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The Micro Apartments of NYC

Finding a living space for cheap in NYC can be rough, especially when you don’t have roommates to share the rent with. Thankfully, or to many people’s dismay, micro-apartments are a thing in the city.

What are Micro Apartments?

Micro apartments in NYC can measure from as small as 55 sq ft to a slightly bigger 500 sq ft. Micro-apartments aren’t unique to NYC though. They are also famously common in Hong Kong. While being small enough just to shimmy through and only being able to lay flat enough to sleep, HK’s micro-apartments are also notorious for being more expensive than they need to be. Thankfully, in NYC, these micro-apartments come at a better price as compared to HK, and sometimes with more space. These tiny spaces usually come with a combination of a living room, dining room, and kitchen area, all in one studio space. The bathrooms and showers will most likely be shared spaces, and sometimes the kitchen will be a shared space as well. Shared space will be located outside of the units.

Benefits of Living in a Micro Apartment

Living in a micro-apartment may not be the first choice for many of those moving to the city, but micro-living can save on cost and can accommodate more people in a populated place like NYC. Micro-apartments are suited for those who really only need a space to sleep, and for some of the prices, it’s well worth it. TikTok creator, Axel Webber actually rose to fame early this year documenting his life in NYC living in a micro-apartment

How to Efficiently Use Your Space in a Micro Apartment

In some cases, micro-apartments will come with a loft to help renters utilize the small space more efficiently. Consider minimizing what you bring in if you reside in a micro-apartment or are actively looking for one to live in. If the micro-apartment is loftless, sleep on a twin-size bed instead of a queen or king-sized bed. Alternatively, a murphy bed can also help save space. Don’t worry, you won’t get stuck in there like a cartoon character. If you’re lucky and the micro-apartment does come with a loft, choose whatever size of bed that fits there.

For other pieces of furniture, try using the same desk you sit at for work as a meal table. Or, buy a standing desk to save more space.  For the price and the small living space, most micro-apartments come with a microwave, mini-fridge, some sort of closet space, and a sink. If you’re not one for extravagant amenities, it’s perfect. 

Those Against Micro Apartments

Not surprisingly, there are people who are against micro-living in NYC. Some say that it is outrageous to live in such a small space, with such a high price tag. Not to mention, having to then to share a bathroom and shower. Many believe that you may actually end up spending more money simply eating out or trying to escape your small apartment.

Where are Micro Apartments?

Units in this building in St. Marks Place have been rented for as low as $1,100 per month. You’d generally find micro apartments for rent rather than for sale.

Let’s be honest, micro-living isn’t for everyone, but for those who are coming to the city mainly for the purpose of working and sleeping, micro-apartments would be perfect. It really just depends on how you utilize the small space if you want to live comfortably. 

Nina Yu is a freelance writer who is currently based out of Salt Lake City. They are interested in topics like social justice issues, travel, and beauty/skincare. When they are not writing, you can find them hiking, laughing to a fun podcast, or reading a good book.