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Living in London: How To Maximise Your Living Space

By Matt Cook

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Summary: Expats living in London sometimes struggle to find room for their belongings. Matt Cook offers advice on how to make the most of your space and love your life in London.

Living in London - How Expats Can Maximise Living Space

Many expats choose to live in London due to the amount of jobs that are available; however the population is so dense that although there are sufficient jobs, there is very little space to be had. Due to this many individuals find themselves living in apartment blocks, flats and other small properties, but they struggle with the lack of space. For those struggling to find room for their belongings, here’s a guide to living in London without sacrificing your space.

The Living Room

The first place in which you should seek to save space is the living room due to the fact that this room will see a lot of use throughout your time in London. Many people make the mistake of buying too much furniture or furniture that is too big for their home. If visitors are rare within your household do not purchase a large sofa, as a smaller sofa or even an armchair would suffice if you live alone and do not receive guests frequently.

Strategic Furniture

You should also think about purchasing furniture that gives the illusion of more space such as sofas with lower legs and glass furniture such as glass tables and stands. To save space within the majority of your home you must think tall; consider tall furniture that almost reaches your ceiling such as cabinets, book cases and shelving units as this will leave the rest of your home clutter free.

Using Wall Space

Utilise the walls as much as you can, for instance rather than purchasing a TV stand you can fit your TV to the wall through the use of wall brackets and fit a few shelves to hold your DVDs, consoles and games.

To make the most of your small living space we recommend that you make the most of the light within your rooms either through purchasing lamps that give out a lot of white light or by positioning mirrors throughout the room. Utilising mirrors within your home is also another way to give the appearance of a much larger living space.

The Kitchen

There are many ways in which you can save space within a kitchen of a limited size. Utilising the wall space is essential if you wish to efficiently store your utensils and various other types of kitchen equipment. It’s possible for you to utilise the wall space through building shelves, hanging racks, cabinets and cupboards to store both your food and common kitchen accessories.

Kitchen Surface Space

Keeping your kitchen surfaces as clear of food debris and other items as possible is another method of making the most of your space whilst living in London. Each surface within your kitchen should be multifunctional so that it has more than one purpose; for instance your food preparation surface could also be used as your study as it is a flat surface that you can use when you need to study or complete work.

Rather than wasting the space in your kitchen cupboards we recommend that you store your items in small to medium boxes as these boxes can be stocked on top of each other which will save a lot of space in your cupboards. The average person would simply fill the floor of their cupboard as best they can and move on to the next one; however utilising clear plastic boxes or trays is more efficient.

The Bedroom

As mentioned previously cleverly positioning mirrors or lamps throughout your room can make the space feel much brighter and larger than it is. However, there are many other ways in which you can save space within your bedroom and make the most of your living area in London.

Using your Bed

One of the first things that you should do is purchase a bed with plenty of space beneath it so that you can store boxes of clothes, documents, books and many other objects beneath the bed where they are out of sight and thus out of the way. If you do not have a bed with a lot of space beneath it you can purchase a bed with built in drawers or look to increase the height of your bed to create an alternative storage space.

If you do not have many belongings to store we recommend that you purchase a multipurpose bed; this could be an item such as a sofa bed that you can relax on throughout the day and pull out to create a bed on the evening. A sofa bed not only saves a lot of space but also looks stylish and inviting; this is perfect for a modern room.

Fitted Furniture

Fitted furniture can be expensive; but for a small bedroom this may be a good idea. Fitted wardrobes take up far less room and can be customised in order to store more than just clothes. By fitting a wardrobe into an alcove or against one wall you can also save space by utilising the top of the wardrobe as a storage space for all those important items that you would like safely out of reach of others.

Angling your furniture can create a lot more space in your room as you can then also store objects behind this furniture and out of sight. If you angle your furniture correctly you can create a larger central space within your room and use this space as a focus so that the rest of your bedroom seems much larger.

There are many other ways in which you can make the most of your home; part of the fun of living in London is identifying all of the ways in which you can develop your home in order to make it more suitable and easier to live in. Also, all homes are slightly different it is up to you to find these small differences that will make a great change in how your home is viewed and how you use the space that you have.

About the Author

Matt Cook is an enthusiastic individual that loves making home improvements; when Matt isn’t decorating his home he can be found behind his desk at ABC Selfstore developing new storage methods.

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First Published: Apr 24, 2014

River Thames, London
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