Apartments and strata complexes have many advantages, letting people have a sense of community, shared facilities, convenience of location. One of the very few downsides is the lack of space. This is usually not an issue for most people; if they really preferred space they could have bought a cheap house in a distant suburb. The advantages of strata usually outweigh this. At the same time, people rarely want their living space to feel smaller.
There is a myth that plain white walls make a space look bigger. This doesn’t really work, as it is contrast that gives the sense of space, not uniformity. Many furniture catalogues display their bold furniture on a plain background, often to great effect. But it is the contrast between the bold colours and the plain background that makes these images so attractive. If you have this contrast in the colour scheme of your apartment, either in the walls themselves of between plain walls and bold furniture, you will have a great sense of space.
It is the contrast between negative space and colour that works to give a sense of openness; having both empty space and decoration. Using one wall of a room to house all the decorations and leaving the others bare is one way to achieve this. This decoration can be several hangings that work together, or a large glass face display cabinet. Cabinets can be filled with anything from fine china and collectables to model ships and hobbies, and because they are open they still give the impression that the space is part of the room.
Furniture helps create a sense of openness if the number of items is kept to a minimum, if they are smaller in scale, and if they keep a low profile. The low profile especially makes the room feel like there is a lot of space, even if the floor is mostly covered.
Colour schemes are important as they make a room feel clean, even when it is not. This is because we confuse tidiness with the feeling we get from bright colours and daylight. Drab colours will make a room seem small, rundown and old, even as it may be spotlessly clean. Bright colours look like a glossy magazine, even with minimal upkeep.
A clean apartment will always seem bigger. Clutter has several bad psychological effects upon us, including lack of motivation and the tendency to move less; but just the fact that is makes the space fell smaller is reason enough to keep things tidy. The hygiene side is also important, which is where a professional cleaner comes in. Just having the floors and bathroom kept in good order is reason enough to enjoy life a little more.