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The Best Gear for Small Apartments

Updated Dec 10, 2022
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Small homes are fragile ecosystems. Throw in some clutter, and a small space becomes chaotic, cramped, and generally unpleasant. But when everything’s in harmony and organized, even the tiniest space can feel expansive and refreshingly minimalist. Drawing on hundreds of hours of research, testing, and our own lived experiences, we’ve put together a list of essentials to help you make the most of every inch of your small space.

Schoolhouse Mollie Hook, a compact, multitasking hook

Schoolhouse Mollie Hook

A compact, multitasking hook
The Mollie Hook’s small frame fits as much gear as racks two or three times the size, and this hook can squeeze functionality out of spots that would otherwise go unused.
We recommend
Liberty Flared Tri-Hook Rack (129848), a coat rack with a classic design

Liberty Flared Tri-Hook Rack (129848)

A coat rack with a classic design
This rack can be mounted on a wall or behind a door, and it’s one of only a couple we found with tri-hooks, which maximize storage space and can reduce wear and tear on clothing and gear.
Another good choice
KES Solid Metal Swivel Hook, a space saver

KES Solid Metal Swivel Hook

A space saver
The solid yet compact three-hook KES is available in several finishes and is easy to install, and it comes with mounting hardware for wood or drywall.
We recommend
Seville Classics 3-Tier Resin Slat Utility Shoe Rack, the best shoe rack

Seville Classics 3-Tier Resin Slat Utility Shoe Rack

The best shoe rack
This rack succeeds where most fail: It’s wobble-free and assembles in minutes. It holds more shoes, of a wider variety, than many freestanding racks we tested, and it seems like it will last a long time.
We recommend
Delta Cycle Michelangelo Two-Bike Gravity Stand, our favorite indoor bike storage rack

Delta Cycle Michelangelo Two-Bike Gravity Stand

Our favorite indoor bike storage rack
Simple to set up and take down, this graceful yet sturdy two-bike stand can easily be adjusted to fit any type of bike.
We recommend
Seville Classics Foldable Storage Bench Ottoman, best collapsible storage bench

Seville Classics Foldable Storage Bench Ottoman

Best collapsible storage bench
This foldable bench assembles in seconds and offers ample interior storage for a fraction of the price of any other storage bench we considered.
We recommend
Sonos One, music for your whole home

Sonos One

Music for your whole home
The Sonos One sounds great on its own and is an affordable entry point to the Sonos system. Plus it may be the best-sounding voice-activated speaker around.
We recommend
BenQ HT2050A Movie Projector, the best projector under $1,000

BenQ HT2050A Movie Projector

The best projector under $1,000
The BenQ HT2050A has the best contrast ratio in its class and more realistic color than the competition, and it’s brighter than some projectors that cost a lot more.
We recommend
SoundAsleep Dream Series Air Mattress (twin), the best air mattress

SoundAsleep Dream Series Air Mattress (twin)

The best air mattress
This air mattress is supportive and tall, and there’s excellent customer support if anything goes wrong.
We recommend
BenchMade Modern Skinny Fat Sofa, the best online sofa

BenchMade Modern Skinny Fat Sofa

The best online sofa
BenchMade Modern makes the highest-quality sofas we tried and puts customization within reach of the average person. It can quickly manufacture sofas to a customer’s size and fabric specifications, typically within a month.
We recommend
Seville Classics Expandable Kitchen Counter and Cabinet Shelf, a great expandable shelf riser

Seville Classics Expandable Kitchen Counter and Cabinet Shelf

A great expandable shelf riser
You can adjust this expandable shelf riser to fit the size of most cabinets and capitalize on vertical space.
We recommend
Wall Control Metal Pegboard, the best pegboard system

Wall Control Metal Pegboard

The best pegboard system
These sturdy metal pegboards are a great way to make use of unused wall space. They’re easy to install, and they securely hold pots, pans, and utensils.
We recommend
Chef’n DishGarden, the best space-saving dish rack

Chef’n DishGarden

The best space-saving dish rack
Counter space is at a premium in a small kitchen, and a small but mighty dish rack that holds a full load of dishes makes cleanup more efficient and less of a pain.
We recommend
The Original Dish Drying Mat, quick-drying mats

The Original Dish Drying Mat

Quick-drying mats
If you don’t have a sink that can accommodate a dish-draining tray, get two of these absorbent pads—and you can hang one to dry while you use the other.
We recommend
Simplehuman In-Cabinet Can, a space-saving garbage can

Simplehuman In-Cabinet Can

A space-saving garbage can
This small Simplehuman trash can sits securely on a cabinet door and frees up space in a snug kitchen.
We recommend
IKEA Bekväm Kitchen Cart, a portable kitchen island

