To get the most out of a property, it is important to utilise as much space as possible. This is what makes conversions so popular, but there is one area that often gets overlooked: beneath the staircase!
The space underneath a typical staircase is often left closed off, which is a big shame as it can offer a good amount of room in a highly convenient area. A popular choice is to convert the area to a bathroom, but it can also serve as valuable storage space.
Of course, there is a big difference between utilising storage space and just filling it with as much junk as you can pack in. With the right idea you can utilise the space in a way that is not only functional but also decorative, making it an attractive area which will heighten the appeal of your property.
Before you get started it is important to take the right precautions. If the space under your stairs is closed off by a stud wall, be sure to have it inspected by a local builder, as it could have a structural purpose. For help creating bespoke furniture or storage for the space, speak to a local carpenter. This can be an excellent way to turn awkwardly shaped space into something practical and valuable.
One of the most straightforward ways to utilise under-stairs space is to turn it into a closed off cupboard!
The staircase in an average property is one of the main hubs of the home, with people constantly coming and going. As such, it can be an ideal area to create storage for anything that you need close to hand, such as cleaning equipment or even just coats and shoes.
Even if the space is small or awkwardly shaped, you still have a few options. You could invest in a wheeled trolley to let you get things in and out of your cupboard quickly, and you can always utilise the door for additional hanging storage.
With a sturdy lock, an under-stairs cupboard can also be the perfect place for a Pro to keep their tools safe!
With the help of a good quality carpenter, almost any space can be filled with bespoke shelving. They will need to visit your property to take measurements, but once everything is ready they should be able to tell you if what you want is feasible, as well as sharing a few ideas of their own!
Remember, shelves can be decorative as well as functional. Even something as simple as a set of wicker baskets can make a great impression; try to think of what photos, plants or other accessories you would like to add.
Most if not all properties need to find room for utilities. Your boiler and circuit breaker need to go somewhere; if only there were an easily accessible space tucked out of sight, like an under-stairs cupboard!
Relocating your utilities like this can also provide you with more space elsewhere. For example, if you wanted to move a boiler from your loft, the loft could then be perfect for a conversion project.
Just remember, utilities should only be handled by qualified trade professionals. If you want to relocate your boiler, have the work done by a local heating engineer. Similarly, a breaker should only be moved by a trained electrician.
If you want a simple way to use the area under your stairs without taking up too much space, there is always the option of placing a wine rack there. This can be a classy feature for a property, as well as one that will help potential buyers to see how your space can be utilised without you having to spend too much money.
Naturally, you could fill the space with any piece of furniture as long as it is the right size. Take some measurements of your space, then look online and in show rooms to see what your options are. Remember, there are plenty of stories out there of people who found the ideal furniture for their home improvement project hidden away in a charity shop!
If you are lucky enough to have ample room under your staircase, you have the option of turning it into living space. Rather than filling the area with shelving, why not add a single shelf and turn the rest into a comfortable little reading nook? Several homeowners even install desks under their stairs to create tiny functional office space.
Even if you are just being decorative, you are still taking advantage of valuable unused space in your home. A fantastic idea that we keep seeing is to turn the space into a ‘pet nook’, with some room to store food and toys and the rest used for a big comfortable pet bed.