The goal of planning storage space in the house is that nothing is left out or forgotten. In order to achieve this, it is enough to follow the simple planning diagram that we present to you.
In the first place, we need to consider the real needs that are different for each family and then, on that basis, to calculate the total required storage space in and out of the house. In the next step, it is necessary to design the external storage space and the internal one that needs to be built. In the end, it is necessary to make a layout of furniture that will be used for storing things in the rooms, but also to consider what other furniture can, for auxiliary purposes, be used for storage.
Is storage important in a house?
Yes! Cleverly designed storage space makes a small house functional and vice versa.
Storage space in the house should be planned at the earliest stage of the design of the house itself. The goal is that all the things used by the householders, their guests, pets, as well as common things in the household have a layout.
This is the basic condition for the house to be tidy, and tidiness is the basis of cleanliness, and cleanliness is the basis of health!
Below, we give you a kind of signpost that should allow you not to skip anything when planning storage.
A Step by Step Guide for planning and organizing storage space in the house
1. How much storage should you have in your house?
As a general rule, on many websites and forums we can find the so-called 10 percent rule. This means that the storage space of the average family is equal to 10 percent of the total house area. Stil, to design a storage space based on this rule would be completely wrong. In support of this is the fact that one of every 10 households in the U.S. rents a storage unit.
The amount of storage space should be carefully calculated for each family, when designing a house and interior, based on the number of members, their age, occupation, hobbies, occasional activities, and common needs of the whole household which is not the same in the city, suburbs or the village.
1.1 How much storage space each family member needs individually?
In the first place you should start from an honest analysis of your own life needs and habits. Superficial access would be reduced to clothing and footwear. However, we need to think about what sports we do (bicycles, balls, golf bags, tennis rackets, skis, skates …), whether we exercise at home (fitness equipment), whether we work from home (computer, printer, scanner, documentation, office equipment…), whether we have a hobby (pottery, carpentry, fishing, hunting…), whether we travel (suitcases, bags, portable fridge…), whether we play an instrument (in addition to the instrument itself, space is needed for tablatures, spare wires, transport boxes, amplifiers, microphones, cables…), whether we collect some items (travel souvenirs, photo albums…). It is best to put everything on paper and write the approximate size of the required space next to each item.
Then, this process should be repeated for other family members. Here we need to take care that children grow and thus change their needs, so flexible organization of storage space is needed. Also, don’t forget future family members as well as your pets because they also need their own space.
When you calculate the space your wife needs, multiply it by two! 🙂
1.2 How much shared storage space is needed in the house?
In addition to the space needed by each family member individually, there is a need for storage space for those things that allow the normal functioning of the household, regardless of family size, living needs and habits and so on.
When we talk about the things that each and every family needs, we are talking about a lawn mower, yard tools, car parking, household chemicals, food, dishes, firewood, holiday decorations, books, medicines, towels, laundry, garbage disposal…
Some families, again, have specific needs depending on their lifestyle. For example: someone has a boat, someone has a lot of relatives coming for the holidays, someone has a person with a disability in the family… Think about the specific needs of your own family!
Shared storage space also depends on where we live. In a rural area it is necessary to have more space than in the suburbs because it is necessary to place things that serve to cultivate the land and raise more animals. In the suburbs, again, more space is needed than in the urban area because the yards are bigger, the cars are bigger and there are usually more than one, and so on. Think about the place where you build a house when planning a storage space because it dictates your lifestyle!
2. What are the storage options outside the house?
As a general rule, everything that can be stored outside should be stored outside. The external storage spaces are all those spaces outside the interior of the house that serve to store things for their primary or secondary purpose. External storage options to consider when designing each house are as follows:
a very handy option, can be placed almost anywhere, comes in a variety of styles and dimensions, cheap, can store firewood, bicycles, tools, garden supplies and so on
in addition to the basic purpose (to accommodate a car) can be used for a variety of purposes, especially if it has an attic
can be used to increase living space but, especially if there are no windows, can be organized as a comfortable and practical storage space
similar to the basement, when it is not used for housing it should be used for storage, although due to less convenient access it is not practical for everyday needs but for some things that are rarely used
- greenhouse (glasshouse)
a miniature greenhouse is known as a cold frame, the interior of a greenhouse exposed to sunlight becomes significantly warmer than the external temperature, protecting its contents in cold weather and therefore is ideal for storage plants in wintertime
- garbage disposal place
although we often do not think about it, garbage disposal is an important daily routine that should be organized wisely, the place should be large enough, protected from access to animals and preferably a little aesthetically pleasing
- composting place
if you have little space in the yard, only a few square meters, this is highly recommended because it is not only environmentally friendly but also saves space occupied by green waste
- dog house (bird house, chicken coop…)
always think of pets, and if you want to learn how to customize a house for pets, click here to read our article on the topic.
