We just moved to a new place a month ago but for the past two years John and I were sharing a tiny first-floor apartment. If we lived in the city this would be the norm; but in the suburbs, most people are incredulous when you claim that a married couple can amicably share a small one bedroom apartment.
And they are partially right; it can be unbearable sometimes—but for the most part it was actually quite comfortable.
- Don’t go into it thinking you can cram a small house or two apartments’ worth of belongings into one space—it won’t work and it will never completely leave the apartment no matter how hard you try=misery.
- To prevent this, measure the main rooms and donate/sell/store (if you must) any furniture that just won’t fit BEFORE you move.
- If you’re used to the McMansion-type lifestyle you may need to rethink the scale of furniture you bring into the space (think more IKEA-sized and less La-Z-Boy)
- Another tip is to get furniture that “perches” on legs and isn’t right on the floor (couches with dust ruffles are out)—this will give the illusion of more space.
- Make sure everything has a “home”; with so little space things will need to be stored. Communicate where things go to your partner and vice versa—agree to house the item once finished using it.
Tidiness is next to happiness?
- With so little space, having an unmade bed or toiletries all over the bathroom counter can quickly make the place look messier than it is.
- Since the bedroom is a good 1/3 of your living space, make an effort to straighten your bed every morning (doesn’t have to be perfect).
- Try to keep odds and ends off of surfaces; places like Target, Bed Bath & Beyond, and The Container Store all have great storage options such as drawers and bins that you can store in bathroom cabinets and closets (kind of pricey but worth it) and you can take these with you as you move from place to place.
The space we carved out in the old apartment for separate living space—-armchair is STRANDMON from IKEA
Try to create two separate living spaces
- If there’s room, try putting an armchair & ottoman in the bedroom; it provides another place for one of you to chill without being on top of one-another (especially helpful for long winter weekends when cabin fever might be setting in)