The hardest part of preparing to move into a smaller space is undoubtedly deciding what to toss and what to keep. In fact, the tortuous process of sifting through all the trinkets and keepsakes you’ve accumulated throughout the years is enough to make it feel like the movie isn’t even worth it. But once you’ve eliminated some stress of the belongings that were weighing you down, how should you make the most of your new-but-tinier kingdom? Here are some additional secrets to help with that. 

Take Inventory: What Would You Replace If It Were All Gone

Whether you’re hiring professional movers in Laval or moving your possessions yourself, you’ll have to cut some of your possessions if you want to fit into a smaller space. Many people find this threatening, but keep in mind that most of us own more than we realize. The furniture we don’t need, old boxes in the garage, and cupboards full of deceased kitchen items create an easy opportunity to downsize smartly. Before you do anything—before you even move and know how much space you have to move into, the first thing to do is take a close inventory of your belongings. Ask yourself, If everything you owned was lost in a fire, what would you replace? Take stock of the things that are actually important to you, and the things that you could live without, or could actually replace or downsize along with your living space.

Never Duplicate, If You Can Help It

We mentioned that if you’re moving into a smaller space with someone, making sure you go over your inventories together is essential. The last thing you want to do when trying to combine two households is to find out that you’ve both brought two full sets of dishes, flatware, glasses, or worse, large items like chairs, couches, desks, and so on. This is where it’s even more important to have a home inventory in-hand before you move, and that you both sit down and make decisions on the things you want to keep, who brings the dishes and who brings the glasses, who brings the bed and who brings the couches.

Utilize Storage Space

Rent a storage space as a last resort. There are times when renting storage space makes sense: if you think you might move again into a larger space within the next year or so, or if you simply need to buy yourself more time before letting go of everything. Just remember, you are literally buying yourself time, and that time can get expensive. Choose the smallest space possible and give yourself a deadline to decide what to do with the stuff.

Ways to Maximize Space in a Small Apartment

Clutter accumulates in every home, but in a studio apartment, it can quickly fill up the little existing storage space you have. So how do you maximize space in a room the size of a shoebox? With just a few clever tricks and habits, you can learn to become just enough of a minimalist to keep your clutter at bay and your studio apartment look spacious and clean. No matter how many pairs of shoes you own, or how many sweaters are stored in your oven, you, too, can take a small space and make it your own—it just requires a little savvy and know-how. Here are simple ways to maximize space in your studio apartment.

Create Hidden Storage

If your space is closet-challenged, create storage where there is none. Choose a bed with high legs or under-bed storage, and store items underneath. Lookup for more storage areas—if the cabinets in your kitchen don’t extend all the way to the ceiling, store entertaining pieces like a cake stand or oversize platter in the space

Purge Often

Anything unnecessary—be it an article of clothing, a handful of reusable grocery totes, or an old wine rack—that you’re not using should be removed from the premises immediately. If you haven’t used your ironing board in the last year, get rid of it. If you don’t host dinner parties, you don’t need a dozen wine glasses. If you never go to the beach, why are those beach towels taking up precious closet space? It’s easy to accumulate stuff, so take stock of your collections frequently. Purge unnecessary belongings at least twice a year. If you come across something you haven’t used in a while, don’t put it back where it was. 

Go Vertical

When you haven’t seen your floors in a while, it’s time to get creative with vertical storage. Every inch of space counts in a small apartment. Maximizing your wall space on your walls is possible with wall organizers that look more like artwork and floating furniture than storage. The attic under your metal roof could also serve as great storage for all the extra things you don’t need.

Build your own command center or workspace with a variety of wall cubes with baskets, caddies, pinboards, and hooks. Baskets and caddies hold all sorts of odds and ends from books to office supplies. Also, hooks aren’t just meant for coats. Hang your headphones and charging cords on hooks to keep them from getting tangled and stepped on. You might only have a sliver of available wall space, but don’t worry! Add a narrow floor-to-ceiling bookcase to get items up off the floor. You’ll feel like you just added on another room. For the bulkiest items, like your bike, specially designed wall-mounted bike racks turn your entryway into your very own transportation hub, complete with built-in shelving to hold your helmet and gloves

Go Small

Proportion counts in a small space, too. One large piece of furniture in a room can actually trick your eye into thinking space is larger than it is. But this primarily works with one main piece. The other furniture should be small in proportion. Small furniture includes slim upholstered pieces and tables that don’t compromise on style or function while still fitting into compact footprints. Consider small dining tables with leaves that fold down to conserve space. Make use of corners with corner desks, tables, and storage units. By the time you’ve integrated all these practical pieces into your apartment, you’ll have used every square foot of space beautifully – with additional floor space to spare.