College move-in season is in full swing! As your child prepares to head off to one of the most important milestones of their life, you’re probably scouring stores trying to figure out what the heck they actually need. Do they really need this many towels? Where will they fit all these pots and pans? After all, they’re going to be sharing this small dorm with another person, and you don’t want them climbing over each other every morning to get to class. It can all be overwhelming. You know space is at a premium, and that’s why you need to be smart about dorm room storage solutions. Here are some of our best tips and tricks for making the most of their tiny space.
Utilize Space Under Your Bed
Space is limited in a dorm room, so you want to help your child to maximize every inch. One of the best ways to keep floor space from accumulating clutter is to use the area under their bed to store items.
We love this Underbed storage bin from Target. Its wheels make it easy to slide across the floor (without worrying about damage), and the clear plastic makes it quick to spot much-needed sweaters, cookware, or extra linens. Students can also use it to pack away sweaters and jackets they no longer need when the weather warms up.
Save Money with DIY Storage
Forget shelling out for a $300 Pottery Barn ottoman and help your college guy or gal make their own. We love this no-sew ottoman that pulls double duty as storage and an extra seat. Your future college grad can pick out their favorite pattern to make it uniquely their own. Best of all? They can take it with them to furnish that first, tiny out-of-school apartment.
Make the Most of Your Walls
Eventually, there are only so many ottomans, storage bins, and shelves you can fit into a tiny dorm with two people. One of the best ways to prevent storage bins from taking over is to take advantage of the walls and doors.
Instead of getting a clunky, oversized bin for your child’s shoes, try this over-the-door shoe organizer. Or opt for this hanging storage unit (with drawers) to rescue the floor space from yet another Ikea shelf.
Choose Items That Pull Double Duty
Multi-purpose items not only benefit your child for their dorm but later in life when they get their first 300 square foot apartment in Brooklyn. Having things that pull double duty can clear up valuable floor space and prevent clutter, which is easier on the eyes.
For example, this three-drawer cart can function as a nightstand and storage for towels, makeup, shoes, or extra sheets. It also has wheels, making it easy to move around for vacuuming the room.
Choose Smaller Appliances
Despite their name, mini-fridges can take up an awful lot of room. Even coffee makers, like smartphones, seem to be getting bigger and bigger each year. To make your student’s small space theirs (and not the espresso machines), we recommend down-sizing where they can so that appliances don’t take over the room.
This compact mini fridge not only stays quiet but is small enough to be tucked under a large desk or slip into the corner of a room. If your college-bound kid is a coffee drinker, we highly recommend this Cuisinart Coffee Maker. It’s compact and takes up very little space in an already cramped dorm. We also love that it has a 30-minute automatic shut-off if someone forgets to turn it off (we don’t know anyone like that).
Getting your kid ready for the biggest transition of their life can be stressful, especially when it seems like they have a massive checklist of stuff they need and no space to put it. But with a bit of creativity, you can squeeze the essentials into that small space using these clever dorm storage ideas.