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3 tips for maximising space in an HMO

When it comes to shared living, we all know that space comes at a premium!

So how can you make the most of a living space that will serve multiple people, whist still retaining a comfortable and stylish environment?

1. Multi-task with multipurpose furniture

Opt for furniture that will serve dual purposes to maximise functionality without overcrowding the space. Here are some of my favourite examples....

Nesting side tables are a great option as they can be stacked together when they’re not being used, or spread out to provide additional surface areas when the time’s right. Habitat has some great options.

Coffee tables with hidden storage like this one from Daals will help to keep the place looking neat and tidy (there’s always hope!)

Extendable dining tables like this Scandi inspired dining table from Cult Furniture extends from a 6 - 10 seater, perfect for those one-off social gatherings!

2. Get clever with space-efficient solutions

Incorporate solutions like built-in shelves, under-bed drawers, or wall-mounted cabinets to make the most of every inch of available space and retain a more organised living environment.

Built-in Shelving: Make the most of vertical space by installing built-in shelves along walls to store books, plants and other belongings. In bedrooms, make it adjustable to allow for customisation. Thanks to for this showcase of how tailor made cabinetry can hide a multitude of sins.

Wall-mounted drop-leaf table: In a compact kitchens or dining areas, this can be perfect for providing additional dining space when needed, without occupying floor space at all times.. These space-saving tables can be folded down against the wall when not in use, making them ideal for compact HMOs. A great idea in small bedrooms for desk space too. Take a look at Ikea for inspiration…

Under-Bed Storage: Order your divan bases with drawer storage compartments or ask a joiner to make a bedframe with storage out of MDF. Under the mattress is dead space and is ideal for storing bulky items like suitcases, seasonal clothing and other less used items. 

Wall-Mounted Cabinets: Install wall-mounted cabinets in kitchens, bathrooms, or common areas to provide additional storage for crockery, toiletries, cleaning supplies, or other essentials. This frees up valuable floor space and helps keep clutter to a minimum.

Stackable Seating: Choose stackable chairs or benches that can be conveniently stored away when not in use, to free up precious floor space in dining areas or multipurpose rooms. Look for lightweight yet sturdy designs that are easy to stack and store away. La Redoute sells this great little hardy, stackable dining chair for industrial style interiors.

3. Modular furniture

I love furniture that can be easily reconfigured to adapt to changing needs or accommodate different room layouts. This flexibility can be brilliant in HMOs where tenants are likely to have varying preferences or space requirements.

Modular Sofas: Often contemporary in style, they offer flexibility in configuration, so you can create custom seating arrangements to suit the layout of each room or the usage of the room at any given time. Result! The range sell Julian Bowen’s well-priced Lago sofa which comes in the usual grey and this dreamy blue.

Modular Shelving Units: Consider modular storage systems with interchangeable components that can be assembled in various configurations. Great for living areas and for supplying tenants with similar levels of bedroom storage, where bedroom shapes and sizes vary.

And if Ikea can’t help you, I’m not sure who can! 


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