10 Ways to Create Storage in a Small Rental Kitchen

updated Jun 9, 2019
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(Image credit: Devon Jarvis)

If you’re a renter with a small kitchen, all those storage hacks you see on Pinterest probably drive you up a wall. (A small wall, but still, a wall.) So many of the so-called brilliant storage ideas out there involve ripping something out, putting something in, or both — not exactly making them renter-friendly.

All of these ideas? They’re all totally temporary and sure to help you get your security deposit back at the end of your lease.

(Image credit: Anik Polo)

1. Use shelf risers.

They can basically double your storage space! And they’re not super expensive, so you can load up your cabinets. Use them to store extra plates, bowls, glasses, and more.

(Image credit: The Kitchn)

2. Flip a wine crate.

Turned on its side, a wine crate or other sturdy wooden box creates instant shelving. Put it on the end of a counter against a wall and you have a new, stylish cabinet.

See more: 5 Clever Ways to Use Wine Crates in the Kitchen

(Image credit: Pablo Enriquez)

3. Steal space from an adjoining room.

This New York City kitchen is more of an alcove than a real kitchen. But it works, thanks to bonus storage in the form of a small shelf in the neighboring entryway.

See more: Tamar’s Smart and Stylish Studio Apartment at Apartment Therapy

(Image credit: Devon Jarvis)

4. Roll out a utility cart.

A little wheeled utility cart can work wonders to give you a little more space. You can tuck it under a countertop or hide it inside a lesser-used closet when you need the floor space more than the stuff.

(Image credit: The Kitchn)

5. Hang a pegboard.

A pegboard creates about as much damage to your wall as hanging a picture. But unlike a picture, you can use a pegboard to create a whole array of storage for anything from utensils to pots and pans. Just be be prepared to spackle the holes before you move.

See more: Alison, Liz & Nicole’s Shared Space at Apartment Therapy

(Image credit: Celeste Noche)

6. Hang a curtain rod.

Even fewer holes! Use a curtain rod to hang your utensils (with S hooks or just hooked on) to keep them handy, and you’ll find yourself freeing up a drawer or two.

(Image credit: The Kitchn)

7. Use adhesive hooks.

Or go with this option, which creates even fewer (none!) holes. Use adhesive wall-mount hooks (like Command Hooks) to hang up potholders, scrubbers, and other tools that would otherwise take up space on the counter or in a drawer.

See more: 5 Tiny Projects to Make 1 Super Organized Kitchen

8. Screw hooks under shelves and cabinets.

Let’s be honest — your landlord is never going to notice that you put hooks under the cabinets! Use these to hang up mugs, utensils, and more. We won’t tell if you don’t!

See more: Haleigh’s Charming Parisian Kitchen

(Image credit: Lauren Kolyn)

9. Use the sides of your cabinets.

There are tons of smart storage ideas in this rental kitchen. (If you have the wall space, try pushing an island up against it, for example!) Our favorite idea here: Putting the sides of your cabinets to good use. It’s the perfect spot to put a magnetic knife block or hang some pots and tools.

(Image credit: Anna Spaller)

10. Use the tippy tops of cabinets.

It’s true: You can store stuff on the tops of your cabinets without making them look cluttered or messy. This stylish rental kitchen (it got a makeover for just $300!) is proof.

How do you make extra storage space in your rental kitchen?