“Why does my new 4-room HDB flat seem smaller than my previous 4-room HDB flat?”

I bet that’s what you’re thinking if you have moved from an older-generation flat to one of the new HDB flats today.

The truth is, it is smaller. Infact, much smaller. Our HDB living spaces are indeed shrinking if you’re comparing with HDBs that are built before 1997. Here’s a size comparison.

HDB built before 1997

Type of HDB Size of HDB
4-Room HDB Flat Between 85 and 105 square metres
5-Room HDB Flat About 123 square metres

Source: Gov.sg

HDB built after 1997

Type of HDB Size of HDB
4-Room HDB Flat About 90 square metres
5-Room HDB Flat About 110 square metres

Source: Singapore Housing & Development Board

With our HDB homes getting smaller, most people would start to wonder how to fit everything into the new house. Here are some ideas on how you can make room for more storage space at home.


1: Make use of wall space

In a home of limited spaces, consider using the wall to create more storage space for your knick-knacks and books. Creative shelving ideas include ‘strip-like’ open bookcases that trail end-to-end across the ceiling area (see picture below). This can be a good storage option for book lovers with a bigger-than-usual collection. With these shelves, you’ll have a beautiful display PLUS! more walking space and floor area for other furniture too.

Wall Spaces






Need more storage? Here’s another tip: Tap into all that wall space around your bed. From the sides to even the top of your bed, all these areas can be better utilised with a custom shelving system.

Bed Space






2: Turn the floor area into another storage space

With limited space on ground, why not create more space ‘underground’? You can explore having floor storage in the form of a platform bed or even as your children’s play area. Floor storage is a good option if you’d like your home to achieve the minimalist look, as everything can now be kept out of sight, leaving your home to be free from all that clutter.

Floor storages would also remove the hassle (and pain) from storing at hard-to-reach areas such as high shelves and cabinets. No more straining your back just to keep something!

Source: Pinterest

3: Double up with a double-decker

Looking to fit more than one person in the bedroom? It might be hard to put 2 beds in a room, given our current HDB bedroom layout. In this case, a double-deck bed would be a more feasible solution and you can also free up more space for a cozy study table.

Better yet, opt for a combination look (see below). This multi-functional furniture not only saves space but also creates more storage space for the children with more drawers.


Double Deck
Source: Pinterest

Here’s another smart solution…

If you’re still looking for more space to store rarely-used family items, you can always keep them at Extra Space Asia self-storage where you can still access the items 24 hours, any time any day. If you are unsure on which storage facility is nearest to your home, simply input your postal code into this link and we’ll advise you on the location coupled with the best promotion for the storage size you are looking for. Say ‘yay’ to more space!

Making that ‘big move’ to a smaller HDB home? Well, downsizing doesn’t mean you have to downscale your life.

Here are 5 quick tips to optimise your shift to a cosy HDB home!


1. Space planning

Space Planning


If you have a certain design concept or furniture in mind but you find yourself asking, “I don’t know if I have the space,” then you should try out a space planning exercise first before anything.

Through this exercise, you’ll be able to get a better idea of your home’s total available area and also plan for a more functional home that suits your needs.

To get started, try a free space planning software online such as Smartdraw or Floorplanner to get an initial assessment of how much available space you have. Then, engage a professional ID or renovator to get an expert opinion.


2. Get organised with a timeline and budget list

Get Organised


With so many things happening at once, it can be challenging to get a full grasp of what is going on and how much are your total expenses. You don’t need any special tools to keep track. With something as simple as an Excel sheet or a Google Document, you can note down your budget and project timelines for renovation, moving dates and packing timeframe. This list will definitely help you avoid any lapses in schedule or overspending for a particular furniture. #lifehack

Moving can be a thoroughly enjoyable process since it marks a start of a new journey. Plan well and smart, and you’ll never be overwhelmed!


3. Make a list of what you’re bringing over to your new home



As you’ll be moving to a smaller space, bringing over everything can be a real challenge. Fret not, and start with a packing list. Create categories such as “Needs”, “Wants”, “Throw/ Donate” and “Box Number”. This trick will help you organise your items and make it clearer to sort them out.

When in doubt, just ask yourself these questions:

• “Do I need this item for my daily use or will I use it only once in a blue moon?”

• “Do I have space in my new home for this item?”

• “Do I have something like this which I just packed?”

• “Did I use this item in the past 6 months?”

• “Is this product energy saving and still working well?”

You don’t have to discard all your unwanted items. They can always be donated to people who need them more than you do. Visit Blessings in a Bag, The Salvation Army, MINDS to find out more.


4. Adding multifunctional furniture in your new home

Credit: Pinterest and IKEA

With the limited space available, consider furniture that comes with built-in storage or designed with multi-function features which not only fit your interior design theme but also your storage needs.

For a start, you can opt for bed frames with storage space. This allows you to have more space to store your bedsheets, books or even shoes. You can also purchase a mobile storage trolley that is convenient to push around anywhere in your house, such as the RÅSKOG trolley from IKEA. Its streamlined form is designed to fit between tight spaces – the perfect piece for all your knick-knacks and accessories.


5. Storing items in a reliable self-storage facility

Storage Units

Marymount Storage Units


Self-storage facilities can be the storage solution for small homes. It provides space for you to store things that you may not need on a daily basis. This will not only free up space at home, it can also safeguard your personal and family items in a secure location where you can access any time, any day.

