One of the great challenges of life is that families grow while homes do not. New children are born, family members are invited to stay in times of strife, and family pets join the mix. As your family grows, you often have two options. The first is to simply move somewhere larger. But what if you love your home, own your home, or are even living on beloved family property? You may not want to move, and the memories of your family so far have been lovingly stored in the walls and furniture that surround you.
So as your family grows, how can you make the home more spacious and welcoming to large numbers without knocking down the walls or building an addition? One great solution is to "go murphy" everywhere in your house. In other words, start installing built-in, fold-up, and multi-purpose furniture in the home that takes up less space while providing greater functionality than ever before. As experts in murphy furniture and doors, we're here to share a few great tips to grow your family and live comfortably in a small family home.
1. Use Kids Bunk Beds, Fold-Up Beds, and Roll-Away Beds
The number one space-eater for a growing family is beds. Smaller families tend to expect one floor-set bed and one bedroom per child, but that's not always realistic. In fact, children often prefer to share a room and stacked beds even when given the option to spread out. So stack those beds, or pick beds that can fold up when they're not in use.
Some bunk bed designs can stack three beds high if your ceilings can support them. Alternatively, you can install a murphy bed that folds up into the wall to create a playroom when the beds aren't in use. Many families also enjoy a roll-away bed that stows underneath the first bedframe and rolls out handily for the youngest child or visiting guests — again revealing an open playroom floor when the bed is rolled away.
2. Try Fold-Away Tables
The dining table is one of the biggest footprints in a family home. The dining table is also essential for shared family meals and large family gatherings. But most of the time, that table probably isn't in use or is only serving as a surface for household clutter. One of the best murphy furniture tricks is a dining table (along with other household tables) that can fold up into the wall when not in use. The legs fold inward like a card table. Then the table either swings up or folds in half while moving into the wall. With the chairs pushed to the side or stacked, suddenly you have a lot of floor space back when dinner is not being served.
3. Save Space With Convertible Homework Desks
Desks are another great convertible piece of furniture that traditionally takes up more space than necessary. A desk and chair can take up a 3' by 3' space or larger for each desk. But they don't have to. A "secretary" is a desk that folds the writing surface back up into its own cabinetry. Murphy desks can actually fold down from the wall itself. They can double as a chalkboard or a picture frame when the underside is showing while folded.
You can even get creative with furniture choices that serve as a desk and something else. Alternatively, choose desks that transform into other things with a bit of fun folding. Homework doesn't have to take up space when the homework is done.
4. Create Closet Space With Storage Doors
Finally, let's not underestimate the need for organized storage or overestimate the limited closet space that most homes feature. Instead of going for clunky dressers that take up more of your precious floor space, try getting creative with doors instead. Murphy doors, a special type of murphy furniture, can double your storage space easily.
Did you know that a door can double as a well-organized cabinet? Double the capacity of small bedroom closets by making the closet door a murphy door designed for storage on both sides of the panel — inside and outside the closet.
You can even disguise a few doors. Present them as shelves, display cases, and cubby-filled toy storage for the kids. Turn the pantry door into an organized ingredient display, or turn the laundry door into an everything-at-hand workstation.
Here at Murphy Door, we believe that any piece of murphy furniture can hold more than one purpose — especially when it comes to the doors in your home. For more great space-saving insights that will delight the kids and make room for your growing family, contact us today! We are proud to offer a wide variety of home storage options. We even have custom Murphy doors to suit your ideal vision of a creative family home.