Storing and stashing

Private Property South Africa
Private Property Reporter

Living among clutter is nobody’s idea of a fun time, but what do you do if your house just doesn’t have enough storage space?

Here are some easy ways to create storage spaces and stash-away places for all those household items that are always in the way.

Make furniture work

Think about all the books and magazines you have lying on your coffee table. Wouldn’t it be great if all that clutter was out of eyeshot, but still within easy reach? Luckily any flat topped chest can make an excellent substitute for a side table or coffee table, and thus provide lots of extra room. Chuck CDs, DVDs and books in there for safe-keeping while you enjoy a tidy surface.

Ottomans often come with hidden storage space inside, and also create extra seating for guests. Alternatively, if you have a cabinet with some room underneath, creating a stashing spot is easy. Attach some wheels to wooden boxes so that you have neat, pull-out storage that is easy to remove and clean. Pinterest has some great ideas for these.

Optimise your cabinet space

Kitchen cabinets are often only filled at the bottom with lots of room above cups and glasses going to waste. Adding another tier is a great way to create more space. For a quick fix just line up all the glasses of the same height and place a tray on top so you can add another layer of crockery you use more often.

The space on top of kitchen cabinets also hardly gets used. Invest in decorative boxes or make your own from sturdy cardboard. Use these to keep small items stored away above kitchen cabinets without getting dusty or lost at the back.

Use walls wisely

Everything you can hang on a wall is out of your way. Hooks in your kitchen can be a great solution for storing pots, pans and utensils, leaving more space in cabinets for bigger appliances. Installing a pegboard makes wall storage even easier. Keep this space-saving tactic in mind for your laundry room and garden shed as well.

Most flat screen televisions are easy to hang on a wall and, with the right fittings, so are speakers. If hanging items directly on the wall is out of the question, you always have the option of shelves. Building a few open shelves is a fairly easy DIY project. All you need is pre-cut plywood, screws and a drill – just make sure your shelves are level.

Get rid of needless clutter

If you’ve created all the storage space you can but clutter is still getting you down, you might need a more drastic solution. Often we hoard clothes, book and other bulky items for sentimental reasons and never really benefit from having them around. Could someone else make better use of your old appliances or clothing?

As a rule, take your house through a good de-cluttering once every two years. Pick up every item and ask yourself, “Would I notice if someone had taken this away a week ago? What about a month ago?” If the answer is no, you probably won’t miss it as much as you think. Maybe it’s time to donate all the things that are cluttering up your home to a charity in order to enjoy a tidier living space.

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