What is a Micro Apartment? (Pics & Layout Options)

Updated July 20, 2021
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If you have ever wanted to scale down your lifestyle, you should consider a micro apartment.

These tiny apartments have low costs and can make living in big cities affordable. Micro-units often lie in desirable areas, and they pack a house’s amenities in a 200 square foot space.

Tiny housing does not match everyone’s needs, so we have broken down the benefits and layout options to see if the micro-apartment lifestyle works for you.

micro apartment layout
Isometric flat 3D concept vector interior of studio apartments with kitchen, bathroom, living room and bedroom

Defining Micro-Apartments

A micro-apartment is a small studio apartment suitable for one resident. They are usually as small as 200 to 400 square feet, but floor-to-ceiling windows can create the illusion of a larger room.

Most apartment buildings have common areas for socialization like a game room or lounge area. You will find some layouts with private bedrooms, shared bathrooms, kitchens, and even living rooms. 

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Others fit all of your modern amenities in one small space. You can sleep, cook, shower, and watch TV in a room the size of a standard master bedroom.

Micro-apartments make up for their compact size with the location. They are often downtown in thriving communities, where the lifestyle is a little more fast-paced, so you will only use your room for sleeping.

Who Lives in Micro-Apartments?

You will usually find younger people living in tiny apartments, particularly in expensive cities. Many micro-units cost as much as traditional studio apartments in less populated areas, but they are much cheaper than many other types of apartments in big cities.

The ideal micro-apartment resident has minimal possessions, prefers to use their home as a resting place, and has a lucrative job. Most stay for a short period until they can afford a larger space. 

Only 41% of micro-unit renters renew their leases because of the high costs and compact space. The high ceilings may fool you at first, but living in something so tiny can get frustrating if you wish to expand your possessions.

micro apartment layout

Benefits of Micro-Apartments

Micro-apartments do provide several benefits that may seem appealing to those in traditional housing. These include:


  • More freedom to move around
  • The ability to live alone in an urban area
  • Sense of community within the building
  • Tons of common spaces to interact with your neighbors
  • More affordable than larger apartments in similar locations
  • Conducive towards a minimalist lifestyle


If you do not want to settle down yet and wish to experience all the things that come with city living, a micro-apartment may work for you. You can make friends, enjoy a college-like lifestyle, and save some money.

Cons of Micro-Apartments

While they have their advantages, micro-apartments do have drawbacks, such as:


  • You cannot entertain many guests in the tiny space
  • Hard to move into one without purging your possessions
  • Costly considering their square footage
  • You will need to move elsewhere to start a family or store many day-to-day essentials
  • Unless you live in a dorm-style community building, you will do ALL of your living tasks in one place


If you don’t mind your home being just a sleeping place, or going to the bathroom in the same room you cook, you might like a micro-apartment. Just make sure you consider all of your options before signing the lease.

Layout Options

Most micro-apartments have these amenities:


  • Open kitchen
  • High ceilings
  • Balcony
  • Large windows
  • Storage to the ceiling
  • Kitchen bar
  • Communal spaces


Micro-apartments have many potential layouts. You might find a suite-style layout where you have your own bedroom but share a kitchen or bathroom for instance. Other apartments fit everything into one room.

If you have the former style, you can fit more items in your bedroom and carry what you need to the shared spaces. Those in the latter will need fold-up or lofted beds to save room during the day as they use their living space.

Try to choose one with an appealing layout. One with floor-to-ceiling windows looks larger and gives you a wonderful city view. Make sure you have plenty of shelves or cabinets for storage and opt for convertible furniture where possible.

Mirco apartment kitchen
Everything is Open in Small Modern White Kitchen

Micro or Studio Apartment

You should ask yourself these questions to decide if you can move into a micro-apartment. Depending on your answers, you may want to consider a studio apartment instead.


  • Do I have a lot of possessions? Or even a moderate amount?
  • Do I want to invite people over to my apartment?
  • Am I comfortable sharing my bathroom, kitchen, and living area with others?
  • Do I want or need to live in the heart of a city?
  • Is sacrificing space worth saving a few hundred bucks each month?


For those who wish to live a minimalist lifestyle, a micro-apartment may seem like an attractive option. You will only need essential items in your home, and you can use your place primarily for rest. 

If you want something a little bigger with a lot of the same amenities as a micro-apartment, Bigos has a great selection of studio apartments at around $1,000 near the city. Check one out today!

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