Whether you’re just moving in or have been struggling with issues for a while, every apartment has at least one flaw you can’t get past.
Here are our solutions for the five most common apartment problems you may encounter (or already have).
Problem 1: Lack of storage
You live in an amazing one-bedroom in a big city, and its only critical flaw is its lack of any closets. Your makeshift solution has been to hang some of your clothes in a very narrow space, between two doors. But you have more clothes than space available. What to do?
The easiest way is to tear down a wall and replace it with a great room divider/closet with slider doors on both sides. Of course, you need to own your apartment for it to work. Renters will need to use different solutions, like beds incorporating some sort of storage system under the mattress. You could also get custom-made furniture that neatly fits into every corner of a room. In other words, you need to focus on multifunctional furniture.
Problem 2: No light
It’s not easy living in the dark, especially on a sunny afternoon. If you live in a small studio-apartment, or on the ground floor of a building, how do you improve the brightness of the place?
The trick is to play with direct and indirect lighting. In other words, you give the illusion that the room is better lit than it is. For example, you can create your own dropped ceiling with embedded full-spectrum light-bulbs. You’ll replace light that falls to the ground and compresses, rather choosing lighting that comes from the bottom.
Avoid having curtains with dark colors (or printed shapes), replacing them with whiter shades. Combining too many colors is a dangerous game.
Finally, place a mirror opposite a window, and not only will you improve brightness, you’ll also create an illusion of depth.
Problem 3: Tenants can’t customize
When you rent out a place, you usually only have the right to hang pictures. It’s a little trickier to repaint the living room in bright orange, or drill huge holes in the walls to install a hammock. How to customize a rented apartment, when you don’t want to create holes and permanent stains?
If you’re avoiding any remnants on your walls (especially if it’s a new apartment), priority should be given to large objects that occupy space. You could select a few tall vases or lamps, to hide the empty walls behind them. If you enjoy large mirrors (that often leave marks on paint), you can try to place them on the floor.
And if you really don’t like white walls, you can try out remove “peel & stick” wallpaper (like TemPaint).
Problem 4: Atypical room shape
The problem with weird rooms like hallways and corridors, is the lack of leeway when it comes to furnishing. Between all the doors and the lack of space, finding interesting and cool stuff can be a challenge. What to pick?
If you have an elongated entryway with lots of doors, it is important not to overlook it. An entryway is the first room you enter, and can be a reflection of your place. If you have to choose, try to select the most beautiful objects, even if they don’t seem large or wide enough. Quality is a priority. For example, you can get a very nice mirror, or a small bedside table that will fit in between doors, accompanied by a nice lamp. Another idea could be the use of bi-colored walls. You could paint the doors and baseboard in one color, and the walls in another. It immediately gives the place another dimension.
Problem 5: Separating rooms
You would like to create two distinct spaces out of a single bedroom, or split your living room in half. Where to start?
Regardless of the specific problem, the same solution can be applied to all; namely, a room divider. It is best not to pick one too high as to avoid stifling the room.
Bedrooms that need to be divided (for children) can have dividers more width-wise, as not to accentuate a “hallway effect.”
For studio-apartments that need to be divided between a living room area and a bedroom, you can buy a small piece of furniture (about 40 inches high) long enough to place around the bed to create a bedroom corner. You can then add books and other decorative objects.
If you’re trying to create an entryway, you can put a small partition (also about 40 inches high), or simply put a decorative panel to hide the space.
Hopefully, you successfully overcame your apartment issues.
What are some other tricks that helped up solve “homey” problems?