Sunday, November 11, 2012

Renovation: HDB Household Shelters

Nobody wants it and everybody hates it but like it or not, all HDB BTO flats will come with a household shelter. Only question is what can you do with it now that you are stuck with this so called wasted space as it cannot be hacked away?

Depending on where the location of the shelter is, it can actually serve some useful purpose. Below list out all the possible use of the space.

Location - near main door entrance.

You can turn the household shelter into a closet where you store all the footwear,  jackets, bags, umbrellas and all the things you often use when you step out of the house.

If you have kids, this can also be a good place to store the stroller(s) as well.

If your unit is small, then having a few spare fordable chairs will come in handy when you have a gathering. The chairs can be hung up nicely in the closet until there is a need for them.

Location - along the walkway to the rooms

Even though there is already a service yard, that area will most probably be wet making it not suitable to iron your clothes. So turning the household shelter into a central dry utility room would be practical especially if you have grown up kids who do their own ironing. With a central dry utility room, you do not have to bring the iron and ironing board in and out from room to room each time someone needs to use them or each room having their own iron and ironing board.

You can also store items like bedding, sheets, towels, pillow cases or even winter wears. Practically anything related to fabric. This saves you the precious space you have in your closet with the ever decreasing size of the rooms.

If you have babies, this will be a good place too to store stock of diapers and what not for those who like to buy in bulk.

Ikea's Gorm storage solution are cost effective for this purpose, as shown below.

Picture courtesy of

Location - kitchen

Obviously, the best use of this space is to turn it into a pantry for all those things that you do not actually need to store in the kitchen cabinet itself. This includes stocks of canned/boxed/bottled food, packs of rice, garlic, onions etc. It is a life saver especially if your kitchen is small where it is not possible to have a big kitchen cabinet. It also helps to keep those things away and not spoil the look of your nifty kitchen.

Again, Ikea Gorm is suitable for you to create yourself a pantry

To store or not to store?

At the end of it all, what matters is how you use the space. Keeping it clean, tidy and organised is what actually counts. Don't treat the space as a dumping ground to store stuff for dust to settle.

On a side note, how do you know if the things you keep are a necessity? When it has never been used for more than a year, it most likely never will. Having an annual spring cleaning, normally before a festive season is a good way to throw unused junk out of your storage space.

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