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Convert Overlooked Spaces into Livable Area

Unless you live in a minimalist micro-house, you are probably not using all available space in your home as effectively as you could. Most houses feature small spaces and areas that are left unused or under-utilized. If redesigned and used effectively, these spaces may have unrealized potential to improve your home’s usability and even increase its resale value. Here are four simple ways you can convert overlooked spaces in your home into usable, livable areas.

1.    Convert Your Guest Bedroom Closet into a Cloffice

If you are strapped for space, consider converting your guest bedroom closet into a cloffice. The concept has been around for a long time, but with the explosion in people working from home, some families have been stretched for comfortable and productive at-home work surfaces.

A standard cloffice setup features a desk and multiple built-in or floating storage shelves. It should also have a comfortable ergonomic office chair that you can place under the desk or fold and store when not in use.

Your cloffice should also feature sufficient lighting and electrical work to fit an office environment to avoid relying on battery-powered solutions. Consider installing fluorescent ceiling lights with a switch you can reach from a seated position. You will also need at least one wall outlet for your computer and other devices.

Depending on your preferences, you can keep or remove the closet doors for your cloffice. Going incognito and keeping the doors enables you to close them at the end of your workday, separating your work and home life.

Alternatively, you can opt for a doorless design, giving your cloffice a more spacious feel, creating a work nook, and opening up the room as a whole.

2.    Repurpose Your Space Under the Stairs

One of the most frequently overlooked spaces inside a house is the area under the stairs.

Although this may seem like a small space with few potential uses aside from miscellaneous storage, there are many ways to reconfigure it into a practical part of the house. Here are a few examples:

●      Create an under stairs wine cellar

You know you need to store your bottles horizontally in a cool, dark, and humid place for optimal preservation if you’re a wine enthusiast.

An under stairs wine cellar is a relatively inexpensive way of storing your collection of wine bottles, especially if your house does not have a basement or a butler pantry. With the right materials and air conditioning setup, you can convert your under stairs space into an adequately ventilated and temperature-controlled wine storage space.

●      Turn it into a pantry

If the available space under your stairs is more limited, you can repurpose what’s available into a pantry.

Under stairs pantry configurations are simple yet useful storage spaces, such as shelves for your non-perishables or bins for your miscellaneous kitchen supplies.

You can also turn the space into a micro-kitchen or coffee station, where you can store your coffee maker, grinder, mug rack, and other essentials like syrups, spoons, and napkins.

●      Turn it into a charging station

A charging station is a dedicated part of the house for storing the chargers for all your electronics and mobile devices, including phones, tablets, laptops, and smartwatches.

All you need to build a charging station is a shelf, a wall socket and appropriate wiring, and a power strip.

A designated charging station is also a great location for storing your children’s electronics after bedtime.

●      Transform it into a home library

Create a cozy reading nook by transforming the space under your stairs into a bookcase. Cube shelving installed in the space works perfectly for this project. You can also add features like wainscotting to give the bookcase a built-in look that helps it blend with the rest of your home.

●      Create a kids playhouse

Give your kids a dedicated space to play by creating a playhouse under the stairs. After attaching drywall, cut out door and window holes, and paint the exterior. Lay a small patch of carpet on the interior and add shelves inside to store their toys.

●      Build a luxury pet crate

You can turn your under stairs area into a luxuriously spacious puppy crate to keep your fur baby safe. Adding a glass door or wrought iron bars to the front of the space ensures your pup can see out but can’t escape and get into mischief elsewhere in the house.

3.    Create a Mudroom off the Backdoor

If your house has a backdoor connected to a small entryway or room that you can’t seem to find a good use for, why not convert it into a mudroom?

Installing a low bench (16” to 20” tall) gives you a dedicated shoe bench, but it can also serve as a convenient storage space for the family’s shoes and boots, along with a boot dryer for drying wet cleats, tennis shoes, and boots. You should also install a set of hooks or a horizontal bar to hang coats and backpacks.

If you have an unused closet, you can gain additional space by tearing out the old doors, framing, shelving, and rods, converting it into a nook for outdoor gear storage, such as sports equipment or yard toys.

If you have pets, a mudroom can be an excellent space to install a half-tub and sink so you can easily bathe and groom your dogs.

4.    Add a Dormer to the Attic

Have you ever wanted to turn your attic into a livable space? If your roof can support it, consider adding a dormer to the roof.

The extra space is critical for turning the attic into a permanent living space, such as a bedroom. On top of adding extra headroom, a dormer can give you the space necessary to install critical amenities, such as insulation, HVAC ductwork, electrical wiring, and wall outlets.

If there is enough space between the attic and the floor underneath, consider completing the project by installing stairs, making access safer.

There are many other potential advantages to consider:

  • A dormer adds a window, and therefore, natural light and ventilation. These changes significantly increase the area’s livability.
  • The dormer windows can act as an extra exit point during emergencies, which can save lives.
  • The additions improve the house’s architectural value and appearance, potentially increasing its resale value.
  • Turning an attic into living space may increase the house’s square footage without building a new floor, making the existing property more valuable and desirable.

Improve Your Home’s Value With Big State Construction

Big State Construction is a Houston-based team of home renovation and home improvement specialists with over 15 years of experience. Let us help you convert overlooked spaces into usable areas. Call us today at (713) 574-8956 for more information on how we can help transform your home.

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