| by Kenneth Chase | 100 comments

What are “Micro Apartments”? | The B1M

Micro apartments are increasingly appearing in some of the world’s largest and most densely populated cities, but what exactly are micro apartments? Around the size of a single garage, Micro apartments are exactly what the name suggests – tiny residences. And they are being touted as one solution to the affordable housing crises facing many major cities. Micro apartments typically range from 400 square feet down to as little as 200 square feet in size (that’s between 37 and 19 metres square). They typically consist of just one room and usually include space for sleeping and sitting, together with a kitchenette, a bathroom and a limited amount of storage. The term has come to prominence in recent years, as the world’s densest cities have struggled to accommodate the increasing numbers of people wanting to live centrally. While small apartments have historically been a feature of many major cities, as buildings have been adapted and sub-divided in an ad-hoc manner, this new wave of residences are being deliberately designed and built to be small. In New York, for example, the city’s first micro-unit apartment building has recently completed. The winner of a competition organized by former New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg, the tower in Manhattan’s Kips Bay neighbourhood contains 55 units that range in size from 250 to 370 square feet (that’s around 23 to 34 square metres). All of the apartments in this housing prototype are below the minimum space required by the city’s housing codes for a new-build single person dwelling, which in New York is 400 square feet. However, the mayor’s office waived these regulations to allow this development to happen. The theory behind micro apartments is that by building smaller residences, more apartments can be built as part of a development, and therefore the individual cost of an apartment can be reduced. As the number of people living alone is increasing, this solution provides a more affordable option for students and young professionals who want to prioritise location over space. Although these apartments are undoubtedly small this does not mean they have to be cramped and architects and designers are working hard to at least create a sense of space by incorporating high ceilings, Juliette balconies and clever configurations. Often taking inspiration from boat design, the apartment’s interiors are designed to maximize space. They can include built-in and retractable furniture, such as with pull-down beds, folding desks and tables that allow individual spaces to have multiple uses, as well as including extra-small or hidden appliances. Of course micro apartments are not only being built in New York. Other notable examples of the trend can be found in London, where Pocket Living are designing numerous blocks of small apartments that meet the city’s space standards at 400 square feet. The developer’s current largest scheme is a 24-storey tower in Wandsworth town centre. In Canada, developer Urban Capital are leading the way in mirco apartments. Their Smart House development in Toronto contains 256 units that are as small as 276 square feet. As the demand for space in the centre of the world’s largest cities continues to increase, these small dwellings are set to make a big impact. If you enjoyed this video and would like to get more from the definitive video channel for construction, subscribe to The B1M.



Oct 10, 2017, 11:33 am Reply

no need for design or concept development, japan has been building these apartments for decades and has it down to a fine art.

Dos AussieThai

Oct 10, 2017, 1:25 pm Reply

It sounds like this is a new dwelling concept, but hasn't "studio apartment" been in existence for a long, long time?

Buzz Killington

Oct 10, 2017, 2:37 pm Reply

way bigger than where I live currently…. ?

Adam Campbell

Oct 10, 2017, 4:28 pm Reply

i would hate to hear sound levels i bet you could hear a person in another pod fart


Oct 10, 2017, 4:44 pm Reply

I like this channel a lot but it's kind of depressing to think of a future through its uploads, where middle and low income people are shoved into shrinking living quarters because the rich buy all the other plots for luxury skyscrapers and make land too expensive for the rest of us. If it gets to a point where landowners have to choose between a thousand small tenants or a dozen of well behaved, no risk billionaires, we can say goodbye to affordable housing in the city.

(I mean, it's not like it is already happening anyway)

Marshall Steeves

Oct 10, 2017, 6:27 pm Reply

I bought a 250 sq ft condo right in the center of Downtown Portland. It has everything I need and I couldn't be more happy to be an owner of a piece of Downtown!

