Tight Quarters? 10 Smart Space-Saving Door Solutions

Are you struggling to find a space-saving interior or exterior door for your home? Whether you're building a tiny house or just trying to renovate a small or tricky room, don’t limit yourself to traditional doors and the standard sizes offered by your local building supply store. Think outside the box—or in this case, the door frame. Look at the area surrounding the door opening. Is there room for pocket doors that could slide into the wall? What about overhead? If there's space there, a horizontal retractable door could work. Or, if sound and insulation aren’t issues, accordion doors that fold back toward the frame may be the answer. Pivot doors that rotate around a central point are yet another option. Take a look at our list for more ideas!

  1. Pocket Doors

    Pocket Doors Spacing Saving

    In tight-quarters where room is limited for a door to open and close—think, tiny bathrooms—consider installing a pocket door. This old-house feature, which works by sliding into a hidden wall compartment, saves precious swing space giving you room to move about.


  2. Barn Doors

    Barn Door For Small Space

    Country practicality meets city chic with a space-saving barn door on rollers. The contrasting white walls and wrought-iron hardware showcase this clean, modern take on a farm door. It’s similar to a pocket door, but rather than sliding into the wall it slides over it—thus, requiring a bit less work for installation. You get that farmhouse-style flair and function!

    Zillow Digs home in Cambridge, MA

  3. Glass Bifold Doors

    Glass Bifold Doors

    Forget about those bi-fold doors hiding the furnace in your parents' basement. Today’s interior bi-folds come in a variety of styles and colors, and can be a useful alternative in spaces where standard doors just won’t work. Available on Wayfair; $409.99.


  4. Pivot Doors

    Pivot Doors

    Pivot doors work well in spaces where there isn’t enough swing space in either direction for a standard door. These cleverly solve the problem of a door that swings too widely into (or out of) a room by splitting the door swing clearance between the spaces they separate. This design incorporates a glass sidelight to heighten the indoor/outdoor atmosphere of the room.

    Related: 14 Spaces That Blur the Line Between Indoors and Out

    Zillow Digs home in Del Mar, CA

  5. Shoji Doors

    Shoji Doors

    When is a door not a door? When it is a sliding wall. Traditional Japanese homes use shoji doors as a beautiful space-saving feature that provides privacy and room division. Made of washi paper, the traditional version of the door also allows adjoining rooms to become one large space when needed.

    Zillow Digs home in Bethesda, MD

  6. Dutch Doors

    Dutch Doors

    Need a window and a door in a tight space? A Dutch door with a window may be your answer. These useful doors are split horizontally, giving you the option of swinging open the top to let in fresh air or a warm spring breeze. 

    Related: 15 Old House Features We Were Wrong to Abandon


  7. Garage Door

    Garage Door In House

    Overhead garage doors are the ultimate space-savers; they open and close without cutting into living space and stow efficiently along the ceiling. 

    Zillow Digs home in Los Angeles, CA

  8. French Accordion Doors

    Accordion Door

    Long gone are the days of tacky wood-vinyl accordion doors. While you can still find versions of those cheap and easy dividers, the accordion door has received a style upgrade. Here, these doors blend the functional accordion design with the elegance of French doors. The glass panes let light shine through, and the door takes up little space when open. 

    Related: 21 Clever Tricks to Make Your Home Look Bigger and Brighter


  9. Glass Sliding Doors

    Glass Sliding Doors

    Sliding glass doors aren’t just for your home’s exterior. Inside, glass doors open up rooms that might feel dark and cramped, and they add a sense of luxury to your space.

    Zillow Digs home in Malibu, CA

  10. Mirrored Doors

    Mirrored Interior Doors

    You might not be able to knock down walls to actually make your small room bigger, but you can make it feel bigger. Mirrored doors reflect more light around the room creating the illusion that it’s bright and spacious.

    Related: 21 Ways to Make a Small Bedroom Big

    Zillow Digs home in San Francisco, CA

  11. Don't Miss!


    Money-saving, time-saving—and yes, sometimes even life-saving—the latest and greatest smart home technologies span from self-programming thermostats to voice-activated TV controls to video doorbells and beyond. Raise your home's IQ!