St. Anthony's Senior Living

Maximizing Your Space: Creative Storage Solutions for Seniors Downsizing

Downsizing is always a big part of transitioning to senior living. As you move from a full-sized house to a one- or two-bedroom apartment, that means needing to make some decisions about your possessions. To help seniors with this process, we’ve put together a couple of resources containing tips for downsizing and advice on what you should downsize before moving to a senior living community like St. Anthony’s. One aspect to consider when downsizing is the amount of storage you’ll have in your new space!

Senior living apartments typically have one or two good-sized closets, a few small kitchen cabinets, and under-sink storage in the bathroom. But you can maximize your storage space with a little creativity! When downsizing, it’s important to consider ways to ensure your necessities fit neatly in the space you have. Here are six ways to get the most out of your senior living apartment with creative storage solutions.


1. Invest in Shelf Organizers

Shelf organizers come in all shapes and sizes and are a great accessory for optimizing cabinet storage space! Use them in kitchen cabinets, in the bathroom, or even in your closet to take advantage of every corner of storage you have! These organizers can be stacking drawers, tiered shelves, or even a lazy susan to make accessing various cooking oils and spices easier in deep cabinetry.

Acrylic organizers are also handy for keeping your fridge shelves tidy, especially if you’re working with a smaller fridge than you’re used to.


2. Get Compact but Storage-Focused Furniture

Most of your furniture is likely not practical to keep when moving to a senior living community, as your apartment likely won’t have the space for a large sectional or full dining room table. Since you’re already looking into more space-conscious furniture, opt for pieces that include built-in storage! Here are a few furniture items you can use to bring in additional storage space:


  • A TV stand with drawers or cabinets to store your movies, CDs, cables, and books
  • A shoe bench with a lifting lid to keep shoes tucked away while providing nice seating before heading out the door
  • A rolling tiered cart to create extra kitchen storage (and double as a kitchen island)
  • A storage ottoman or coffee table with drawers to keep blankets and pillows handy
  • A nightstand with built-in drawers to store extra clothing or personal items


3. Use Under-Furniture Space

You may already have furniture that suits your needs and not want to deal with offloading it and buying new furniture, but you can still use what you have to create additional storage space! Rolling flat bins can work for even very low-to-the-ground sofas, making every inch of space underneath your furniture into sleek storage. If you already have a nice coffee table, add a basket under the tabletop that will look aesthetically pleasing and give you more places to put things away!


4. Hang It Up

In addition to shelf organizers, there are a ton of different hanging organizers out there to turn walls and doors into storage space! Over-the-door organizers are great for shoes, purses, accessories, toiletries, and spices. Hooks on the walls are a great swap for a coat rack or coat closet, and can even be used in kitchens to hang up aprons and oven mitts. Another idea for freeing up kitchen cabinet space is installing a hanger for pots and pans somewhere in your new kitchen.

In terms of closet space, you can increase your square footage in a few ways. Slim, non-slip velvet hangers are more narrow than plastic or wood hangers. You can also consider hangers designed to hold multiple shirts or pairs of pants with vertical tiers. If the hanging space in your closet starts fairly high up, you might consider adding a tension rod halfway down to double the available storage space!


5. Embrace Vertical Space

Vertical storage is the ultimate small-space hack! This might involve bringing some storage items with you to your new apartment, like an over-the-toilet organizer shelf for more bathroom storage, floating shelves for decor and books, or a sturdy bookshelf. You can also find unexpected and underutilized space in your apartment itself, such as the top of kitchen cabinets.

If you’re taking the vertical space approach, just be sure to keep safety in mind! If you need a step stool to reach items, it might be worth reconsidering that particular storage option to reduce the risk of falling.


6. Think Functionally

Above all, you want your storage solutions to be functional and practical for living comfortably! Be consistent with how you store things, giving every item you own a specific home so you don’t create a lot of clutter on the floor and surfaces. For storing heavier items, keep them at elbow height or lower so you don’t have to lift them from high shelves. Anything you don’t use regularly, like holiday decorations, should be stored in the least convenient storage slots, as you’ll only need to access them occasionally.


Maximize Your Retirement at St. Anthony’s Senior Living!

Senior living at St. Anthony’s in Kansas City is more than just a downsized apartment — our residents enjoy top-of-the-line amenities from five-star dining to an accessible fitness center and even an on-site salon and spa. This is your chance to refresh your lifestyle and settle into a beautiful new routine with like-minded peers who can’t wait to welcome you home.

If you’re interested in learning more about your options for senior living in Kansas City, get in touch with us at St. Anthony’s!