Making the Most of the Small Space in a Retirement Home

By sdugas - March 17th 2014.

Transitioning into a retirement home can be a difficult process. Not only do you need to let go of the past emotionally and mentally, in many cases, you’ll also be required to let go physically, purging possessions in order to accommodate your new space. If you’re used to living in your own home, downsizing to a single room or suite in a retirement community can be quite the adjustment. Luckily, there are ways that you can make the most of a small apartment maximize the space in your new retirement home.

1. Filter Through the Memories

Mature Woman Embracing Husband The first step in the downsizing process is also the most difficult. Not only will you need to get rid of a considerable amount of your stuff in order to adjust to your new surroundings, you’ll also have to go through the tiring and often painful process of reliving the memories that are attached to each discarded item.  Take your time with this process. It’s not suppose to be easy, so give yourself plenty of time to tackle the task. If you come across items that you simply cannot part with, consider gifting them to a loved one or taking a photo. Both of these actions will help preserve the memory and make it easier for you to let it go.

2. Ask About Paint Options

Colour can have a huge impact on the look and feel of your new home. If your space is painted in dark colours, for example, it will feel cramped and uncomfortable. Light colours, can help contribute to a spacious and airy sense of space. If you’re not happy with the colour of your retirement accommodations at Sharon Village Care Homes, consider talking to the property manager. Modifications may be allowed.

3. Look Up

If you’re struggling to find enough storage space in your new retirement home, the answer could be right above your head. Vertical space that would otherwise go unused can often be converted into storage for out-of-the-way items. Consider investing in storage units that can be installed on the wall or added to the top of existing shelving. Just remember to be reasonable with your storage. There’s no point in installing floor to ceiling shelving units if you can’t safely reach the uppermost areas.

4. Resist the Urge to Cram Everything In

If you’re tempted to fill every corner of your new retirement suite with knick-knacks, furniture and memorabilia, do your best to resist it. Filling every inch of a smaller space will only help contribute to a claustrophobic feeling. The easiest way to reduce clutter and a closed-in feeling within a retirement home is through the use of furniture. Avoid monstrous sofas and expansive armchairs. Instead, invest in smaller, compact condo-like items. This will help open up the floor plan of your retirement apartment, further creating the illusion of space.

5. Consider Professional Help

Professional movers, organizations and interior designers can be an absolute heaven-sent in this situation. Not only will they provide you with the proper tools to enhance your space, but they can also offer you tips and tricks for maintaining a sense of spaciousness going forward. Sure, their services will cost you a little extra, but the peace of mind that comes with their assistance will be worth every penny.

Don’t let a smaller space cramp your retirement style – check out our New Resident Checklist for more quick and easy tips for transitioning to retirement home living. The accommodations at our Sharon Village Care Homes are designed to provide you with a spacious place to age and enjoy your golden years. Book a temporary stay at one of our retirement home locations today and experience what your future can hold.