Making a small space comfortable is a challenge more and more homeowners face.

Discovering new ways to increase the amount of functional space is a common challenge for home and condo owners. It’s often not enough to improve interior lighting, paint the walls a brighter colour or mount mirrors on the walls to make a room feel larger. It takes creativity and imagination to make a space comfortable. There are innovative and practical solutions available that can maximize the space in every room. Here are a few ideas that we love:

1. Kitchen Banquette

Create a focal point by installing a bench on the wall to serve as dining table seating. Include storage cabinets or shelving underneath the bench for storage. Add matching pillows or seat cushions to create eye catching accents and reduce or eliminate the number of bulky dining chairs.

2. Wall Bed

A comfortable bed provides rest and relaxation, but it does cover a lot of floor space. Beds that fold into the wall can provide more room during the day. Wall beds come in full, queen and king size and are often attached to a unit with drawers on either side, which can be used to store bedding and pillows. If a wall bed isn’t attractive, there are also beds with drawers built into the frame that can provide additional storage.

3. Wall-Mounted Utensil Storage

Pots and pans can be stacked on top of each other in drawers, but metal utensils such as cooking knives or ladles should be magnetically suspended on a corner wall in the kitchen. Install a bar for towels on the same wall and a wine glass rack for easy access. This displays all the basic cooking tools in one spot with no need to rummage through kitchen drawers. If all the pots and pans will not fit in drawers, they can also be suspended from a wire rack bolted to the ceiling with hooks looped through the pan or pot handles

4. Pull-Out Kitchen Pantry

A tiny kitchen can be difficult to navigate for the chef at heart or those looking to cook a healthy family meal. Any good chef will require ample storage space for pantry items such as cans, condiments and pasta. If there is not enough wall space to install shelves, then a pull-out pantry is a great way to ensure that everything remains organized. Their streamlined design fits right in with the cabinetry, fridge and drawers, keeping clutter out of sight.

5. Bookshelf Staircase

Small spaces are not usually designed for book lovers with hundreds of novels. Wall shelves or cabinets can provide a home for an extensive literary collection, but hanging mirrors or photos often get first priority on the walls. The space under a staircase is generally not a focal point in the room, which makes it a perfect spot for a recessed bookshelf.If you have renovation ideas on the brain but are wondering how to fit the upgrades into your budget, you may want to turn to your bank to help finance your dreams. TD offers a Home Equity Line of Credit, which allows you to access credit secured against your home’s equity. You can borrow up to 65 percent of your home’s equity and can choose from fixed and variable rate options. The interest rate is low because you are using your home as collateral and the variable rates are based on TD Prime Rate. Alternatively, you can take out a TD Personal Line of Credit, which allows you to borrow up to $50,000.Both lines of credit are conveniently accessible through your TD Access Card, cheques and EasyWeb online banking. You can apply for either option online, or call 1-866-222-3456 or book an appointment at your local branch.