Cheeky Devil

Oct 10, 2017, 11:53 pm Reply

Here in Toronto, we’re not used to the concept of living in such small spaces, but for anybody who’s lived or has been here recently can attest to, the construction boom in this city is insane, building condo after condo, our skyline literally changes every six months, with each tower growing higher and higher. As such, real estate is at a premium, as is space. I was recently reading on a local website called urbanToronto.ca, about the beginnings of micro apartments in the city. Personally, I don’t think I could live in one, but in the future we may have no choice as land becomes more and more scarce, and prices are astronomical. An average one bedroom apartment in Toronto now goes for about $2500 a month, that’s not including utilities. If they can build these micro apartments, and rent them out for much less, I can see them satisfying a fundamental need in this city. The reality is, these tiny living spaces are to become the new normal, as cities like Toronto, and in cities much bigger than us, continue to grow at a rate faster than they can keep up with. So practicality wise, these micro apartments make a lot of sense, and are much quicker and cheaper to build. It’ll be really interesting to see how the future turns out, as it is the city that I grew up in is long gone, all of its towers buried in even taller, newer condominium and office towers that dwarf anything we’ve ever had before. Over 100,000 new residents call Toronto home each year, and we’re fast approaching the 7 million mark, that’s a lot of people to house every year, if we’re growing that fast, I can only imagine the growth rate in more populated areas in Asia and the Middle East.


Oct 10, 2017, 5:34 am Reply

its the acceptance of the inequality in society


Nov 11, 2017, 11:44 am Reply

Yes good Goy, live alone in a cubicle in a densely populated 3rd world shithole, what a future for the west.


Nov 11, 2017, 3:20 pm Reply

Stack them and stack them.


Nov 11, 2017, 4:08 pm Reply

Micro apartments will work out fine. Just ask any inmate how much space one really needs.

Get used to living like this, and all you have to do is rob a bank and then you get a similar space with free room & board for several years!

Leo Evans

Nov 11, 2017, 4:43 pm Reply

What are his ears


Nov 11, 2017, 5:22 pm Reply

The end is near.

Pola & Bryson

Nov 11, 2017, 5:37 pm Reply

Its not space in London thats the problem, its cost. There are hundred of thousands of empty properties in London because the rent costs are sky high and salaries are not increasing at the same rate

Fast Maymay

Nov 11, 2017, 7:32 pm Reply

But weren't these in Japan but in hotel form first.


Nov 11, 2017, 3:58 am Reply

Oh jeez I am 100% excited for the future where we will live in little pods and eating 100% chemical food


Nov 11, 2017, 7:16 am Reply

Micro apartments are the same as micro transactions but in real life btw I’m going to watch the video now


Nov 11, 2017, 7:49 am Reply

Don't ever take a shit in a micro apartment.


Nov 11, 2017, 5:07 am Reply

At some point a city  can get too populated to be worth living in. A  person can go crazy living in a tin can, walking around a million people to get to a 10 hr a day job. There is a reason people live in the suburbs and in rural areas.  When you  have to resort to living on the 10 story in a room smaller than my garage, it is time to get out of dodge.

Tue Le

Dec 12, 2017, 3:39 am Reply

This is related to those "super skinny" skyscrapers.


Dec 12, 2017, 1:06 am Reply

20-35 m^2 is the standard size of a one room flat in most Soviet buildings, regardless of the city they were built in (big or not), so apparently "micro-appartments" are the predominant type of appartments in my country.

Platypus Paws

Jan 1, 2018, 4:26 am Reply

Why is it anyone else's business if someone wants to live in a micro-apartment? What a backward and silly regulation. Everyone sees the apartment before they buy or move in!

Marco Polo

Jan 1, 2018, 12:19 pm Reply

This is a stupid idea, you can fit people comfortably in a dense city, if you just flooded the market with highrise with modest spaces, but lo and behold the powers that be prefer to maximise profits at the expense of the common mans quality of life. History will harshly judge us for this one day. The same way we judge slavery today.


Feb 2, 2018, 8:29 pm Reply

"a baffroom" 0:47


Feb 2, 2018, 8:33 pm Reply

Lived in several of these over the years, they can feel claustrophobic if you spend a lot of time at home.

Mc Chaotic Neutral & Rusty Shackleford & Company

Feb 2, 2018, 4:21 am Reply

Live in your gilded cage

Tranos Jenner

Feb 2, 2018, 12:03 am Reply

So Micro-apartments are pretty much stacked Tiny Houses?


Mar 3, 2018, 2:06 am Reply

These are everywhere in japan. They’ve been there for decades.

