Renter-Friendly IKEA Finds That Are Perfect For Small Apartments

Nowadays, owning a home isn't as financially feasible as it once was. With spikes in mortgage rates, increasing property values, and an overall lack of affordable housing, many people instead rent their homes. According to data from Ruby Home, just over ⅓ of people in the United States are renters, especially younger individuals who haven't had much time to save up for a down payment on a home. 

Renting comes with some perks — a landlord on call for repairs, increased flexibility if you're planning to move, and the ability to live in prime areas for a lower cost than buying — but it also comes with some struggles. Landlords' top priorities are often ensuring that their property stays marketable and in good shape for the next renter, so there are rules in place that prevent you from making holes in the wall or renovating to fit your personal taste. Add in the fact that rental units, especially apartments, are often much smaller than a home in the suburbs, and you're left with quite the challenge when decorating and organizing your space. Luckily, however, IKEA understands this struggle and has plenty of items available that are perfect for renters looking to make the most of a limited floor plan.

Friheten Sleeper Sectional

When living in a small space, multipurpose items are your best friend. A comfortable sofa is essential, but why should it just be used for sitting? This Friheten Sleeper Sofa from IKEA converts into a bed for guests and includes hidden storage, making it a fantastic secret weapon for anyone who has to be mindful of their square footage. Unfortunately, some reviewers say it's a bit stiff and not the best quality, but it's still a solid, low-cost choice for a first apartment, especially if you plan to upgrade when you move.

The Friheten Sleeper Sofa is available at IKEA for $899.

Skubb Storage Case

Even if you have a large apartment with plenty of storage space, you're missing out if you're not utilizing the area under your bed. This oft-forgotten spot is perfect for storing items that you don't need to access every day, like winter jackets, holiday-specific décor, and summer swimsuits, and IKEA's Skubb Storages Cases offer an easy way to organize and tuck these items away. If you're working with a platform bed or have already filled this location, these storage cases are also great to stash in a closet to decrease the amount of visual clutter.

The Skubb Storage Case is available at IKEA for $9.99.

Rigga Clothes Rack

One of the first things you learn when apartment hunting, especially in a larger city, is that closet space is a luxury. However, if you found a place lacking in this department, don't worry — a clothing rack can help you expand your wardrobe space and bring more visual interest to your room. Use it to display your favorite garments, create a capsule wardrobe, or plan your outfits for the week. At its low price point, this simple metal option from IKEA likely costs less than the last item of clothing you bought.

The Rigga Clothes Rack is available at IKEA for $19.99.

Vesken Cart

Apartment bathrooms, kitchens, and laundry rooms are often full of awkward small spaces. They're too narrow to fit a regular piece of furniture, but you're still doing your best to take advantage of all the square footage you have. The solution? A tiny cart. Putting some shelving in this area can give you more storage space, but if you're dealing with something deeper than it is wide, that renders a large part of the shelf inaccessible. Add a couple of wheels, however, and you have a shelf you can easily pull out and return.

The Vesken Cart is available at IKEA for $9.99.

Bosnäs Ottoman with Storage

Consider a storage ottoman if you're not a fan of investing in a storage couch — or if you already have one and are looking for even more room. This little piece of furniture can act as a footstool, of course, but it can also function as extra seating in a pinch, do the job of a side table when topped with a tray, and hold just about anything your heart desires. It even has a washable cover, so you don't have to worry about spot-treating stains.

The Bosnäs Ottoman with Storage is available from IKEA for $27.99.

Pålycke Clip-on Basket

Many storage solutions that allow you to take advantage of vertical space require you to drill into the wall, but this clip-on basket is an exception. The design of the basket enables it to hook onto an existing shelf or tabletop, whether that be a kitchen cabinet, the edge of a desk, or the top of a side table. After hooking it on, you'll have access to a small but useful secondary basket under your furniture, perfect for storing items you frequently use or that have no other designated spot.

The Pålycke Clip-on Basket is available at IKEA for $8.99.

Uppdatera Pegboard Drawer Organizer

Taking full advantage of all the available drawer and cabinet space can be a challenge, especially if you haven't found an organizer that fits your needs. This option from IKEA allows you to customize your setup. Instead of the typical immobile walls, the organizer works like a pegboard. Use it to store dishes upright in a drawer one day, then switch up the layout as your requirements change. Thanks to the simple plastic design, it can also be used as a dish rack in a pinch.

The Uppdatera Pegboard Drawer Organizer is available from IKEA for $24.00.

