Does your kitchen have dead space? Unused, underutilized, and wasted space is a common occurrence in most American kitchens. After years of using the kitchen every day, many homeowners become numb to the waste of dead space. However, recapturing the unused spots in your own layout can make it feel larger, more practical, and more comfortable.

To help you weed out the dead space at home, here are five ways to resolve it. 

1. Identify It. The first step in solving a kitchen usage problem is to identify it. You may not even realize all the space that you aren't using simply because it's small or subtle. You're also accustomed to the layout, so things go unnoticed. For instance, how well do you—or, more likely, do you not—use the corner of two countertops? This may take some analysis, but it helps make your kitchen better permanently. 

2. Customize Storage. Even the smallest unused spot can be made useful by carefully customizing it into a storage option. That narrow space between the cabinets and an appliance? Add vertical slats for the storage of baking sheets or cutting boards. Leftover room at the end of a cabinet? Add a perpendicular endcap cabinet for spices. Room under the cabinets? Add toe-kick drawers for large pans. 

3. Give It a Purpose. Larger dead areas in any layout may be reclaimed only through intentional rethinking. If you really don't use the back of that countertop corner, why not add an appliance garage and turn it into a coffee station? An underused section of inconvenient counter space might become a charging station or a homework station. And a shelf above the range could become your go-to spice and oil station. 

4. Improve Storage. Perhaps you don't need fully customized storage but rather just more accessible, more modern storage. Corner cabinets might be made accessible with a lazy Susan. Replace inconvenient lower cabinets with pull-out shelves or deep drawers. Or take out that unused countertop entirely and add more general storage. 

5. Change the Layout. If there is a lot of dead space in your kitchen, identifying the root cause of the problem is key. Bad layouts often cause significant underutilization of multiple areas. In this case, the best way to recapture it all is to consider a more serious floor plan change. This is a bigger task, of course, but it can resolve many issues at once. 

Want help identifying or resolving the dead space you face at home? For more information on a kitchen remodel, contact a contractor in your area.