in addition to the obviously useful functions, they can also be a great decoration in front of the yard and a sign of welcome
3. Which storage spaces should be built in?
When you have placed all the things that can be placed outside, it is time to dedicate yourself to the organization of the interior. The most effective storage spaces in the interior are those that are built-in. They provide the most disposal options, increase the value of the house and fit into all furnishing styles. There are several types of built-in storage spaces:
- storage room
Whenever you can afford it, you should build a separate room just for storage. It is not only suitable to be a kind of warehouse with smart storage solutions, but it has the advantage that it can best hide the mess and it, let’s be honest, always appears no matter how hard we try otherwise.
What is a storage room for a house, that is a pantry for a kitchen. practically everything that does not require storage in a cool place can be stored in a pantry. if you do not have space for a full size pantry you should consider an English pantry which is also useful but more compact.
- mudroom or laundry room
Mudrooms and laundry rooms are beautiful and functional, meaning organization and more storage. Not only do they add value, they also help to protect your valuable things in the house.
- walk-in closet
The influence of popular culture (movies like Devil Wears Prada or series like Sex and the City) is so strong that it has changed the attitude towards glamor in the whole modern society. And nothing contributes to the feeling of belonging to the world of glamor like favorite shoes or dresses exhibited in a special place in the walk-in closet. Even if we ignore this, walk-in closets are extremely practical and they increase the value of the house, they can even be a reason that will decisively affect the purchase.
- niches in the wall
Almost everywhere, but especially in the bathroom and kitchen there is a need to store a large number of small bottles, boxes, etc. Each type of open shelves or small cabinets takes up valuable space but also visually burdens the space. So when designing a house, be sure to incorporate a few niches because they are very useful and visually appealing.
- knee-wall dresser
When adapting or building an attic, it is calculated that the minimum useful height below the slope of the ceiling is 47 inch (120 cm). The space below that height is closed by plasterboard. However, it is possible to accommodate a number of necessities in this space. There are many interesting ideas but the knee-wall dresser is our favorite.
- space under the stairs
This space is usually lost and useless, but there is great potential in it – use it!
- space around the fireplace
To give the space the warmth and comfort, the fireplace is an unsurpassed ally. In the space around it, whether it is built of brick or stone or a frame is placed and plasterboard is mounted on it, it is possible to fit in niches with many items.
4. How to plan the storage of things in each room?
It is generally known how furniture is arranged in rooms. To get maximum storage space, here are a few suggestions:
- kitchen elements should be up to the ceiling
- take advantage of corners and narrow spaces between kitchen elements
- decorate in the Scandinavian style – with appliances and useful accessories
- pay attention to the efficient organization of garbage disposal
- place a coat closet in the hallway, and if there is no place then coat hanger
- a smaller shoe cabinet is needed for guests
- you need at least one big laundry basket
- make use of the space under the sink
- the mirror can be mounted on the cabinet door
- don’t forget a medicine cabinet
- plan a place to dispose of towels
- at least one closet required
- the drawer is irreplaceable
- bedside tables
- Jewelry Boxes & Organizers
Living room and dining room
- everyone needs bookcase
- cupboard is extremely useful
- coffee table
- basket for newspapers and magazines
5. How to find additional (invisible) storage space in the room?
Sometimes there seems to be no more room for anything, but it’s actually there we just don’t see it. The point is to give furniture that serves a particular purpose a secondary role in storage. Here are some ideas, just to get you thinking…
Wall-Hung TV Cabinet
Finally, to conclude: a cleverly planned and organized storage space increases the functionality of the whole house, its aesthetics and, finally, its market value. It is worth devoting yourself to this at the earliest stage of designing a house and seeking the help of an architect!