I ended up here -- like many others -- after deciding on a whim to move from Houston to Seattle for my dream job in social media. Of course, like most early 20-somethings, my savings account was a barren wasteland. The micro-studio I found offered a low down payment, a month-by-month lease, and came fully furnished. Since I had moved here with everything I owned in two suitcases, we were perfect for each other.
Micro-studios, or single-occupancy dwellings that normally range from 100 to 400sqft, started sprouting up around the city in 2012, and have increased in number and popularity every year since. They offer an alternative to expensive one-bedroom apartments, or having to share a living space with a roommate. Many of them, like mine, come fully furnished and offer flexible short term leases. Despite the noticeable lack of amenities -- like central cooling and a full kitchen -- it’s half the price of a one-bedroom apartment in the city.
But living in a micro-studio is no easy feat. In fact, ask people who have lived in a miniature apartment for any amount of time, and most will tell you they hate it. One reason is that living in such tiny spaces may actually cause psychological health problems. Yet that isn’t stopping people from signing leases. It raises the question, at what point does convenience trump well-being? From my own experience, I can attest that living in a micro-studio makes you feel like Harry Potter under the stairs at the Dursley’s. Only no one is coming to save you. You're stuck there -- you, your thoughts, your mini fridge, and IKEA silverware.