Micro apartments, once considered a momentary fad, are become an increasingly popular choice for city residents across the nation. It's a trend that might signal the beginnings of a shift in Bainbridge Island apartment living as well.

The tiny apartments known as “micro apartments” generally feature a small bedroom, private sitting area, bathroom...but not much more. In a typical floor plan, a living unit has 200 square feet or less ­-a far cry from American norms for the better part of a century. It is true, though, that there is nothing new about cramped apartments and shared living spaces. What sets today’s micro apartments apart is their success in combining comfort and livability with the affordability that is their main appeal. Design features such as folding bed alcoves, high ceilings and raised closets help to create an illusion of space when the actual living area is tinier than even the smallest traditional apartment.

Smaller apartments share micro apartments' standout characteristic: micro rental prices. It's an attracting that has always proved popular among younger Bainbridge Island apartment dwellers with entry level jobs, service industry employees who want to live closer to work, older single adults, students, and retirees who want to shed their empty nests and settle in convenience-packed urban areas. With reduced square space, micro apartments are not only cheaper to buy or rent, but usually significantly easier to clean and maintain. Many of the new micro apartment units also feature nearly as much storage space as much larger apartments.

The newest wave of micro apartments do have their share of detractors. Some have expressed concern that encouraging landlords to increase their ability to collect rent from more tenants in a smaller space will likely invite rent increases for standard-sized apartments.

Urban living remains desirable for many—but affordability remains a limiting factor. Micro apartments raise a new possibility for providing a cost-effective option that wasn't on the horizon even a few years ago. Whether or not the “thinking smaller” approach of micro apartments affects local scene, keeping track of its popularity on the national front is a good idea for area real estate watchers. There's no denying it could point to a changing environment for our own Bainbridge Island market for tenants, landlords and real estate investors.

If you have been surveying the current crop of investment properties, you don't have to be planning your own Bainbridge Island micro apartments to make forward-thinking decisions. Contact me today to go over all the emerging options!

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