These tips will help renters adjust to efficiency apartment spaces:
- Put up partitions, like screens or shelves, to define living areas. Strategically placed area rugs can help too. A partition can offer privacy in a bedroom or confine clutter to one specific concealed location.
- Create a traffic pattern around the space with paths that are wide enough to make it easy to access all living areas.
- Opt for multi-purpose furniture, like a couch that converts to a bed and a drop leaf table that can seat from two to six with minor adjustments.
- Prefer scaled down furnishings, like dressers and chairs that have a trim profile.
- Use creative storage solutions, like wall shelving, cabinet door racks and stacking boxes or nesting trays.
- Discard and recycle items often. A quarterly overhaul will help keep clutter under control.
- Anticipate your needs. Short of renting a storage unit, the space available in an efficiency apartment is all you're going to get. If you think there's a chance it won't be large enough for the full term of the rental, consider negotiating a shorter term agreement.
Visually, an efficiency apartment can look as sophisticated and appealing as a larger space, but the lack of storage and living area may make it a challenge to live in long term. With some planning and careful decorating, you can make the most of what's available, but this type of space is usually a short stop along a renter's path to a permanent home.