Guides How to maximise the existing space in a residential property

When it comes to property development, making sure you maximise space to its full potential will help you maximise your return on investment (ROI). Whether you are taking on a commercial-to-residential conversion, developing an HMO, or simply renovating a tired property, knowing how to make the most of the space you have is vital. 

Read how you can maximise your property development project with our handy tips on maximising your existing space. And, it all starts with your planning.

In the planning stage of your development, space can be used in more ways than one. All of which can be extremely beneficial to the overall layout of your project. Most properties are plagued with wasted space. These are areas such as unwanted walls or areas where pieces of equipment and appliances have caused them to become useless. However, with some careful and clever designs, you can regain these areas. 

Height and width determine the volume of your space. Simply moving these boundaries can change the course of the initial space, transforming these wasted corners into an open canvas. Whether your property is terraced, detached or semi-detached, all can be subjected to alteration. 

Think about whether your development has any scope to increase its height. By applying for extensions, a single or double-story extension or a roof extension, for example, your plans can really start to exceed the expectations of the original property. These extensions will easily lead to bigger spaces and, perhaps, additional rooms to a property; however, they also allow the possibility for residential homes to become HMOs. 

If your plans look to increase the original footprint of the property, it is critical you research the rules and regulations. Depending on where your property is located, there can be variations in what councils will and will not permit. 

Not all properties lend themselves to extensions. How can you maximise space in properties such as apartments or listed properties where planning permission can be difficult to obtain? These properties may seem more challenging when it comes to maximising space, but it is still possible!

In these instances, your planning is limited to modifying the interior layout. Even though the overall volume of the property remains the same, it is possible to make the space feel bigger by reworking the original layout. 

Some older properties struggle to lend themselves to our modern, open-plan living. Kitchens and dining rooms very separate, and front and back living rooms, many prospective buyers and tenants are looking for light and open setups. When planning your development, look to open up kitchens into family rooms, allowing young families to incorporate the same space for different uses. A top tip is to embody your prospective audience and focus on providing a space that will lend to their needs.

Another effective way of maximising space is to replace any fixed pieces of furniture with adaptable, bespoke designs. Not only will these feel more luxurious, but you can use them to your advantage. For example, choosing furniture that fits into previously wasted space, or designing pieces that fold and flex with your property, will help create the allusion of a larger room.

A similar effect can be created with colour. How you use colour within a property can have an incredible impact on the illusion of space. Colours are known to enhance a property. The way colours and textures are used on ceilings, walls, and floors will come together and influence the size of the room. Darker tones tend to evoke a cosier, closer feel, with lighter and brighter colours helping to push the walls seemingly further apart.

The same effect can be achieved through minimalism. One way to maximise space is to scale everything back as prospective buyers or tenants will be able to appreciate the practicality of the open space. For example, mirrors can be utilised to accentuate the amount of ambient light present, helping to increase the size of a room further. Placing mirrors where they can reflect outside light from a window will emphasise this technique. This is even more relevant when addressing smaller areas such as bathrooms and bedrooms.

If you are struggling to meet the funds needed to purchase or complete your property project, we would like to hear from you. Not only can the John Howard Joint Venture Fund provide your missing capital, but you can gain from my and my team’s expertise and advice in the planning of your development. So apply today for the chance of becoming my joint venture partner.