Storage and Space Saving Ideas for Boats

Congratulations! You finally got the houseboat you've been dreaming of. Building a houseboat is indeed challenging, but by now you should know that the challenge doesn't end there. We all know that storage space on a boat is limited, and keeping your boat spacious is a task one should regularly do.

house boat storage
house boat storage

Living on a houseboat doesn't mean you are only allowed to keep essential items in your boat. After all, giving up belongings and other useful items can be such a waste. Sometimes, you just have to be creative and resourceful. To be able to save more space, we provide you with some storage and space saving ideas for boats!

Mount Cabinets and Racks on the Wall

Just like in a normal flat or apartment, mounting cabinets and racks on the wall can be a good trick for saving space. You can mount a rack for your cups, spices, towels, etc. in your kitchen to free up counter space. You can also do the same inside your bedroom by mounting cabinets on walls to maximize space.

wall rack for storage space
wall rack for storage space

Make Use of Folding Chairs and Tables

Given the limited space inside a houseboat, using the typical chairs and tables can make the area feel overcrowded. By using folding chairs and tables, you can make the area spacious and available for other purposes. For instance, you can use the cockpit as a dining area with the folding chairs and tables. You can also make it into a functional space by folding and putting them on another location. 

folding chairs
folding chairs

Hang Your Items

Saving space inside a boat involves a lot of hanging on walls. You can utilize the walls for storage by adding a hook. You can hang everyday items such as bags, keys, clothes, or hats to allow for easy access. Other items that you may want to hang are dry towels, and essential items such as flashlights, and other decorations.

Utilize Suction Cups & Velcro

If you don’t want to drill a hole for the hooks, you can use modern suction cups for your hooks. These modern suction cups can now be used for just about everything. If the surface isn’t smooth enough for a suction cup, you can try using a Velcro. Velcro comes in different sizes and strength. Aside from hanging items, you can also use them in keeping small items from sliding around or securing delicate items or other decor items in place.

Hang Your Organizers

If you want to hang more items and a hook or a suction cup is not enough, consider hanging your organizers. Storage items such as bins and canvas baskets can be hung on the wall to save space. You can use them for keeping clothes or laundries, storing your kids’ toys, or simply for storing your possessions.

Utilize overhead nets or bags

You can add and install overhead storage inside your boat. Overhead bags can allow you to maximize the space in your boat by making use of available spaces above you. Overhead nets or bags are also useful in storing essential items such as life jackets and safety equipment. These bags are perfect storage for such items as it allows you to access them in just a pull of a zipper, especially in emergencies.

Use Vacuum Bags as Storage

Chances are, you have many items that you don’t use regularly or you only use in a specific season. Normally people rent storage units to store these items, but if you want them to be within reach inside your boat, you can use vacuum bags. Seasonal clothes, items, or beddings can be compressed inside a vacuum bag to allow you to save space. Vacuum bags are also extremely versatile. These bags seal items in a gravy-duty air-tight and waterproof space, so you can also use them to store essential items such as emergency medical kit, food, and even your day's catch. Vacuum bags are essential as air and water are literally everywhere when you’re living in a boat.

Storage Units

Going back to my earlier point, you can only store so much inside a houseboat. As such, many rent a storage unit in Portsmouth as it is the closest to the lakes where their houseboats are. With a storage unit, you can easily declutter your houseboat. You can send to storage items that you deem non-essential for life on a boat, without having to throw them away. Additionally, this can be good for when you’re sailing. You don’t exactly want to overload your boat when you’re on the water.

Design Your Bedroom

We all have our ideal bedrooms and most of the time, it means a wide room decorated with a lot of furniture --- chairs, desks, bedside table, etc. Unfortunately, we can’t do the same for houseboats given the limited amount of space. This doesn’t mean that you can’t achieve a beautiful and relaxing bedroom though.

bedroom with shelving
bedroom with shelving

To allow for more space in your room, you can opt to use a loft bed. To set a warm mood in your room, you can play around the lights, colours, and textures. Since the headroom is most probably limited, pointing the lights upward and outward is more ideal. You can also save space and add more dimensions inside the room by hanging some items such as a basket from the ceiling or mounting other items such as a wall clock.

Use Collapsible Containers

Collapsible containers are handy tools for storing your essential belongings and other luxury items. There are now many space-saving silicone tools from the market. Silicone tools such as buckets and colanders are useful for storing bulky kitchen items such as cups, bowls, washtubs, etc. These collapsible containers also come in handy as they are durable and easy to clean.

Hide Cords and Wires

The last thing you want to see in such a small space is a tangle of cords clogging up a large area in your boat. As it is almost impossible to live without gadgets these days, dedicating a specific area as a charging station can help save space and solve the problem of tangling cords. You can install the charging station and anchor the wires on the wall. By securing the cords on the wall, you can effectively hide them and make your area appear more clutter-free.

Be Creative

These tips and tricks are just guides, and the best way to save space may still depend on the orientation and setup of your boat. Living on a boat is an adventure. Don’t limit yourself and keep experimenting. If you don’t need an item, you can give, sell, throw, donate, or keep them in another storage unit. If you really want to keep an item, then consider the tips we gave you in saving space.

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