Paula Glazebrook | Holliston MA Real Estate Real Estate, Ashland MA Real Estate Real Estate


Oh, the basement. How is it that all of the unused items seem to end up here? If your basement is like most it is filled with items long since unused but you still can’t quite let go of the boxes stacked on boxes. If going down into your basement to find what you are looking for is a chore keep reading to learn how to create a more organized storage space that makes finding things a snap. Start by doing a major clean out of everything in your basement. Sell or donate anything you no longer have a use for but have put off getting rid of. By doing so you will give your stuff a second life and clear up extra room for a more effective storage system. Organize what you do decide to keep in “like” piles to make putting them in their future assigned places a cinch. Have labels prepared for each of these piles and come up with category names for each one. Next, you will want to invest in shelving units and plastic bins if you don’t already have some to protect items you will be storing from any potential flooding. Consider shelves made of metal as wood shelves are prone to absorbing moisture and warping. You may also want to add a dehumidifier to control the levels of moisture in the air, which can lead to damage to the items you are storing. If possible plan for storage around the utility area while keeping all paths to switches and appliances free of clutter. If your basement is unfinished and you have a plan to remodel in the future this will keep costs lower as you only need to section off one area instead of two. When you start placing your bins on the shelves keep the priority levels of their contents in mind. High use items should be more easily accessible than the lower priority ones. Ensure that when labeling boxes they are in a spot that is visible from just a quick glance. You could also add a list of the contents of each box on the label for when a category requires more than one box. Extra steps for the dedicated: Maximize available space in your basement by utilizing the space under the stairs. Adding shelves here will give you extra storage space that is easy to access. Label switches, breakers, and shut off valves and hang up a flashlight in an easily accessible space for power outage preparedness. You may also want to buy plastic bins in various colors to color code your items categories and make finding them easy with just a glance. You might think re-organizing your basement is the last thing you want to spend your weekend doing. However, with a proper plan and the right supplies you can create an organization system in your basement that makes finding stored items a snap and an enjoyable process!

There are so many places in your home that you could capitalize on for storage space. The problem is that you just haven’t thought of them yet. You’ll find some great ideas for storage spaces in your home for inspiration below. 


Under Your Stairs


You might not use the space that you have under the stairs because you feel that it’s too cramped, but you’re missing out on major places to store your stuff. You can install closet doors to keep the space concealed from any visitors, but there’s a lot you can do with under stairs spaces including using it as a pantry or a broom closet.


Go Upward


If you’re short on space you can always move upward in your home. You can put up shelves in high places in rooms to store bulk items and rarely used items in the space. Making use of the space you have high on the walls can really help you to have storage without guests even noticing. These elevated shelves have the ability to blend right into the decor. 


Your Kitchen Island


The kitchen island may be a great place to prepare your food, but it’s also a great place to store things. Many islands have extra space under the counters. Whether or not these cabinets are enclosed, you can use this area to store pots and pans or kitchen essentials like spices or frequently used canned goods.


Behind Doors


Any door can become a storage haven with a bit of creativity. Many stores sell behind-the-door organizers. You can also create your own storage with a bit of creativity. Think of items that can be compressed in a space like that behind a door like shoes, wrapping paper, or cosmetics.    


Use Bookshelves


Bookshelves aren’t just for books. Do you have an empty wall that could be put to good use? Place a bookshelf there for additional storage. You can use a bookcase for anything from pots and pans to towels and bath supplies. Get creative because a bookshelf can be an easier shelving than trying to install shelving independently.   


Use Your Furniture


Many pieces of furniture come with built in storage compartments and open spaces. Make use of these areas or make your own storage. You can make your own storage by using boxes as drawers for storage. Look under your bed and use that space for storing clothes and other items that can sit in thinner boxes under the bed space.


The most important thing that you can do with your storage is to get creative and make it work for you!


Humans have been thinking about the way they decorate their homes for thousands of years. In ancient India, Vastu shastra (literally, "the science of architecture") has been informing decorating techniques since as early as 6,000 BCE. The more commonly known influence for home decorating, feng shui, has its roots in ancient China where practitioners were inspired by astronomy. In the early 1900s, however, a modern science was founded that attempts to solve some of the problems that arise based on our environments. Environmental psychology is a field that focuses on the interplay between humans and the environments they live and work in. Scientists have studied the way humans (and other animals, like rats) are affected by their environment. Their findings help to inform us of how we can live more relaxed or focused based on how we decorate our home and workplace.