Frank Blackcrow

Mar 3, 2018, 2:30 pm Reply

I have seen people make their own around that size.. some on a trailer.
What that is shown in this video is high impact living on a small foot print.. for those people who live alone…. possibly still at a high rent price too.

Raven Records

Apr 4, 2018, 1:08 am Reply

Not to be rude, but everyone who narrates these videos seems to always have too much spit in their mouth.


Apr 4, 2018, 3:01 pm Reply

Toronto highly populated city !
We still got a lot of land that is not filled up !
We not New York neither Shanghai or Beijing!
Canadian goverment should not be allowed to build a WashrooM size Condos

Alex K.

Apr 4, 2018, 4:49 pm Reply

So 400 square feet apartments are considered "micro" in London? WTF?

Philip Jackson

Apr 4, 2018, 10:33 pm Reply

Buy a house cheaply outside the city and commute in on a Monday morning. Stay at your rented micro apartment during the week and retire to your spacious home on Friday evening. In my mind that is the best use for micros.

Evergreen XCVI

Apr 4, 2018, 9:41 pm Reply

If universities used this, tuition would probably drop a couple thousand bucks.

Abhay Sharma

Jun 6, 2018, 4:35 am Reply

New Delhi needs 1 million of them or maybe more who can surpass the Tokyo anytime in next decade in terms of population.


Jun 6, 2018, 12:39 pm Reply

Hamster cages for humans! NO THANK YOU VERY MUCH!!!


Jul 7, 2018, 6:46 am Reply

Something coined by property developers to make it sound cool, but really is an excuse to build super tiny flats and sell them at normal prices.


Jul 7, 2018, 9:12 am Reply

Thats depressing.

Fraser McFadyen

Aug 8, 2018, 10:40 am Reply

I really like the innovative use of space in some of these small flats and the 'tiny house' movement is really interesting. However, we shouldn't lose sight of the fact that these are a symptom of a housing crisis. If people are choosing to live in smaller spaces, then that's great. If they have no choice and are being forced into this kind of living, then that's not great.

The development the video mentions in Wandsworth has flats for GBP 225k to 330k. For some reason, the government (ie. the taxpayer) will pay over a third of the cost of the more expensive ones if you are a first-time home owner. To be eligible for this, you must earn 66k or less.

So, pretty wealthy people, earning over sixty grand a year, can have their home purchase subsidised by the taxpayer in order to "get a foot on the property ladder" and continue to inflate the bubble? I don't get it. I don't see the value for the tax-paying public. Why are we funding this? It seems like a massive transfer of public money into private hands.

name name

Aug 8, 2018, 12:18 pm Reply

This is some next level dystopian propaganda shit right here.

Comrade Charlotte

Aug 8, 2018, 3:54 pm Reply

Nice job reinventing tenements


Sep 9, 2018, 8:44 am Reply

I live in 26m2. It's plenty enough for one person.

Donavan LoForte

Sep 9, 2018, 1:58 am Reply

Nope. None of those were micro apartments. More like a one bedroom. Basic.

Devan Stacy

Oct 10, 2018, 10:39 pm Reply

I live in a 250 sqft. apartment in Hamburg, Germany and it isn’t affordable at all, costing 895€ per month.

Nandhu _indian

Oct 10, 2018, 10:33 am Reply

I hope this technique will surely reach India.

Ramesh Dubey

Oct 10, 2018, 7:47 am Reply

Work from home.& your home could be anywhere affordable! Commute only when necessary.

huajie666 liu

Oct 10, 2018, 11:12 am Reply

Love it. Location is key. A good solution to the problem.


Oct 10, 2018, 4:20 am Reply

Those apartments are not that small.

Bunker Sieben

Oct 10, 2018, 4:52 pm Reply

They are kind of cute, like a toy. I don't think I could handle living in something that small though.


Oct 10, 2018, 8:50 pm Reply

It's a way to house modern day wage slaves.

I agree with you

Oct 10, 2018, 4:44 am Reply

Those apartments don't look that small to me. I thought they were going to be REALLY tiny.

Mr Nep

Oct 10, 2018, 10:42 pm Reply

Shoeboxes yay

Gery A

Oct 10, 2018, 10:23 pm Reply

Micro apartments are: A SCAM.

