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These are the best organizing hacks we’ve learned in the past 20 years

As apartment living is becoming more popular in the U.S., the size of new apartments has decreased steadily since 2010, says RentCafe. New high-end living spaces are easy to take care of, have modern kitchens and bathrooms, and often have convenient amenities such as pools and gyms.

On the other hand, these small spaces can be tough to organize and keep tidy — floor space is at a premium, and any space at all can feel cramped if you have a housemate. Cluttered environments are not pleasant for your mental health. Wasting time looking for things is frustrating, and after working all day, the last thing you want to do is navigate an obstacle course to get to your sofa and relax.

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There are two ways to get that floor space back: Chuck everything or organize it. The occasional purge works well to keep you mindful of accumulating junk. Organizing your things so that you can find them easily will de-stress you and allow you to enjoy your home. Here are a few ideas to help keep your house orderly and efficient, organized by each goal to help you where you may need it most.

Clothing organization

Getting your clothes put away in a manner that you can see what you have is perhaps the most common area where people need help. Not only are there clothes to be hung up, but belts, shoes, accessories, scarves, and ties all need to be readily accessible. Here are a few ideas that go a long way to making your morning happier.

Towel racks and shower-curtain hooks

For a small amount of money, you can purchase a bathroom towel rack and a set of shower-curtain hooks and make an attractive hanging storage area for belts and scarves. When mounted inside the closet or on the back of a door, towel racks keep everything visible and protected. For neckties, skip the hooks and hang the ties over the bar to keep them from crimping and wrinkling.

Laundry

Laundry baskets are convenient, but what’s even more convenient is having all of it up off the floor. You can swap out the baskets for a couple of bags and hang them out of sight on the back of your bedroom door. In fact, over-the-door hook organizers can help you keep all kinds of things out of your way and open up your floor space.

Shoes

Shoes can be a huge pain to keep together and keep in good shape. One way to organize your shoes is to store them in clean containers and stack those containers in the closet. That way, you can see what you have, they stay together and are dust-free. Additional solutions for shoes are over-the-door hanging shoe organizers and rolling shoe towers that hold up to 50 pairs of shoes. The rolling racks can be stored out of the way or in your closet, since they have a narrow profile.

Non-hanging clothes

Nothing is stopping you from hanging everything you have in your closet, and if you have enough room, that’s great. If you don’t, consider buying a bed that has drawers under the frame. Alternatively, those clear storage boxes work for more than shoes, and they also keep your clothes dust and moth-free.

Kitchen and bath organization

Often, modern developers don’t design new apartments with linen closets, so you are on your own to figure out where to store your towels and other bath necessities. Kitchens can come with a woeful amount of storage space, as well. Here are some tips to maximize the space that you have in these rooms.

Towels

People have begun to roll up bath towels as a way for them to take up less room. They also look stylish and geometric when the rolled towels are stacked; SFGate gives some tips on how to do it right. You can take this look even further by storing them behind a door in a large-pocket shoe organizer. These organizers can fit a pair of shoes in each pocket and are available in several colors. While you’re at it, you can use it to store other bathroom essentials such as bath tissue and toiletries.

Toiletries

You can keep your shower organized with caddies and suction-cup hooks, but if you have a shower/bath combination, you can avoid those and use this ingenious shower-curtain liner inside your fabric curtain and keep your toiletries organized and out of sight.

Maximize kitchen cabinets

You can treat the inside of your kitchen cabinets like the back of your doors by hanging measuring cups, utensils, and spices inside them. Additionally, there is usually a lot of wasted vertical space in there, so investing in sturdy interior-cabinet shelving doubles your space and keeps your dishes safe.

Prioritize your counter space

There is nothing that says that you need to keep all of your small appliances on the kitchen counter. Toasters, food processors, blenders, and stand mixers can all live in a cabinet while they wait until you beckon for them again. Save your counter space for the items that you use daily. So, store that Instant Pot under the counter until your next use.

Expand your storage

Rolling storage carts help you store items and food that you use often and can be stored wherever it’s convenient for you. Some even double as an island and look chic while adding new surfaces for cooking, microwaves, and cheerful decorations.

We as consumers have more choices to enhance our homes than ever before, and industrial designers are keeping up with demand by creating truly innovative products. For very little money, you can keep your home organized and mess-free while adding beauty and great design to your spaces. A little imagination, a power drill and screwdriver, and in some cases, pocket money, can transform a small living space into a home that feels airy and uncluttered, freeing you up to enjoy more of your life.

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Deb Goncalves
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Deb's work has appeared on Moms, Babygaga, and WorldAtlas. When she's not working (that's hard to say about a Capricorn), she…
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