5 Ways to Warm Up Your Downsized Home

Calling all empty nesters! If you’ve reached the “downsizing” phase of your life and are making plans to move to a smaller house, townhome, or condo, it’s essential to take steps to ensure your new space remains welcoming, warm, and very much you.

Think practical, yes – but the last thing you want is a cold and bare atmosphere lacking in family memories, meaningful art, comfortable furniture, and beautiful décor. Here are a six tips to help you stay on track as you shop for new furniture and work through your “keep” and “throw” piles.

1. Be surgical.

The larger your home, the less concerned you need to be about bringing in a new lamp, television, or large piece of furniture – there’s space to make it work. But in smaller homes, each side table, chair, and bookend carries more weight. So what does that mean for you? Be surgical with your decorating. Don’t just pick up a new piece of décor on a whim and force it to work; you have to be thoughtful. Whether through a new throw pillow or a long-loved family heirloom, find items that contribute to the warmth of your space. Each piece can make a huge difference one way or another.

2. Go round.

Working with round edges is a great way to save space. Whether through a welcoming round area rug in the entryway or a lightweight round wood coffee table in the living room, going round will keep your rooms open and free.

3. Keep it lively.

One of the best ways to ensure your new house is homey is to invest in all manner of living things! From fresh-grown herbs in the kitchen to potted house plants in the dining room to a small urban garden on the balcony, inundate your space with the vibrant colors and textures of living plants. If your giving up a large yard or garden, it might take some getting used to – but there are tons of creative ideas to keep your thumbs green after downsizing.

4. Find space for some art.

A smaller space can really make artwork pop. As you sort through which art pieces to bring into this new phase of your life, be sure to pick ones that are ideal for displaying front and center. If you don’t have any artwork (or you already purged it all to your “throw” pile), there are many ways to fill your walls with warm paintings and photos without breaking the bank. Check out Ikea for some affordable, ready-to-hang options, or explore Etsy’s art section for unique handcrafted masterpieces.

5. Get physical.

Going digital with books, movies, photos, and music is one of the best ways to save on precious space in your new home. But these physical collections of literature, art, and memories go a long way toward keeping your home homey. Don’t take an all-or-nothing approach to downsizing. Instead, focus on keeping small collections of your favorites that you’d either revisit in the future or loan to friends. Of all the items in your home to keep around for warmth, these are the winners.

This stage of your life is about simplicity and practicality, but it’s also about enjoying life. With a bit of thought and intention, you can create an efficient, yet homey and warm atmosphere for you, your family, and friends. Happy downsizing!

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