Apartment Advice

Best Furniture for a Small Apartment (Top 5 Pieces)

Decades ago, a housing boom in the market drove everyone to buy two-story homes with white picket fences.

Today, the tide has turned. Individuals and small families are seeing big benefits from small apartments.

The trend toward apartment living has impacted furniture manufacturers. Major brands have micro-sized their top-selling items to reach a wider market.

Now, you can get high-quality furnishings that are proportionate to your room, no matter how small it is.

One trick is to buy double-duty furniture. Dual-purpose pieces serve several functions while taking up the same amount of floor space. This is very helpful when your square footage is limited.

Knowing how to say no to unnecessary things is another important skill you should learn (and fast). Whether you’re furnishing the living room, bedroom, or kitchen, these two skills are the key to smart decorating.

And don’t think that you have to sacrifice style for function. Even if you have a small home, it can still be chic and cozy.

Grab these five pieces to make the most of your space!

1. Extendable Coffee Table

Since the living room is also the gathering room for family and visitors, most of it will be taken up with seating. In a small living room, you might not think you have space for anything but couches.

But, an extendable coffee table is valuable, especially in small rooms. These tables often feature hidden storage cubbies inside. There, you can store DVDs, video games, or even extra blankets when guests stay over.

Some coffee tables even have shelving underneath, which is the perfect place to organize your books.

They come in multiple shapes and sizes, including round, to fit just about any space.

A table that has hidden storage and expands when needed encourages family time. You and your loved ones can relax together for a meal or play games on the tabletop.

And when it’s not in use, it can hide your clutter!

For more tips, check out this article: 10-Step Checklist to Organize a Happy Home

2. Tuck-Away Dining Set

If you don’t use your dining table multiple times every day, invest in one that can be tucked away out of sight.

Tables on wheels have the ability to fold down, and you can even find some that have storage space for the chairs under the table.

This innovative furniture option is especially helpful in tiny apartments with kitchen/dining room combos. After all, a full-sized dining table might take up your entire home!

Also see: Our favorite coffee tables for a small living room

3. Storage Ottoman

Ottomans aren’t usually considered a home furniture staple, but they should be. When it comes to saving space, it doesn’t get much better than these little accouterments!

Like the extendable coffee table, ottomans come in multiple shapes, sizes, and styles. The Superman of home furniture, storage ottomans can be used as chairs, side tables, nightstands, and storage space.

(You can even use them as your coffee table if you’re really tight on space.)

Don’t let the nickname fool you. Yes, ottomans can be “footstools,” but that’s not all they are.

A stylish ottoman will double as extra seating when guests arrive. And if they show up unexpectedly, there’s a little nook inside for stashing your clutter away!

Related: How to Float a Sofa Plus Other Apartment Decor Tips

4. Floating Desk

A new trend in home offices is floating furniture. Drop-down shelves and tabletops are enormous space savers.

Every studio apartment should have a floating desk. But, even those who live in small one or two-bedrooms would benefit from having one.

They’re lightweight and easy to affix to the wall. If you work from your home office, even occasionally, this type of desk will come in handy.

They’re great for kids’ homework areas, arts and crafts sessions, and office work. The best part is you can find floating desks that are as simple or as complex as you need them to be.

Related: The Pros and Cons of Renting a Furnished Apartment 

5. Apartment-Sized Futon or Daybed

When family and friends come to visit, it’s nice to be able to offer them a place to stay.

But unfortunately, you don’t always get the option of a spare bedroom when you’re in an apartment. With a futon, however, you’ve got a comfy couch and a spare bed in one.

If you don’t want a futon, daybeds are another option. Before you buy, it’s important to understand the slight difference between the two:

A futon is basically a sofa that can turn into a bed with a few adjustments.

A daybed looks like a couch or loveseat but has a mattress hidden underneath. That’s why they’re often referred to as sleeper sofas or pull out sofa.

As a bonus, futons and daybeds take up less space than the typical couch. Many of them come with hidden drawers for extra storage, too!

Either choice is good for an apartment with limited square footage.

BONUS: Platform Bed

Instead of skimping on size, go ahead and splurge on a queen or king bed if you want one. Just make sure the bed you choose is platform-style so you have extra storage underneath.

Platform beds lift off of the floor, and many have open areas for shelf and drawer space. Even if you don’t find one with a built-in storage unit, the open space under the bed gives you plenty of room for totes and boxes.

The once-popular Murphy bed has had a popularity spike alongside the apartment trend. Efficiencies and studio dwellers love the convenience of pulling down their large, comfy bed at night. Then, they can hide it out of sight during the day.

Whatever your preference is, a bed with storage is a must-have furniture item.

Tip: Check out the collection of bookcase Murphy beds in the Wayfair catalog. They look like a traditional bookshelf but have a secret bed frame that you can pull down for sleeping!


If you live in an apartment, you’ve made a smart move. But, furnishing small rooms isn’t always as easy as it sounds.

Luckily, you can have a stylish and comfortable home, even if you live in a small place. You just have to be strategic about decorating.

Add these crucial furnishings to your list before you stock your home with anything else, and you’ll see how big of an impact they make!

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