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How to Organize Small Living Spaces in Washington DC

When living in DC, we love the access to an incredible community, unique shops, award-winning restaurants, and amazing sights. A cost to achieving this abundant city life might be the size of your living space. As property managers, we have seen it all when it comes to small spaces in Washington, DC. This post will highlight the best storage solutions we have learned from our excellent team at Flock, our tenants, and our homeowners!


1: Declutter, Shop with Intention and Only Keep What You Use and Love

You don't have to look far to find a show or book on decluttering and organization! From Marie Kondo to The Home Edit, it's evident that we need decluttering in our lives!

Decluttering is the first step in organizing your space and might just be the thing you need to make a giant impact on your home. 

Remember decluttering is an ongoing process. The extra space will feel great, but you'll need to circle back around. Decluttering on a seasonal basis seems to work for most in the DC areas as we transition from season to season, depending on the weather and activities you're involved in.

Likewise to decluttering, being more intentional and protective of what comes into your home is also essential! Become used to saying "no, thank you" to items that don't work for your space. You can apply this to an item you love in a store or a free piece from family or friends.

Even if it's free or you love it, it may still work in your space and cause more frustration than good. If you can't turn the item away, consider replacing it with something you already have that you don't love or need.

Pro Tips: Set realistic goals for decluttering. 

Have three boxes labeled Trash, Donate, and Relocate and go through every item in the space you're focusing on. You can block an achievable time frame out of your day and declutter as much as you can in the block. Repeat that process as frequently as possible until your entire space is clutter-free.


You can pick one space at a time. Choose one room, closet, cabinet, or drawer, and determine how frequently you can handle these tasks. Even the smallest junk drawer overhaul can make your home feel better. 


2: Hidden Storage

These tips come straight from our property management experts. 

When purchasing storage containers, find clear bins and always stay within the medium size. Clear containers will help you see what you have and make retrieving items more accessible. 

Not going beyond the medium-sized box is essential for moving bins around. When you get a bin, it seems human nature to fill it to its total capacity. The bigger the bin, the more weight you'll add, making it very difficult to move and rearrange. Save yourself and your back by only purchasing up to medium-size storage containers. 

We like this stackable clear weathertight bin from Ace Hardware. 

Never store items in a water heater closet next to HVAC or electrical panels. Those spaces are essential to your property care. This extra step will ensure that technicians can quickly service your utilities and that you can identify minor problems before they become big ones.

Pro Tip: Think under beds and add shelving to your closets if you're looking for additional storage in a small property. Heed these suggestions, and your future self will thank you. You'll be able to find what you need, move around quickly and care for your home correctly.

3: Creative Storage in Plain Sight

Storage is much more fun when it can double as decor and furniture. Chests are used as coffee tables to store blankets, and you can hang your hats as decor near your entryway and bedrooms. Show stop by hanging your bike as wall art. When in doubt, add a hook to lend an extra hand to hold your bags, coats, and leashes. This keeps your most used items within reach and off other surfaces. 

4: Everything Has a Home

Creating designated areas for specific items and uses helps make clean-up a breeze and makes locating things simple! Take it further by creating "zones" or "stations" for particular tasks like pet care or a workstation. Collecting similar items or items you use together in the same space will make your life easier and your home more functional. 


5: Hire for Expertise

When in dire need, go to the pro! There are numerous decluttering and home organization companies in the Washington, DC, area for hire. If you need your home to function at peak efficiency, consider hiring a professional who can come in and walk you through the entire process. It's good to think of time and space as benefits to your lifestyle. Make sure you're making the most of your property! 

Small properties don't have to feel limited. With intention and creativity, you can find the storage you need, the aesthetic you desire, and the life you have been dreaming of.


While we are thrilled to pass along information that helps you in your Washington, DC, home, we also love hearing from you! The people reading this article are probably here to find some solutions for the organization, and if you have any tips, we'd love to share them! What solutions do you have for living in your small Washington, DC space?

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Flock DC is a family of companies laser focused on people and place.

We manage home and tend to our community.

Happy modern dwellers and happy homeowners cultivate stronger, sustainable, more equitable and robust local communities and economies. We are a mission driven, values based motherbird that privileges purpose over profit.

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