Whether you’ve chosen an affordable studio, a one-bedroom apartment or a spacious three-bedroom abode, chances are you wouldn’t turn down extra closet space. No matter how large your closets or how many of them you have, there just never seems to be enough room for all your clothes, trinkets and general stuff.

But you can maximize the closet space you do have. The right apartment closet organization and storage tools, plus a few small apartment storage hacks, can help make each closet feel twice as big.

How To Maximize Closet Space

Start with a purge

woman examining clothes

What takes up space in your closet but doesn’t truly need to be there? Be ruthless. Old high school sports jerseys, ill-fitting clothes and broken shoes don’t deserve closet space. Truly sentimental items can be stored away (see “Store seasonal items outside of the closet”). Otherwise, everything else should be divided into throw-away or donate piles. (Only donate items still in good condition.) Clear out any hangers or boxes that went with these items, as well.

Store seasonal items outside of the closet

under bed storage

Be intentional with your closet and only keep clothes for the current season hanging in there. Remove off-season clothing or sentimental items and store them in protective, clear, well-labeled bins under the bed or on the top shelves (see “Maximize vertical space”).

Maximize vertical space

woman reaching high in closet

Make your closet feel bigger by taking advantage of hard-to-reach, unused space between the top shelf or hanging rod and ceiling. Use this space to store boxes of items you only use occasionally or seasonally. Make sure to use clear boxes so you can see what’s inside, and label the outside for quick reference.

Use the right hangers

gingham hangers

Switching out bulky, mismatched hangers for thinner velvet options will not only maximize closet space but will also help your closet look neater and more uniform. The velvet grips your clothes better, eliminating shirts and dresses that pile up on the floor.

Get organizers

woman in closet

Use baskets or bins to optimize your apartment closet organization by collecting and storing small items like belts, scarves and hats in bedroom closets, or extra towels and toiletries in the linen closet. Add hanging organizer shelves that attach to your closet rod with hooks or Velcro to provide extra storage in your small closet and keep sweaters or extra linens nice and neat.

Add an extra rod

extra hanger rod

Making your small closet bigger is as easy as hanging another closet rod. To avoid putting holes in the walls, try adjustable closet rod extenders that hook onto your existing rod. 

Utilize the door

shoe door organizer

A simple shoe organizer hanging on the inside of your closet door can provide easy access to shoes and more. Use these little cubbies to hold accessories, toiletries, makeup, tools or small linens like hand towels or pillowcases.

Make the most of your shelves

bedlinens in closet

Keep bags and bulky clothing items like hoodies from toppling over with neat and functional shelf dividers. You can also repurpose office supplies like magazine file holders to help wrangle swimsuits, socks, hats and other small accessories.

Add storage under hanging clothes

shoe rack

One of the best small apartment storage hacks involves actually adding more to your closet. Place a low dresser or shoe rack on the floor of your closet. This can be a great place for those bins we mentioned that store off-season clothes or favorite knickknacks. 

Get a rolling cart

roller craft cart

A small rolling bar cart or craft cart can hold items that go in and out of your closet a lot and is a great addition to your apartment closet organization. And because it’s on wheels, it can easily move when you need to access deeper or higher parts of your closet.

Move everyday items out of your closet

shoes in hall stool

If you have some space near your front door, consider putting stacking shoe racks or a coat rack there. This frees up more space in the closet and allows easy access to items you use a lot, like your favorite pair of shoes or a hoodie.

Edit yourself

woman looking at donation box

Speaking of closet floors, all too often they become a dumping ground for all sorts of random objects. At least once a year, but preferably once a season, go through your closet to find any clutter that’s piled up, re-purge and put everything that’s left is in its place.

Send Cramped Closets Packing with Southern Management

At Southern Management, we know that storage space in an apartment is incredibly valuable. We understand that nice, large closets can be a must-have apartment amenity. For this reason, many of our communities and floor plans feature walk-in closets and some even offer additional storage.

If you know how to maximize closet space but still feel cramped, check out Southern Management’s apartment communities in Maryland and Virginia. We have online virtual tours to walk you through every inch of the apartment, so you can plan exactly where you’ll store your entire wardrobe.

Ready to make a move that matters? Explore our communities today!