Living with flatmates can be fun, but it certainly is difficult. Piled up dishes, messy countertops, loud music at 4 am… and never enough storage space. Fridge, freezer, kitchen and bathroom cabinets seem to be ridiculously small for everybody, and fights over who’s used your peanut butter (again!) are a daily occurrence. But have you considered that yours might merely be a problem of organising your things? We have put together a series of tips that will help you successfully manage your storage if you are living in shared accommodation, and make your life a lot easier.
Share the basics…
That’s right – if you want your personal storage space to be nice and tidy, you might have to share the basics. Think about it – is having 6 milk cartons in the same fridge really convenient, or could you put that space to a better use? Consider sharing low-cost staples, such as flour, eggs, milk and spices as well as hand soap and washing liquid, and you’ll find that your house will be a lot neater, and a lot more spacious.
A fridge where everyone can just throw in their food is a key to disaster. Same goes for shelves, drawers, and cupboards. Organise all the available storage space so that everyone has a designated area to store their own things – if you have a small fridge, you can use pull out bins to make sure that everyone’s food is separate. Remember to make sure that each person has the same amount of space available if you want to avoid fights!
Labelling your items works especially well in communal spaces – such as the shower, which is always flooded with bottles of shampoo and conditioner and body washes. You can also label your designated shelves and drawers, not so much for you, but for the guests that will inevitably be at your house every other day.
At first glance, your house might not have that much storage space but learn to make the most of what you do have by using ‘hidden’ areas such as the basement, or the space under your bed. You can also use basket bins to minimise clutter in your own room or in shared areas so that you can enjoy them a lot more. Another great way to optimise your space is by using stackable boxes.
Nobody likes seeing a pile of mail on the table as soon as you walk in, or a coat thrown on the sofa. Consider creating a drop off station for things like keys, mail, coats and purses right at the entrance of your house. You will be able to find everything a lot quicker, and you’ll never forget to take your keys with you before going out.
This is perhaps the most important tip of all. If you want space to be organised while living in shared accommodation, you’ll have to declutter. Make it a rule that after something has been used, it needs to be put away, and make sure that you’re not holding onto things that you don’t actually need, and you’ll find yourself with a lot more space than you originally had.
If you still think that your shared accommodation doesn’t have enough storage space for all of your belongings, then self storage might be the right option for you.