How to do DIY

How to Maximise Your Living Space on a Budget

With the cost of housing on the rise, homeowners around the world are seeking out ways to make their living space feel bigger than it really is. From large windows and other optical tricks to smart furniture selection, it's surprisingly easy to make your living room feel larger than it really is using a few simple strategies

These four techniques, are excellent ways to make even a cramped inner-city apartment living room feel open, comfortable, and spacious.

Four techniques to maximise your living space

1. Use mirrors to your advantage
Mirrors are an incredible tool for 'expanding' a small living room. When you scan a room with your eyes, it's the light that makes it seem large and spacious. A smartly placed mirror can reflect light and make your room feel larger than it really is.

Try placing mirrors on walls that are perpendicular to a light source. This will stop glare from making your living room feel uncomfortable bright while still spreading lots of light around the room and increasing its perceived size.

Light paint and sensible furniture are keys to expanding a small living space.

2. Open up exterior walls with windows
Windows are the key to spacious living spaces, and adding large windows to a room is the best way to increase its perceived size. If your living room has small windows, think about replacing them with larger floor-to-ceiling models.

With bigger windows, your living room will be filled with light, allowing your eye to travel from one surface to another without being interrupted by shade. This makes even a tight, uncomfortable living room feel surprisingly spacious and roomy.

3. Paint the walls and ceiling in a light colour
Here's a cool optical trick – when your ceiling and walls are the same colour, your eyes struggle to see where one stops and the other begins. This makes your ceiling feel higher, your walls longer, and your living room significantly larger.

The greater the difference in colour between your ceiling and your walls – a black ceiling and white walls, for instance – the lower the ceiling will feel. Pick a colour that expands your room – white, cream, light blue, and even light pink or grey.

4. Choose furniture that's modestly sized
Furniture that's too large for your living room can make even the most expansive space feel cramped. Instead of choosing a three-seater, L-shaped sofa, opt for one that's closer to the 'too small' end of the scale than the 'too large' one.

This is especially true for dining room furniture. A large dining table can take up an incredible amount of space, making it an annoyance in tightly packed rooms. Try a smaller table – or even a kitchen breakfast counter – as a space-saving alternative.

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