In student housing, having a big and spacious property will get you far. Not all properties have that luxury, but it doesn’t mean smaller rooms aren’t fit for purpose.
You have to be a little economical with what you’ve got and find ways to create the illusion of more space to make a room look larger. Clever interior design plus the right furniture and furnishings will help greatly with this.
To help you get the most out of your space, we’ve put together our top seven tips to make a room look larger in a student property.
1. Choose Multi-Use Furniture
Furniture takes up a lot of space in student rooms. Some of the bigger examples include:
Desk and chair
Shelves for textbooks
In a small student bedroom, all this furniture fills out the space completely, giving the impression that there’s no more room left. But necessity is the mother of invention.
Yes, beds take up a lot of the floor space, but a divan means a bed can easily double up as a storage option. It’s the same for the desk. With drawers or built-in shelving, you can create plenty of storage space for your student residents, so their room doesn’t feel packed to the ceiling.
Modular pieces are also a good option. If space is limited, a fold-away chair or collapsable table means they can be put away until they’re needed to save on room.
2. Colour Coordination
If you only have a small space to offer student tenants, the colours you choose to decorate each room in will have a huge impact on how spacious they feel.
Light colours are bright and airy, and they maximise the effect of natural light. On the reverse side of the coin, dark colours absorb natural light, which can make a room feel smaller and constrictive.
The right colour scheme creates an optical illusion. It can make a room look larger than it really is. Beige is hardly the colour of choice for students, so we would recommend staying away from dull, overly-neutral tones.
A shade of light blue or green is a much better fit for student bedrooms. They give a pop of colour without ruining the illusion of space.
3. Emphasise Height
To give the illusion of space as much as possible, you need to emphasise height wherever you can. For example, if floor space is limited in one of your student bedrooms, a wide bookshelf will only take up more valuable room.
A tall, slim bookshelf can provide just as much storage, and it also makes the best use out of the vertical space available. They draw the eye upwards, shifting attention away from the floor space.
Tall and slender wardrobes can be used similarly. The top section is perfect for hanging clothes, while internal storage sections can be used to put away folded items and shoe collections.
You can also low profile furniture to give the impression of greater height, as there’s a lower centre of gravity. When you sit on a chair or sofa that’s shorter than average, it can make a room look larger when you tilt your head up.
Finally, floor to ceiling curtains have the same effect on a room that tall and slim bookshelves and wardrobes have. They create a soft guide for the eyes to follow, encouraging students to take in all the space available.
4. Be Smart With Accessories
Creating a room that’s just right for students and ready to move into at the drop of a hat is challenging. But don’t let the need to create the perfect space cloud your judgement. You might think adding accessories left, right and centre will show you’ve put some thought into the decor, but it can actually have the opposite effect.
Every room needs a few accessories. Rugs can anchor the floor space, scatter cushions add a touch of colour, and throws bring an extra layer of comfort. But which accessories you use, how many you provide and in what colour can all either help or hinder your aim to create more space.
Being smart with accessories is a tough balancing act, so make sure to ask an expert for advice first.
5. The Magic of Mirrors
Mirrors are a great way to make a room look larger, which is why they have been a staple in interior design for years. Not only do they make a space appear bigger, they create a brighter and airier effect as well.
A bonus tip from our Design team, placing a mirror next to a window will reflect the view from the outdoors. This makes the room feel open and catches more natural light. Spaces feel less confined and the sunlight brings out the colour and finish of the room interior much better than artificial light can.
6. Introduce Natural Elements
While the mirrors are busy catching natural light for your student residents, you can add a few more natural touches to each room as well.
Houseplants bring depth and character to a room. They soften corners and convince the eye into thinking there’s more space available, which in turn will make a room look larger.
Incorporating nature into living areas (biophilic design) has the added benefit of helping your student residents with their wellbeing, too. Plants and other natural elements are well known for reducing stress and anxiety, and increasing cognitive abilities; traits that come in very handy for uni students who are juggling a demanding workload.
And for students that prefer a more hands-off approach to plantcare, you can always substitute the real thing for a life-like faux version.
7. Partner With LOFT to Make a Room Look Larger
Want everything we’ve listed above and more the easy way? LOFT specialises in fitting out student properties.
With our award-winning Design team, Product Procurement specialists and 18 years in the business, we know exactly how to fashion the perfect student property to make a room look larger and to keep you and your tenants happy.
See how we can be of help by contacting a member of our team today.