Tisken Basket with Suction Cups

Baskets and organizers with suction cups are great items for organizing your bathroom, but they have plenty more uses, especially if you're a renter. Secure one to your mirror to hold makeup brushes, attach it to your kitchen backsplash to house your most-used spices, or even stick it to the side of a smooth piece of furniture to act as a catch-all for clutter that usually collects on a side table. The possibilities are endless, and none of them require you to damage your walls.

The Tisken Basket with Suction Cups is available at IKEA for $9.49.

Råskog Utility Cart

For good reason, the Råskog Utility Cart is a favorite among dorm dwellers and renters. The simple design is perfect for adding some additional storage space in the kitchen or bathroom, and it can even do the job of a budget bar cart if you're on the hunt for a drink station that isn't too bulky. What many people haven't caught on to, however, is that IKEA also sells the Högsma Cutting Board ($9.99), a bamboo piece that fits perfectly over the top of the cart to extend your counter space.

The Råskog Utility Cart is available from IKEA for $39.99.

Vattenkar Desktop Shelf

Storage solutions that maximize vertical space without relying on the walls are few and far between. However, IKEA has you covered with two options: the Pålycke Clip-on Basket that dips below the existing shelf and the Vattenkar Desktop Shelf that sits above it. This uniquely designed piece attaches like a vice to your tabletop and provides additional organizational space. Use it on a desk, as IKEA suggests, or clip it to a bathroom counter or side table. You can even alter the position of the shelves so it can sit flush with the wall.

The Vattenkar Desktop Shelf is available at IKEA for $19.99.

Rågrund Sink Shelf/Corner Shelf

Properly organizing the area under the sink can be difficult when you're dodging water pipes, whether exposed or hidden with a cabinet. Still, this shelf is specifically designed to fit in that unique space. Put two together under the sink to add some much-needed accessible storage, or place one alone in a previously unused corner of your room. If you need more shelves, you could even consider stacking them on top of each other to create one tall corner shelf.

The Rågrund Sink Shelf/Corner Shelf is available at IKEA for $39.99.

Ranarp Wall/Clamp Spotlight

There's nothing that will ruin the vibe of your perfectly-curated room faster than harsh lighting and apartment complexes are notorious for installing overhead lights that lean a lot more clinical than cozy. If you're looking for an option to replace these lights that doesn't require full-on rewiring and installation, consider going for a sconce with a clamp. This offering from IKEA can be clipped onto furniture or installed on the wall with screws if you have a landlord that isn't quite as strict, but neither choice involves installing complex wiring.

The Ranarp Wall/Clamp Spotlight is available at IKEA for $31.99.

Granvåg Mirror with Storage

A full-length mirror is a necessity for any fashionista, but floor mirrors tend to take up valuable space that could otherwise be used for storage. This option from IKEA, however, almost acts like a cabinet, boasting some bars hidden behind the mirrored surface where you can hang ties, belts, and scarves. Unfortunately, securing it to the wall is necessary as it wouldn't be nearly as functional as a floor mirror. Still, it's a good option if you're willing to accept a bit of minor damage or fill nail holes before moving out.

The Granvåg Mirror with Storage is available from IKEA for $109.99.

Norden Gateleg Table

A full-sized dining table is a luxury many people can't fit in their space, especially in apartments. However, having an area to eat your meals is still important, especially if you're living with family. Something like this Norden Gateleg Table provides the perfect middle ground: a full-sized surface that can seat a family when folded out and a tiny cabinet that can squeeze into a corner when the drop leaves are stowed. It even features some storage in the form of six drawers along the table's base.

The Norden Gateleg Table is available from IKEA for $349.99.

Brimnes Bed Frame with Storage

If you're in the market for a new bedframe, your best option for living in a small apartment is something with built-in storage like this Brimes Bed Frame. The design is simple and doesn't require the addition of a box spring, so it's easy to incorporate into your space — all you need to add is a mattress and your linens. This model includes four large drawers along the bottom that can store just about anything you like, from clothing to extra bedding.

The Brimnes Bed Frame with Storage is available from IKEA for $319.00 for a full.

Snurrad Lazy Susan

Lazy Susans are often under-appreciated in the organizational world. Still, their unique design allows you to take full advantage of your shelves, whether in your bathroom, refrigerator, or kitchen. This option is designed to fit in the fridge and give you better access to jars and bottles that would usually be forgotten in the back and left to expire without use. The fairly universal design is helpful in almost any room in the house, especially if you're working with deep or awkwardly shaped cabinets.

The Snurrad Lazy Susan is available from IKEA for $29.99.