IKEA Bekväm Kitchen Cart

A portable kitchen island
This rolling cart has two shelves that provide ample storage space, and its surface is wide enough to fit a large cutting board.
We recommend
Yamazaki Magnetic Kitchen Organization Rack, the best kitchen organizer

Yamazaki Magnetic Kitchen Organization Rack

The best kitchen organizer
This handy rack is one of the best we found for making the most out of underutilized fridge surface space. It holds a lot of different kinds of items, and its strong magnets don’t budge.
We recommend
Spectrum Duchess Over the Door 5-Hook Rack, space-saving and durable

Spectrum Duchess Over the Door 5-Hook Rack

Space-saving and durable
This durable and easy-to-use rack is ideal for holding coats, towels, and bathrobes, and it takes advantage of otherwise unused space on the back of the door.
We recommend
IKEA Malm, best storage bed


Best storage bed
This affordable bed was the only one we found with a spring-loaded platform that lifts up the mattress to provide lots of storage inside when you don’t have enough clearance for pull-out drawers.
We recommend
Umbra Bijou Floating Shelf Cubby, best wall-mounted nightstand

Umbra Bijou Floating Shelf Cubby

Best wall-mounted nightstand
Chic and affordable, our favorite wall-mounted cubby will hold your bedside necessities without using any floor space.
We recommend
Room Dividers Now Tension Rod Room Divider Kit, the most versatile curtain room dividers

Room Dividers Now Tension Rod Room Divider Kit

The most versatile curtain room dividers
The spring-loaded tension rod that comes in this kit was easier to install than any other style we tried, and it comes with a luxe-looking, heavyweight curtain, available in 16 colors and patterns.
We recommend
Polder Wall-Mount 24-Inch Accordion Drying Rack, the best wall-mounted drying rack

Polder Wall-Mount 24-Inch Accordion Drying Rack

The best wall-mounted drying rack
This rack provides lots of drying space, mounts on the wall, and folds into itself for compact storage.
We recommend
Ipow Laundry Clips, the best laundry clips

Ipow Laundry Clips

The best laundry clips
These clips are essential for air drying delicates or hand-washed items, without having to set up a full drying rack.
We recommend
SpaceSaver Vacuum Storage Bags, best vacuum-sealed storage bags

SpaceSaver Vacuum Storage Bags

Best vacuum-sealed storage bags
These bags are quick to compress, and they reduced more volume than others we tested.
We recommend
Iris Weathertight Totes, clear, latched boxes

Iris Weathertight Totes

Clear, latched boxes
For everyday use inside the house, these tightly latching, clear containers are the most versatile we’ve found for storing clothes and other gear. They’re also available at multiple stores.
We recommend
Xtend + Climb SL2Hlight , slim, sleek, and sturdy

Xtend + Climb SL2Hlight

Slim, sleek, and sturdy
This well-designed step stool can safely hold up to 225 pounds. It looks great if you need to store it in plain sight, and it comes at a better price than other ladders.
We recommend
Dyson V7 Motorhead, the best cordless vacuum for most people

Dyson V7 Motorhead

The best cordless vacuum for most people
The V7 was one of the most powerful cordless vacuum cleaners we tested, and it can mount on a wall for storage.
We recommend
iRobot Roomba 614, a reliable, repairable bot

iRobot Roomba 614

A reliable, repairable bot
This efficient, self-charging robot vacuum with smart navigation has a repairable design that will help it last longer.
We recommend
iRobot Roomba 675, a reliable, repairable bot with wi-fi

iRobot Roomba 675

A reliable, repairable bot with Wi-Fi
This smart-home-compatible robot vacuum includes an invisible boundary marker, an app, and voice-assistant controls, plus a repairable design that will help it last longer.
We recommend
Anvil Homeowner’s Tool Set, the best compact tool set

Anvil Homeowner’s Tool Set

The best compact tool set
The Anvil packs all of the essentials in a small package at a great price, making it the best choice for common home repairs and upgrades.
We recommend
MegaPro 13-in-1 Ratcheting Driver 211R2C36RD, screwdriver upgrade

MegaPro 13-in-1 Ratcheting Driver 211R2C36RD

Screwdriver upgrade
This manual screwdriver combines smooth ratcheting action with excellent bit storage and a uniquely comfortable handle to make it the most well-rounded, capable tool of its kind.
We recommend
Bamboo Over the Toilet Space Saver, our pick

Bamboo Over the Toilet Space Saver

Our pick
Over-the-toilet racks get a bad rap, but this one should keep you happy with its attractive appearance, durable construction, and sliding doors that won’t invade your airspace.
We recommend
The Container Store Silver 2-Drawer Mesh Organizer, best under-sink drawers

The Container Store Silver 2-Drawer Mesh Organizer

Best under-sink drawers
This is the best-constructed organizer we’ve found. It doesn’t tip over (like other sets do), and you can screw the frame into the bottom of your vanity if you want added stability.
We recommend

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