It seems that just about every home has at least one room that’s simply too small. Older homes tend to be more commodious, offering higher ceilings and ample floor space. Newer construction, though, often reflects the harsh facts of the housing market. If you’re building a four-bedroom home at today’s steep building costs, the rooms are probably going to be smaller. All of which presents home sellers with the problem of making those dinky rooms look larger. Sydney home staging experts face these issues every day and have developed a list of tips to give your rooms the look of large. We share a few of them here.
Paint (Of Course)
Selecting the right paint colours for a small space sets the tone (pun intended) for an expansive first impression. Select a neutral colour that fits into the home’s colour palette, and then go a shade lighter for your diminutive space. Grays and sandy colours are lovely, and particularly in vogue now since they fit so comfortably into the popular Hamptons style. Use a lighter, brighter colour for the accents and trim, which will make the walls appear to recede. This gives the room instant optical square footage.
Allowing light into the room from any window will help make your small space seem larger. Where possible, eliminate window treatments that block the natural light and, where privacy is an issue, try using a window treatment that disappears from view when not in use like pull-down blinds or shades. There are also clever window treatments that provide complete privacy but still allow the light to flood in in the form of self-adhesive window films. These not-too-terribly-difficult-to-apply treatments come in many interesting textures from what looks like frosted glass to spectacular stained glass.
In the room with no window to call its own, rely on lighting fixtures to do the work. Just as important as the fixture is the type of bulb you use. Full spectrum light bulbs brighten the space much like natural light, and as a bonus, give the room’s occupants the same sense of well-being that comes with natural light. (Sydney home staging experts tell us that this little lighting trick is also an excellent way to improve the emotional status of all living things from pets and plants to their people in the dim light of winter months.)
Don’t overwhelm your small spaces with too much furniture. The more you try to stuff into a diminutive space, the littler it will appear. Instead, use only that which his necessary and, if possible, scale those pieces down to match the space. Use a single bed instead of a double one. Opt for other furnishings that do two-for-one duty; a dresser/bookcase, under-bed storage, or nested stools for seating. Keep an eye out for sofas with open arms and visible legs and avoid overstuffed anything.
Be sure to keep the furniture from blocking the traffic lines and, when possible, dress that bed (or futon) with fabric that matches the walls. This will make the room appear instantly larger.
Mirrors for Magic
If there is a magical way to make a room appear larger, it is the placement of mirrors. And the good news is that mirrors are not all expensive or even framed. There are mirrored tiles that can be arranged behind the shelves of a bookcase or really large mirrors (best delivered and installed by professionals) that can be used to re-face a closet door, flank a fireplace, or cover an entire wall. Two words of caution about mirrors: when you are installing them, keep in mind that they are not awfully flexible. (This blogger once shattered a very large expanse of mirror by attempting to bend it around an imperfection on the wall.) Finally, make sure they are spotlessly clean and streak-free lest your grand illusion be spoiled.
If you find yourself looking for other ways to enlarge a small room, consult with a Sydney home staging professional. These experts know all the many ways to transform small spaces into ones that appear far more ample, turning an iffy room into another asset.