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Turnkey Real Estate Investing

4 min read

6 Easy Renovations to Open Up Small Rental Property Spaces

Tue, Jun 27, 2017

rentalproperties-storagesolutions.jpgNo one likes to feel cramped in their home, and the same is true of tenants when it comes to their rentals. As an owner and investor, one of the best things you can do for your rental properties is to get into the mind of the tenant—see what they value, learn what they love, and tailor your properties after their needs.

While you can’t hit the target for every renter, you can brush in broad strokes and hit on the basic needs and desires that everyone has for a home.

And one of those needs is definitely space. Not only do tenants want to have real physical space to live, work, and place, but they need their home to give them that space. Enough room to feel comfortable and cozy, but not cramped. They need enough room to store their things to keep them out of sight and out of mind if needed.

Unfortunately, rental properties aren’t always ideal when it comes to square footage and space. And creating space isn’t always cost-effective. So what’s an owner to do?

They’re to find creative solutions that create space and storage solutions for their rental properties, that’s what!

6 Cost-Effective Space & Storage Solutions for Rental Properties

Light & Neutral

The colors utilized in your rental property can go a long way into making your space feel closed off and cramped. We’re already told to go neutral with our paint palettes when it comes to wall paint, but did you know that the tone can also dramatically affect the perception of your space? Colors that are rich or dark actually make spaces feel small because they absorb light, as opposed to light colors, which reflect light. Therefore, light, neutral colors are the ideal for your rental properties. They make your space seem bright and bigger. It’s likely why the ‘all white’ trend is so popular!

Mirror, Mirror

When staging a property for viewing, mirrors can provide the illusion of space. While you don’t want to utilize them too obviously, subtly placing a larger mirror in the entryway can make a big impact. Multiple mirror in the room can seemingly extend the size! Just be sure they’re facing the same direction.

Open Shelving

Open shelves are a way to work in both extra light and storage in your rental property. It’s the feeling of an open concept without having to knock down any walls or drastically alter any floorplans. For example, take two rooms that would be ideally ‘open’ and cut out space in the wall between them. Instead of leaving that space open or tearing down the wall, you create shelving in that space. Now there’s a unique storage solution, more room for light, and the illusion of more space.

Kitchen Makeover

Kitchen feeling cramped? Kitchens are some of the most costly rooms to make over. If you don’t want to go full remodel, there are a few things you can do to help the perception of your space issue. One, you can remove or raise overhead cabinets. Low-hanging cabinets can feel claustrophobic. If you remove them, have a storage solution in mind to make up for lost space, such as wall hook for utensils or mugs.

Paint can go a long way in the kitchen, too. Dark, outdated cabinets in a small space can make the room feel cramped. Try a lighter, brighter color or wood to spruce things up.


Built-ins are great for every rental property. One, they save your tenant valuable square footage. If they have storage provided for them in the form of built-in shelving, that’s a few less bookshelves they’ll be bringing in to take up space. They can also create the illusion of depth and space. Try installing a shelf high up, near the ceiling. Or construction built-in storage in the forms of window bench seating, shelves, and the like.

Window Treatments

Windows can create illusions. When you’re showing a property, you can create the illusion of bigger space and bigger windows by doing several things. One, leave off the curtains. If you do opt for curtains, frame the ceiling, not the window. Still, the more light you let in unobstructed, the better. Curtains can enhance a feeling of clutter. Blinds can offered plenty of privacy without sacrificing space.

No matter how you choose to renovate your rental property spaces, your ultimate goal in creating space and storage solutions is to attract and retain tenants. As an owner, if you can keep your high-quality tenants longer, the better your rental income will be!

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Chris Clothier
Written by Chris Clothier

Entrepreneur, writer, speaker, ultra-endurance athlete, husband & father of five beautiful children. Chris puts these natural talents on display every day. As a partner at REI Nation, Chris addresses small and large audiences of real estate investors and business professionals nationwide several times each year. Chris is also an active writer, weekly publishing real estate, leadership, and endurance training articles.