Facilities also come with a wide range of storage sizes which you can choose from, depending on your needs. You even have the flexibility of increasing or decreasing your storage size. Storage periods start from as short as 14 days to as long as you need, all up to you!

Singapore, 17 September 2018 – Extra Space Asia has entered into a strategic venture with Keiyo Logistics to significantly expand the footprint of self-storage facilities in Japan. Extra Space Asia has committed to invest in self-storage facilities throughout Japan, and to work closely with Keiyo Logistics to become a dominant operator in Japan. Keiyo Logistics currently operates in excess of 75 facilities with over 6500 customers in Japan, primarily concentrated in Tokyo, under the brand “Private Box”. Facilities owned by Extra Space Asia will be managed by Keiyo Logistics under the brand “Private Box by Extra Space”. A leading pioneer of self-storage solutions in the Asia region, Extra Space Asia operates 33 facilities with over 12,000 customers across 5 countries (Singapore, Malaysia, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Korea) and is the largest self storage operator in the Asia region. The strategic venture between two of Asia’s leading self storage operators will allow them to grow market share in a rapidly expanding industry.


Picture Above-
Private Box Totsuka-Cho storage facility, owned by Extra Space Asia, located at Yokohama.

Although Japan’s self-storage revenues are amongst the top 5 in the world, the market saturation is still very low, primarily due to a lack of awareness and knowledge about the self storage industry and options for storage. As this awareness grows, and together with the growing affluence of the population, changing lifestyles and business practices, the self storage industry is expected to significantly expand over the next few years.

Extra Space Asia will be the first non-Japanese owned self storage company to operate in the Japanese market.

“We are excited to take this leap into Japan’s thriving self storage industry – an industry that is expected to expand at a faster rate in Japan than any other country in Asia. We look forward to working closely with our partner to bring a greater number of locations to the industry and provide easier access for our customers,” said Mr. Kenneth Worsdale, Chief Executive Officer of Extra Space Asia. “We will work closely with our partner to offer more storage options and options of superior quality”.

“The opportunity to work with Extra Space Asia, and further grow the industry in Japan, is very good news for the Private Box brand,” said Takahide Watanabe, Chief Operating Officer of Keiyo Logistics. “Our combined strengths will allow us to expand rapidly and become a leader of the industry in Japan”.


Picture Above-
Left: Mr Kenneth C. Worsdale, Chief Executive officer of Extra Space Asia. Right: Mr Takahide Watanabe, Chief Operating Officer of Keiyo Logistics. 

About Extra Space Asia

Extra Space Asia is Asia’s leading self-storage provider in the region, offering self-storage facilities and services to individuals, families, and businesses in densely populated cities with space constraints. Led by Chief Executive Officer Mr. Kenneth Worsdale, Extra Space Asia is a privately owned business, headquartered in Singapore and operating all over Asia.

For more information, visit Extra Space Asia at www.extraspaceasia.com.


Why, you asked? Let us start off with the two main BTO woes:

1) You are all set to move into your new BTO flat, but you are worried about the lack of space.

2) You are still in the midst of deciding whether you should save some money by living in a smaller flat, or live a bigger HDB flat and cut your expenses to make up for the difference in cost.

Believe it or not, we have one solution that solves both problems: Self-storage. You can now achieve your dream lifestyle in a more cost-effective manner!

Let us look at why you should make full use of self-storage spaces.

Small Space

Can you live comfortably in a smaller BTO flat?

In short, the answer is YES.

Truth is, homes in Singapore are getting smaller, and financing a bigger HDB flat is more challenging with the rising cost of living. Optimising your expenses seems to be the most practical option.

More important than spaces, it is actually how you manage it. For example, a minimalist 3-room BTO flat can look visually bigger than a heavily cluttered 5-room flat. That may be the case for most households as many of us have the habit of storing items we barely use.

Items are just there because ‘you might end up using them one day’. Think about that dusty piano spot, or that bicycle you use once every 3 months. Imagine the extra space you will have if you have somewhere else to store them!

Affordable alternative to bigger spaces

Self-storage spaces are technically your very own personal extended store room. Facilities are located around the island and have 24/7 accessibility, making it extremely convenient when you need to pick up your items. Unlike warehouse spaces, storage sizes at Extra Space are customised to suit your needs.

Many people are already on board. Storing household items remotely in a self-storage space is fast-becoming a trend amongst new BTO home owners, and even other households worldwide.

This table below shows roughly how much you can save by owning a 3-room BTO with a 450 sqft self-storage space vs owning a 5 room BTO house.

BTO Type BTO Total Cost BTO Size (sqft) BTO Cost p/sqft Self-storage Cost (per month) Self-storage Size (Sqft) Total Available Space (sqft) Total Cost Over 5 Years
3 Room BTO Flat $187,000 700 $267 $1,290 450 1150 $264,400
5 Room BTO Flat $362,000 1,184 $306 - - 1184 $362,000
Total Cost Savings Over 5 Years $97,600

Data obtained from the sources below:

  • Self-storage price is taken from Extra Space Asia Eunos Link in August 2018.
  • Based on a duration of 5 years.

As you can see, using a self-storage space can help you save up to $97,600 over a period of 5 years!

Extra Space Storage Facilities
Extra Space Kallang Way

Here is another fun fact: there are actually home owners who use Extra Space so that they can have a ‘private space’ without any disturbance. It becomes their home away from home.

So, when are you getting yours?