Space-saving techniques ideal for any dorm room

August 22, 2012

Whether you love or hate your roommate, storage will be the key to a functional relationship. Dorm rooms are small and difficult enough to navigate without stacks of books on the floor, a pile of dirty clothes, a bicycle or two leaning against the wall or a mini fridge placed in an awkward spot because of a lack of three prong electrical outlets.

Keep your room organized with these simple tips for college dorms.

1. Organize laundry. Get a bag or foldable hamper to keep your dirty clothes in. Once it's full - and not a day later - take it to the washing machines and do a load. You can finish up a little homework while it's drying. When you get back to your dorm, put away your clothes in dresser drawers or hang them in the closet. While your chair may seem like the ideal spot to throw a few shirts, it will visually clutter the room.

2. Make your bed. Speaking of visual clutter, take the literal twenty seconds it requires to tuck your sheets in each morning. While you don't have to be perfect about it, a made bed is about as refreshing to a dorm room as a cool breeze.

3. Bring extra storage containers. While your school will usually supply you with some minimal shelving, a desk and (if you're lucky) a chest of drawers and closet, don't expect to have much other storage beyond the floor. Rather than resorting to that, be sure to bring plastic bins you can comfortably fit under your bed. These will be great for keeping your clean sheets or seasonal outerwear.

4. Plan around outlets. While your parents probably just needed electrical outlets for lamps, nowadays a dorm room needs to be designed around those few precious outlets- otherwise you'll have a garden of snaking cords underfoot. There's nothing worse than navigating these in the middle of the night with the lights out.

5. Hanging storage. If you have shoes, this is essential. Whether hooked to the back of your dorm door or hung from the closet rail, this is a fantastic space saver.

6. Drawer cubbies. Want to stay super organized? If you're the kind of person perennially late for class because you can't find your flash drive or highlighter, consider drawer cubbies for keeping everything exactly where you need it.

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