Your home is your haven, but you’re not going to love it until it’s a functional home, and that doesn’t happen on its own. It requires planning. Invest in some “you time” to get your home underway. You’re going to love it.

1. Arranging Your Arrangement

Take a look around your home, and decide how each room should look. If you have a family room, keeping the couches in an “L” or “U” shape works well, but if you feel crowded when you enter a room, change it to an open layout.

2. Your Belongings

You need to keep a tidy home, but it’s not going to stay that way if it isn’t functional. For instance, it’s a good idea to keep a shoe rack or bin close to the front door to avoid shoes strung about. Set up a coffee station in your kitchen equipped with stirring spoons, sugar, creamer, coffee and coffee mugs. Grouping like items together saves time.

3. Get Creative

Create solutions with what you have. Avoid cluttering your home with new things. If you must buy things for your home, make sure they add to its efficiency. For instance, if you’re a list person, invest in some multi-colored wet-erase markers, and write directly on your fridge. Test this out first to make sure it doesn’t stain. Keep your “to do” list, the kids’ chores chart, shopping lists and special notes on the fridge.

4. Use Your Space Wisely

Make the most of your home by utilizing spaces you normally wouldn’t. For instance, your home’s foyer is most likely empty or contains a few items. Keep umbrellas, jackets, hoodies, purses, keys and scarves by the front door, so that you can grab them at a moment’s notice. This frees up your home from awkward clutter.

Photo by Alair Homes AuroraBrowse living room photos

5. Get the Kids On-Board

Make cleanup a breeze. With storage bins, divide your kids’ belongings according to themes: building toys, educational toys or make-believe that include costumes, teapots and tiaras. Let them play with one bin at a time. When they’re done, everything goes back into the same bin.

6. Hide and Seek, Later, When You Need It

Clutter gets in the way of efficiency. You don’t have to get rid of your belongings; however, taking advantage of hidden spaces can streamline the appearance of your interior. For instance, use additional shelving within your existing cabinets, utilize the space next to your fridge, use the rafters in your garage, get closet organizers, or use lazy Susan’s in your pantry.

7. Take it Outside

Outdoor rooms have been big for a while now, but there’s an added benefit or two to creating an outdoor room: You can free up your home to declutter it, and you can create a whole other functional space for your needs.

8. Maximize Your Space

If you have a lonely closet that only serves to store coats on rare occasions, think of converting it into a small office or homework station for the kids. Use foldable doors to hide your office while not in use. You can always place hooks on the wall to store coats.

9. Multi-Purpose Rooms

Forget about obtaining permits to do an add-on. Use high bookshelves, curtains or opaque materials to create the illusion of a wall. Divide an existing room to create a multitude of uses, such as a reading nook, hangout spot or playroom.

10. Extra Bed Without the Bedroom

You can fit a loft just about anywhere. If you have vertical space, you can free up a bedroom for another use.

Don’t stop having fun with your home. You can always ditch conventional ways of doing things to meet your needs, so don’t be afraid to experiment. To find extra functional home ideas, turn to Alair Homes Aurora.