From Spotlight: Storage and Cleaning Tips to Take the Hassle Out of Life

Home Organization Ideas to Turn Unused Space into Storage Heaven

You can fit an entire closet where?

Using a kitchen pegboard for home organization
Image: @nolan_nest on Instagram

It's hard to enjoy your home when it feels cramped. But before you start thinking, "Time to move!" you may just need to make your house more clever — one with organization solutions built into surprising places.

Here are some home organization ideas that'll delight you:

#1 The Coolest of the Home Organization Ideas: A Wall-Turned-Jewelry Closet

A wall mirror opens to reveal jewelry storage system

You'll get out the door faster in the morning if you can grab the right necklace without spending 10 minutes untangling it from a knot of beads.

This is one of the best home organization ideas because it leverages the silver bullet for storage woes: between-the-studs shelves. For maximum jewelry-friendliness, pair pegs with shelves and hang a tidy little door.

Related: Tips for Creating Storage Between the Studs

#2 Reach New Organizing Heights with Library Ladders

Kitchen with built-in rafter shelving and library ladder
Image: Alec Hemer, photo/Tim Cuppett, designer

Conventional wisdom for organizing your home says to maximize storage space by putting shelves from floor to ceiling.

This is great if you're closer to seven feet tall than six, but the rest of us can't reach the stuff on the top shelves. Here's a clever storage idea: Install a library ladder.

Even better, there's no engineering required: You can find rolling ladder kits online.

#3 Try Pegboards

Pegboard in kitchen hanging pots, pans, and other items

Here's a smart home-organization idea: Turn a kitchen wall into storage space by covering it in pegboard and hanging pots, pans, and kitchen utensils. You get storage without losing square footage to cabinets or an island. 

Add a shelf at the top, and you've put a storage hack on top of a storage hack. Literally.

#4 Turn an Angled Wall into a Closet

Wall shelving converted to a closet to optimize storage
Image: Mindi Carwin at

If you've got an upper-story room with a slanted wall, maximize that cramped space by making a built-in closet. You can do this in an attic, bonus room, bedroom, or any place where the roof line creates dead space.

And it has a little secret: The center section of this closet is on wheels and pulls out to reveal even more storage behind it.

#5 Add a Shelf for Folding Clothes in the Laundry Room

Sunny laundry room with counter above washer and dryer
Image: Thalita at the Learner Observer

This one is so simple and smart, you'll wish you'd thought of it. Put a countertop over your front-loading washer and dryer to create a place to fold clothes.

Add under-counter shelves on one side for storing ever-ready laundry baskets. 

Be sure to mount the counter high enough above the washer and dryer so you can easily pull them out for maintenance and repairs.

#6 Turn a Stairway Into Pull-Out Storage

Drawers beneath stairs pull out to reveal bags and shoes
Image: Winnie Ho

Turn the dead space under the stairs into pull-out storage compartments. Cut into the drywall between the studs, and make bins, shelves, or even hanging storage to hold whatever items you need in the vicinity of the stairs. 

To make the best of the space, think through exactly what you'll store before customizing. Tote bags and coats? Pegs could do it. Shoes? Go for shelves.

#7 Take Garage Storage Up a Notch with Motorized Pulleys

A garage outfitted with a pulley storage system

Put the overhead space in your garage to work by installing a motorized pulley system that lets you store ice chests, camping gear, and other bulky items overhead. Forget those ceiling hooks and high garage shelves that are a pain to access; with this system, hit a button and your stuff is valeted right to you.

Related: Clever Storage Ideas for Small Houses

A headshot of Leanne Potts
Leanne Potts

Leanne Potts is an Atlanta-based journalist and serial home remodeler. She's tackled five fixer-uppers and is working on a sixth. She's written about everything from forest fires to dog-friendly decor and spent a decade leading the digital staff of HGTV.