Malcolm Price

Oct 10, 2018, 1:49 pm Reply

Does size matter? A few comments suggest that it is still subject to inequality. Smaller apartments
are still charging the same rents or selling for unaffordable prices for the majority of people. It needs the same disruption as in other sectors. I applaud the concept I just hope it can challenge the housing market and put competition back into an inflated market place. Create greater choice and competition would benefit more people.

Ruslan Hamidullin

Oct 10, 2018, 5:58 pm Reply

Технологии строительства из СССР!)

Julian Coulden

Oct 10, 2018, 10:03 pm Reply

Why on earth would anyone choose to ,live in a rabbit hutch? Ok for a student perhaps but ridiculously impractical for any one who isn’t a hobbit

Prime Minister

Oct 10, 2018, 10:49 am Reply



Oct 10, 2018, 11:59 am Reply

Micro Apartments are the most insidious parts of capitalism trying to make us happy with less. It is disrespectful and reduces the value of the human as we become more and more commodified.

Yevgeniy Podgayetskiy

Oct 10, 2018, 4:32 pm Reply

Would be happy to see more content about affordable/micro housing.


Oct 10, 2018, 1:30 am Reply

This is perfect for students and young professionals.
I know a guy who paid 1.5k USD/month to live in a basement room in NY. He had half a window 🙁

Large cities are not sustainable. They make jobs, but they do not make it possible to have a family, so in a way they reduce the population. It's not sustainable for life.

Daniel Lee

Oct 10, 2018, 3:39 am Reply

No thank you I like my 20 acre farm


Oct 10, 2018, 3:34 pm Reply

Micro-apartments : 37 to 19 m²… oh americans… in Paris an appartment for 1 person is between 8 to 20 m² and you know what ? it doesn't lower the price !

David Rosner

Oct 10, 2018, 5:02 pm Reply

Micro apartments sound very Japanese…?


Nov 11, 2018, 5:39 am Reply

Going to micro won't help if prices are still going to rise. Look @ NYC, LONDON, HONG KONG…. they have tiny apartments, yet still expensive. The solution is better transportation services that could reduce commuting from and to places, therefore allowing people to live further away from work.

Steve breezy

Nov 11, 2018, 12:19 am Reply

No its not people are not meant to live like that

bailey buster

Nov 11, 2018, 12:50 am Reply

Micro apartment=studio

Same size and amenities, just fancier name so they can charge more!


Nov 11, 2018, 9:02 am Reply

Absolutely disgusting

David Johnson

Nov 11, 2018, 11:53 pm Reply

Micro apartments are absolute garbage. This stack em and pack em housing  should be banned! It's truly amazing that people can actually be brainwashed to like this garbage.

Abu Feras Abdullah

Nov 11, 2018, 11:13 pm Reply

I enjoyed this video , but not the voice

Brian Gerald

Nov 11, 2018, 7:37 am Reply

Better than nothing I suppose but I don't like the idea of the obnoxious oppressive house price regime currently dictated by damned cruel white male supremacist criminals who want to prostitute MANY Females as their worth & promote criminal activities to survive! Man, there's a need for Emancipation, True Justice & Proper Compensation! These were designed particularly for Student Campuses by me 2013! damned white supremacist criminals didn't want Y'all to Know this! It's this wicked conceited bullshit why I haven't made any new videos fro MY Website (Youtube) since 2013! Obviously there is a need for Emancipation, True Justice & Proper Compensation NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Jose Escobar

Nov 11, 2018, 11:04 pm Reply

Metric system please


Nov 11, 2018, 1:02 am Reply



Nov 11, 2018, 8:18 pm Reply

Wish we could just stop artificially inflating prices by nonsensical zoning etc. instead. A bit bigger houses aren't actually much at all more expensive to build, just the extra shit we've put around the build cost.

Zetetik –

Dec 12, 2018, 8:36 pm Reply

This is pretty much the old "Modular Apartment" idea from the 1970s

I wonder how well they are soundproofed?

