Ways to Divide Space in a Small House

The coronavirus accelerated a massive shift in how we work. Sure, there were already people working from home and in coffee shops, but not at the scale they are now. Entire companies changed from in-office work to fully remote teams.

Now, people are spending more time at home and, as a result, need to re-think how they use their space. Finding creative ways to divide space in a small house will make it feel bigger and keep you more organized. How you position your furniture and use the right dividers will make all the difference.

You don’t always need an expensive divider or a large renovation to divide the pace, though both of those things do a fantastic job. Sometimes, you can effectively divide space with a bookshelf, clothing rack, or a buffet table.

Here are some ways you can divide space in a small house to get work done better, entertain guests, or do whatever else you need.

single couch in the living room with a vertical divider at the back

Buying Dividers

Plenty of furniture stores sell dividers that come in different materials like bamboo, oak, or lightweight plywood. You can find dividers with designs on them or in solid colors if that’s what you prefer. You can hang art on your dividers, put colorful wallpaper on them, or use dividers to hang whiteboards or corkboard that you need for work.

In a small apartment, dividers do a great job when you need to separate your bedroom and home office space in the same room. They can mark where the kitchen ends and where the dining room begins if you live in a studio or somewhere with an open floor plan.

sectional couch in a small house

Sectional Couches 

Sectionals do a terrific job of breaking up open floor plans. You can set up a desk for work behind your couch that extends away from the wall, and people visiting will know that it’s a dedicated space.

What’s more, you’ll feel the difference as you move from your couch to your desk. Often, just a small change of scenery like that is enough to get you into work mode or help take your mind off your work when it’s time to relax.

clothes rack with a bunch of jackets

A Clothes Rack

A stylish clothing rack can double as a room divider and extra closet space if you live in a small apartment. Position it between your bed and the rest of your room to break up the area. Then, hang your clothes on the rack to give yourself some extra privacy in the bedroom.

cute sofa beside a plant rack as a divider

Using Plants to Divide Space

If you don’t have any plants yet, you can use them to break up a small house and spruce things up. Plants are a wonderful addition to any home, and as long as you are up for the maintenance, they can last for years and keep your area feeling welcoming and relaxed. In addition, homes with plants in them usually feel bigger.

tied up cute curtain


What if you want the option to divide the space but don’t love permanent barriers? In small homes, sometimes people want to take advantage of open floor plans, and other times they want some privacy.

Curtains come in handy when you need to go back and forth. You can hang a curtain rod above a doorway or across the ceiling and buy some tasteful curtains that add to the style of your home.

All you have to do is pull them shut when you need to divide the space and open them up when you want to open up the house.

bookshelves used a room divider at home with a plant beside a window


Bookshelves are another great divider choice because you can buy some of them without solid backs. In addition, the ability to see through a bookshelf can make your small house feel bigger as opposed to a solid bookshelf that really compartmentalizes a room.

If you can, you may also want to double-up uses for your bookshelf by purchasing one that has a section for a desk already built in. Use some of the shelves to hold your jewelry box, small plans, and trinkets you pick up when you travel to make things feel more inviting.

barn door installed in a new house

Install a Barn Door

Barn doors are awesome because they slide from side to side instead of swinging open. When you’re short on space, a barn door can divide a bedroom and sitting area, the kitchen from the dining room, and other common areas.

Installing a barn door is a lot more challenging than some of the other divider options on this list, so you may need to enlist the help of a contractor or a couple of friends who know what they’re doing.

Choose a door made of wood that adds to your home’s value, and you’ll love the way it looks and breaks up your home into more spaces.

Buy Some Folding Screens on Wheels

People want the ability to divide spaces but not to have permanent features that make their small home feel even smaller. With folding screens on wheels, you can move dividers around your house depending on when you need to section off an area in your home.

These are the perfect solution for when you and your friend or partner are both working at home. For example, if one of your needs to jump on a video call, you can slide the folding screens in place to make it seem like you’re working in your dedicated home office.

gray couch with a storage underneath

Take Advantage of Vertical Space

When we think about dividing small spaces, we typically go straight to how to break up floorplans. However, people can also get a lot of use out of vertical spaces. You can, for example, build storage into areas under your bed or buy furniture with built-in storage under cushions to help you keep things more organized.

Building cabinets all the way up to the ceiling is an effective way to make kitchen organization easier in small apartments in cities and other smaller homes.

Finding the right way to divide the space can be challenging, but there are some great ways to make your home feel bigger and a section of places to work, sleep, or entertain.

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