It might not look that great, but definitely saves on space.

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