Seven Dorm Organizing Tips for NYC Students

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Seven Dorm Organizing Tips for NYC Students

Heading to college is an exciting time. No matter where you go to college, it’s inevitable that your apartment or dorm will be a smaller space than you’re used to having. You’ll use every inch of storage space and probably share that space with at least one roommate. We’re located in NYC, so we’re pros at making small living spaces more comfortable. Here are seven dorm organizing tips to help your apartment be both functional and stylish this year.

Functional Furniture

While storage ottomans are an obvious choice, there are several other clever options for multi-use furniture. If your college dorm or apartment is unfurnished, you’ll have a lot of flexibility in how you fill your room.

A few ideas to consider:

  • Convertible coffee table: Coffee tables that convert to a dining room table, sometimes called “lift-top.” If you need a table, this one can serve a dual purpose and eliminate the need for multiple pieces of furniture.
  • Desk hutch: If it’s not already provided, adding extra storage space to the top of your desk will help your workspace stay organized. There are several affordable options for less than $100 on the market. And, when you’ve graduated, it should be easy to sell it to a current student.
  • Modular or Convertible Sofa: It’s inevitable that you’ll move many times throughout your college career, so invest in furniture that’s easy to transport. No one wants to haul a bulky couch or futon every year to a new place. If you’re purchasing a couch, try to get a modular sofa that’s easy to take apart. Especially if you live in NYC, you may not have easy access to a car or truck, and having smaller items makes the move so much easier.


Downsizing is an essential step before getting to college. When you’re sharing a small dorm or apartment with a roommate, you will have much less friction and arguments if you adopt minimalism. Plus, dorm organizing will be so much easier without a pile of things.

Before you step foot on campus and move in some boxes, it can be difficult to envision how everything will fit at your new apartment. When in doubt, Simplify Storage has your back. NYC students can store extra items with ease. The company comes directly to your dorm or apartment to pick up excess items, like seasonal clothes, hobby or sports gear, and even bulky items like an extra mini fridge. No matter your storage challenge, Simplify Storage is flexible and affordable. And when you’re ready to leave for the summer or study abroad, leave your unneeded items with us!


Bed Risers or Loft

Having a lofted bed is an essential piece of the college experience. The difference is like night and day when you have extra space under your bed. Work with your roommate ahead of time to discuss logistics on your room’s arrangement, like placing desks or futons under lofted beds. Getting dimensions of your room ahead of time will help you envision your real space. Check with your college on whether you can loft the beds, and if this equipment is provided with your room.

If you’re comfortable climbing the bed without a ladder, you can put the ladder between the bed and wall for a makeshift bookshelf. By wedging it behind the frame, you can use the ladder’s rungs for extra storage. It also allows your books to be easily accessible if you place your desk under your lofted bed.

Don’t forget to buy a pool noodle. If you’re going to loft your bed, you’ll hit your head on the metal rods under the frame. Buy a couple of pool noodles before they are out of stock for the season, and cut a slit along the length of the noodle. Then, you can fit it up on the metal bars and secure with zip ties to keep it secure. This will soften the blow if you stand up too quickly or misjudge the height.

Tension Rods

These handy little tools help create extra space in your closet or in tight spaces to give you extra hanging space. They can also section off parts of the room that you want to keep hidden. For rooms without a closet, try using a tension rod with a curtain to create a closet under your lofted bed. You can also add additional tension rods to make some hanging space. Be sure to buy ones that are heavy-duty to eliminate slipping.

A tension rod is also a great way to add curtains to your window without drilling holes. These can help add personality and privacy. Be sure to measure the window before buying these curtains and tension rods to ensure that everything will properly fit your space.

Touches of Personality

When you’re away from home, having small personal touches and design is a great way to acclimate to your new environment. But, limit your knick-knacks, which will take up valuable shelf and desk space. Be purposeful when choosing what items to bring to college, and avoid duplication. Allow yourself to bring one box of personal decor or items to control the clutter and aid in the dorm organizing process.

Use Wallspace

While you don’t want to add a ton of holes in your dorm walls, there are great options for storage that can utilize wall space. Command hooks are a lifesaver for adding additional space for purses, keys, backpacks, and even bath towels. The last thing you want is to be tripping over a bath caddy on your way to a microwave or your bed. Adding ample wall storage is key to making your dorm organizing process easier and give every item a home.

Think Vertically

While the square footage of your dorm will be small, adding vertical storage helps you maximize efficiency. Tall, skinny bookshelves are a great way to add extra storage without leaving a large footprint in your room. If you don’t have a bookshelf provided by your apartment or university, be sure to measure your room and find a shelf that takes up as much vertical space as possible.


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