4 ways to Maximize your Square Footage

While it can be nice to have a larger home, many of us live in much older homes, built early in the previous century, with smaller floor plans that reflect the routines of a different era. We are used to living areas that are considerably smaller. So how do you make a smaller home feel bigger? If you have limited space, consider these design solutions to improve the livability of your home.

1. Fake a foyer. Does your front door open right into the living room?  You can still create the feel of a foyer by introducing some space-defining elements. The partial-height wall, oversize post and bench can keep the entryway from spilling into the dining area beyond. A lowered ceiling and decorative lights can further define the space within the larger room.

2. Create movable walls. Full-height sliding doors can be a great way to create separate, flexible spaces for sleeping and living. This strategy can be particularly useful for small alcoves off larger rooms. Large sliding doors can be very easy to move, but they can also be very heavy! The doors typically hang from a track that needs to be securely attached to a wall or ceiling. You’ll need to provide a concealed guide at the floor to prevent the door from swinging out at the base.

3. Just one bathroom? Add another door. Only one bathroom is a common challenge in older houses. Can you still have a master bathroom if it’s the only bathroom in the house? Or maybe the bathroom can be reached only through your bedroom. Adding a door between the bedroom and the reconfigured bathroom creates the functionality of a master suite while allowing access from the hall.

**When laying out multiple doors in a small bathroom, their locations need to be planned carefully so the doors don’t bang into each other. Pocket doors may be useful if space is tight.

4. Go easy on the uppers. Wall-hung cabinets above the counter are one of the most common features in kitchen design. But having too many upper cabinets in a small kitchen can make the space feel confined. Consider replacing those blank boxes with something more unexpected, such as open shelving or a bank of windows. This change can transform a dark kitchen into your favorite room in the house.

**Eliminating upper cabinets doesn’t have to mean cutting back on storage. Open shelving can be used to conveniently store those items that are used most, while also giving the room more visual depth. Use the shelves as a focal point in the space.

This entry was posted on Wednesday, February 4th, 2015 at 10:18 pm and is filed under Article Of The Week. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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