It’s safe to say that over the last few years, people have spent more time at home. With the boom in work-from-home jobs, functional spaces have become an essential part of the new normal. Keep reading to learn a few ways you can make your existing space more functional without any major renovations.
Redefine Your Rooms
Believe it or not, there’s no law that says you have to use a room in the way it was originally designed. Don’t actually use your formal dining room except during Easter and Christmas dinners? That’s a huge amount of square footage going unused the other 363 days a year—days when you could really use a home office (or playroom, or piano room, or homeschool room).
It’s up to you to redefine the rooms in your home based on how you and your family live day to day. For many people, a practical solution is to come up with a fluid space that transitions on an as-needed basis. For example: a dining room that serves as a workspace during the weekdays; a guest room that doubles as an office thanks to a create Murphy bed setup; dividing your living room up so that half is the dining area and half is the sitting area. There’s no need (and no space) to have a room exist simply because that’s how the builder envisioned it. It’s OK—and encouraged!—to think outside the box and create a customized plan tailor-made to your needs.
Create Organizational Systems
Not only does a well organized space make a room feel bigger and more spacious, but it can increase your focus and decrease stress. There's a direct link between physical clutter and mental clutter—yes, "stuff" can be stressful! Making sure every item has a proper place is a practical step toward a calmer life and more functional home.
Before you dash off to the nearest store to buy all the clear bins in sight, really think through how you use your space. For example, place a bowl or hanging rack where you actually drop your wallet and keys every day—not in a random spot where you think it will look prettier. The key to a successfully organized home is to make your systems work for your lifestyle, and not the other way around.
Use Pocket Doors to Divide Spaces
One effective way to “build” more rooms in your home is to incorporate pocket doors. Traditionally, pocket doors were used to create more intimate settings (like in a parlor room). With modern open floor plans, pocket doors are gaining popularity again as a way to have the best of both worlds.
It’s not a perfect solution for every room, but it is possible to use a pocket door in many standard areas of the home. Some common placements include: at the end of the hallway leading to the bedrooms (keep entertaining without waking the sleeping baby!); between the primary bedroom and the primary bathroom suite; in between the kitchen and the dining area (ideal for creating an instant Zoom meeting room); and in tight spaces where a traditional door won’t swing open, like a downstairs bathroom.
If you think a pocket door would make your space more functional, be sure to check out our Custom Fit Pocket Door Kit. With six different width options available, it's easy to find the perfect fit. We make the frame in-house using pine with galvanized steel for added strength.
The key component in all of the abovementioned tips is to stay true to your specific needs—and those needs will look different from any neighbor or Instagram influencer. Functionality is all about making efficient use of what you have so that it best serves you. That way, you can focus on what’s most important!