Henare Howard

Dec 12, 2018, 8:11 pm Reply

Accessibility and shared spaces are issues as density increases. Elevators become as jam packed as highways


Jan 1, 2019, 2:05 am Reply

Not so new. The major southeast Asian countries like Japan, Korea, Hong Kong etc have been doing this for over a decade.


Jan 1, 2019, 6:35 am Reply

Or shall we call them vertical garage.


Jan 1, 2019, 8:09 am Reply

Bullshit. New York should have never allowed the minimum allowable liveable space to be reduced. Bullshit. Worst idea ever. I would like to see the architects that are designing these to live in them.

James Cross

Jan 1, 2019, 8:23 am Reply

So London minimum standards are 44sq.m. and a micro apartment starts at 40sq.m. That's quite telling!

Charley Marsteller

Jan 1, 2019, 7:51 pm Reply

My unit is 117 sq feet and I've been here 36 years, sharing with my partner who is transAtlantic


Jan 1, 2019, 11:27 am Reply

Micro-apartments are not there to solve space problems in big cities, big cities have huge ammount of empty unussed space; but to be able to keep lowering salaries and still accommodate these low income workforce within the range of the cities.


Jan 1, 2019, 12:04 am Reply

Interesting ears.


Feb 2, 2019, 5:09 am Reply

I think 500-600FT would be my minimum comfort level for an apartment.
700-900FT being ideal.


Feb 2, 2019, 2:17 pm Reply

San Francisco needs more housing desperately, but good luck building them. Virtually everyone there is a NIMBY.

Jay Russell

Feb 2, 2019, 1:40 am Reply

Some down to 200 square feet?? I once had a jailcell that size.


Feb 2, 2019, 4:05 pm Reply

i know one thing, america really needs capsule apartments, if we had capsule apartments, there would be way less homeless, and people could find a break

Łukasz Satterthwaite

Mar 3, 2019, 1:05 pm Reply

In Poland nobody condiders a flat that size to be 'micro'. It's rather quite common here to live on limited space even in smaller towns. I grew up in a family of 4 in a small town, we lived on 45m2, only two rooms, a kitchen and a bathroom (no living room) and that's standard still now.


Mar 3, 2019, 2:45 am Reply

Answer: Slave's quarters.

B Naylor

Mar 3, 2019, 1:35 am Reply

Short Answer: a way to lower people's expectations for their lives.

Lucas Petry

Mar 3, 2019, 11:43 pm Reply

I love micro apartments and tiny houses. ?

General Lee N Knass /knot retired/

Apr 4, 2019, 11:09 pm Reply

I think IKEA sells these

September 19

Apr 4, 2019, 12:53 pm Reply

Sounds like a great idea, until you live there

Pedro M. Johnson

Apr 4, 2019, 2:04 pm Reply

Hi B1M please check out the massive build build build program of the Philippines government with masive infrastructure projects through out the whole country.

Thanks and more power to B1M.


Apr 4, 2019, 6:02 pm Reply

Yup… that's why ya go to college for 4-8 years.. to work your butt off .. become valuable in the market place.. improve your lot in life (and of those around you) .. become a success in your field.. only to bed down in a house the size of a walk-in closet.
This is a stupid concept.


May 5, 2019, 12:17 am Reply

Judging from the pictures shown in the video, they dont even seem that bad. But i know in reality, places like Hong Kong for example its much worse


May 5, 2019, 12:18 am Reply

I do not think it's a question of space, in most cases, it has more to do with the market, for example, in Mexico City there are fewer people living in the central areas than ten years ago, and even so, microapartments are beginning to assume as the only optimal option to buy an apartment in central areas


Jul 7, 2019, 2:00 pm Reply

I would guess that the savings will mostly go to the developers.

steeve steeve

Jul 7, 2019, 2:55 pm Reply

"as the number of people living alone is increasing"
I feel encouraged, at least I'm not alone.


Jul 7, 2019, 8:42 pm Reply

I checked the prices at the New York micro apartments and they are still expensive. Hardly affordable for someone who is single and low income. If you are single and middle income you might just be able to afford one of the apartments, but your have to have a near perfectly freaking credit rating. How is this supposed to help the housing crisis?

Jeff B

Jul 7, 2019, 12:25 am Reply

We all learned from Bruce Willis' unit in "The Fifth Element", didn't we?

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