A place to call your own

As society becomes increasingly urbanized, many psychologists are studying the problems that arise from being in constant contact with one another, both physically and in the digital world. One thing that scientists have discovered is that it is important for humans to have a place of sanctuary during their day. Whether this is your cubicle at work, your home office, or your tool shed, everyone needs a place they can be alone. Ask yourself if your home setup provides you with a space that you can go to be alone.

How colors can affect mood

Have you ever been in a school or hospital that was painted an awful color that just made you uncomfortable? Many of us have trained ourselves to adapt and live with environments that aren't ideal for us. For example, the bright red walls of McDonald's or the blinding fluorescent lights in a department store probably aren't conditions we'd pick for our homes. Scientists have discovered that there is a correlation between colors, brightness, and our mood. Try to match the colors of your rooms with their functions. For example, you wouldn't want to paint your bedroom bright red, as your bedroom should be a place you can relax to fall asleep. Instead, go with a less-pronounced color for the bedroom.

The balance between cluttered and sterile

Much of the way we choose to decorate our homes is informed by our childhood. If you learn meticulous cleaning habits from your parents, you might carry on with this into adulthood. As a child, you probably went to a friend's house and marveled at how differently they did things. Part of that lesson is learning that the way someone chooses to decorate and clean their home is part of their personality. But like most things in life, it's important to find a balance. If you find yourself restless or distracted you should ask yourself if the room is too cluttered or messy. Maybe it's the opposite; you could just as easily become distracted or uncomfortable by an environment that is too sterile looking.

Listen to yourself

The most important thing to remember when decorating your home is to follow your intuitions. Decide if you decorated a room a certain way because that's what everyone else does or if it actually makes you feel more at home.

Have you found your almost dream house, but there’s just one small catch holding you back? If lack of storage space is preventing you from placing your bid don’t write that house off just yet. If you’re willing to put in some work to your new house I’ve got some creative solutions that can help you look at your space in a new way. Here are a five “faux” built-in idea to add to your home to leverage precious space out of those “awkward” corners and empty walls.

1. Build a bookcase along the wall of a staircase. If you have an empty wall created by a staircase you can create a one of kind bookcase to store books, movies, and knick-knacks. This is a perfect solution for those walls that are too small to place furniture in front of but too large to go unused.

2. Utilize any alcoves. If your home comes with any alcoves, consider yourself lucky! These can make for a great spot to tuck in a built-in desk and provides plenty of room for overhead shelving to store books as well as office and school supplies. If an office nook isn’t your cup of tea you could also easily turn this space into a crafting corner for scrapbooking or sewing. 

3. Turn a dead end hallway into a useful and inviting space. A dead end hallway that leads to a window may add lots of light to a home but it can also be an awkward place for furniture. Depending on the size of the space you could add a linen storage that doubles as a small window seat. 

4. Create a welcoming mudroom that acts as a catch-all for your family's shoes and outerwear. Add a wall-length bench with room to store shoes underneath and hooks for jackets and bags overhead. You can add a shelf over the hooks for even more storage (think sports equipment and outdoor toys). Get creative with molding and shiplap for a one of a kind addition to your home that looks original to the house. 

5. If a room lacks a closet, add your own. This solution is only limited by your imagination. You can either pick up a kit or go completely DIY.  Many stores, such as Ikea, offer floor to ceiling closet kits, these are usually sleek and modern with sliding doors. Alternatively, you can come up with your own custom design that stretches a wall, fills a corner or juts out and creates an alcove for you to fit a bed or desk into. This is another project that with the addition of millwork will look seamless and original to the home. 

When a couple finds their dream home it doesn’t always guarantee it’s a 100 percent perfect fit for their lifestyle. More often than not they usually find themselves with a list of changes they would like to make that will turn their new house into a well-loved home. If your new home doesn’t have a lot of storage options don’t forget that you can easily add your own with a little creativity and elbow grease!




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