Maximise space in your house share with these simple hacks (Photo: Mixed Retailers)
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If you live in a house share, then you’ll be well aware of how difficult it can be to fit everybody’s shit into one pad. From finding drawer space for everyone’s crockery and cutlery to fitting toiletries for multiple people in one tiny (and most likely windowless — but that’s a separate issue) bathroom, it’s hard to feel properly ‘at home’ when you’re constantly living among clutter.
But it is possible to make room for everybody’s bits and bobs — you just need to pick storage solutions that have been designed with flat sharers in mind. Here are some ideas that I wish I’d known about when I was living with housemates.
Maximise space in the crockery cupboard with this tiered rack
Having to manoeuvre a dining plate out from underneath a side plate, two pasta bowls, and two cereal bowls every time you need to dish up dinner is a real pain. So make your section of the cupboard far more accessible by getting a smart and space-saving tiered rack.
Stow bathroom essentials in your own designated drawer
For those bits and bobs you maybe might not want on show, having a set of drawers in the bathroom can be really helpful. This pretty yet compact unit consists of three gorgeous cane drawers — all spacious enough to store personal care products, and surplus toiletries.
Bung excess bedding and seasonal bits in a big garden storage box
Clearly, you’re not going to want to put anything valuable in an unlocked box in the garden — but for storing bulky things like suitcases and extra bedding, I reckon this is a great solution. It’s got a 454 litre capacity, can be made more secure with a padlock, and even doubles as a two-seater bench.
Store up to fifty pairs of shoes on this tall and slim hallway rack
To be honest, I thought it was impossible to find a rack that could accommodate the shoes of four or more people — until I saw this ten-tiered beauty. Super slim, it’s ideal for skinny Victorian-style hallways, and has ample room to house even your rarely-used pairs!
Use these racks to create more space for tins and cans in the cupboards
Lots of people living together but cooking separately probably means your cupboards are overflowing with ingredients. To maximise space for tins, jars, and bottles, pop these racks in each cupboard, and you’ll double your storage space.
Fit everybody’s towels on this multi-tier rail
Towel rails never have enough space for more than two towels, so this five-tier option is perfect if you’ve got quite a few of you sharing a bathroom. Plus, it simply hooks over the door, so is definitely a deposit-friendly solution for any renters.
Free up kitchen counter space by hanging your utensils instead
When you’ve got lots of people cooking in the kitchen at one time, having as much counter space as possible is really important. So swap the utensil pot for these self-adhesive hooks. Once attached to the wall, they can be fully rotated, and each have space for six different utensils.
Pick a coffee table that can double as a communal storage spot
Simple yet super useful, this coffee table also has plenty of space for storing books and belongings. I actually have this table, and have managed to fit three wicker baskets on the bottom shelf where I keep communal bits like board games, stationery, and wrapping paper.
Vacuum pack seasonal items and store them under your bed
Let’s face it — there’s probably not enough room in your wardrobe to store all your clothes. So vacuum packing the clothes that you won’t be wearing in the coming months is a great way to ensure your wardrobe stays easy to navigate and organise.
John Lewis & Partners
Divvy up the freezer drawers with this divided storage bin
Typically a free-for-all when it comes to organisation, house share freezers are pure chaos. So, to ensure you never again lose your frozen peas underneath your housemates frozen pizza, get divided bins like this that will help you divvy up the space between you all.
Use a tiered organiser to keep the bathroom countertop clear
After quickly realising when I moved in with my boyfriend that neither of us were realistically ever going to put our toiletries away in the cupboard on an ongoing basis, I bought this organiser. Tucked away in the corner of our countertop, it’s just what we needed to ensure our products were easy to reach, but not causing chaos!
Get a coat tree stand that’ll subtly slot into any corner
Classic coat rack benches are great, but they do force you to sacrifice a reasonable amount of floorspace. If your hallway is pretty slim, then a tree stand like this might be a better option, as it’s easier to push out the way into the corner of the corridor — or even the living room.
Make space for the endless mugs with these under shelf racks
Consisting largely of office secret santa gifts and ones I’ve stolen from work, my mug collection is really quite large. If you’re also living with a mug hoarder, then free up space by swapping the precarious shelf stacking for hanging them from these self-adhesive hooks.
Accessorise your living room with this affordable and foldable ottoman
If you’re renting a pad with pals, then it probably seems silly to splash out on a fabulous storage ottoman that you’ll then have to fight for custody over once your lease has ended. An ideal solution, this foldable one makes a great extra seat for the lounge, and is perfect for housing extra blankets, towels, and bedding.
Use collapsible crates to create storage on top of kitchen cupboards
There’s always space on top of kitchen cupboards — so make sure you’re making the most of it. These lightweight crates have a 60 litre capacity, can be collapsed when not in use, and will look really sleek and uniform when lined up in a row on top of your unit.
This article originally appeared on HuffPost UK and has been updated.