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With Australian homes getting smaller, many of us are having the make the most of what space we have. Here are clever ways to make a small home look bigger.

It’s official – Aussie homes are getting smaller. The average size of an Australian home is now 189.8sqm – the smallest figure in two decades.

Although Aussies still have the second largest homes in the world, with US abodes averaging 204.3sqm, many home owners are now having to make do with smaller blocks and interiors due to cheaper prices, closer proximity to work and amenities, or necessity. The popularity of apartments and semis has also contributed to the dwindling dwelling sizes. Additionally, whilst McMansions are still being built, there’s now fewer of them and less “quarter acre blocks” of yesteryear.

If you’re unable to structurally make your home bigger, then there are still ways to create more space with clever cosmetic renovations, which will increase the value if you sell or want to re-finance

— Joanna Pretty, General Manager, State Custodians

Consider these tips:

  1. Choose one type of flooring

    A hodge podge of different flooring styles can create a bit of a cluttered feel. Instead, choose one type of consistent flooring to flow from one area to another uninterrupted. Light coloured wooden floorboards, or less expensive wood laminate are a good choice. Plus go for wider boards instead of narrow ones, as the floor will look more expansive.

  2. Paint light-coloured walls

    As light walls reflect sunlight, white or neutral coloured walls will maximise the effects of natural light in a space, making it appear bigger and brighter. Painting door trims and skirting boards in a slightly lighter shade will also help the surfaces to recede as well.

  3. Make window treatments seamless

    Keep window finishings the same colour as walls for a more seamless look. Also, if you have curtains hang them high and let them fall to the floor which will give the illusion of height.

  4. Hang mirrors correctly

    Mirrors are great for tricking the eye. Hang mirrors opposite a window or view to add bonus light, or to give the illusion of expanse.

  5. Add in clever storage

    Clutter is the number one thing guaranteed to make your home feel smaller than it is. Clear stuff out of sight with clever storage. Make sure built in wardrobes have good shelving and no dead space areas. If there is space above the wardrobe, place attractive baskets for your stuff on top. Utilise space under beds, within ottomans and anywhere else you can think of.

  6. Install the right shelving

    Go for a combination of open and closed shelving. A room such as a kitchen with all open shelving can look cluttered with all your plates and cups on show. However, cabinets that are all completely closed can look bulky. A combination of the two will give you just the right amount of storage and illusion of space.

  7. Make art fit the part

    Instead of lots of tiny artworks clustered onto a wall, one big artwork can really make the room feel expansive. Try to use a few of the same colours in the artwork to match bedding or rugs, which creates an overall feeling of cohesion and openness.

  8. Don’t bulk up with furniture

    Choosing the right furniture for a small space is essential. Too many overly large, clunky pieces will look make your home look overstuffed whilst lots of little pieces of furniture will clutter it. Lounges on elevated legs where you can see the space underneath won’t clutter up the look. A round table shape usually takes up less space than a rectangle and side tables instead of featuring a big coffee table in the lounge room are less domineering.

  • Use a calculator to get an estimate of how much you can borrow.
    Try one here.

  • See if you qualify. To get a more accurate idea of how much you can borrow with State Custodians,
    click here.

  • Call our Lending Specialists and they can do the calculation for you over the phone plus answer any questions you have at the time. Talk to us on 13 72 62.