San Francisco Considers Tiniest Apartments in U.S.

September 25, 2012

San Francisco lawmakers will vote Tuesday on a possible building code change that could allow some of the tiniest apartments in the country. 

The new apartments could be as small as 220 square feet, which would include a kitchen, closet, and bathroom. In San Francisco, current building codes require that just a living room alone be 220 square feet. 

Those in favor of the micro units say that the smaller apartments would provide a more affordable housing option to the city’s “many single residents who have been priced out of the rental market as the region experiences a resurgent technology industry,” the Associated Press reports. 

The apartments would likely rent for $1,200 to $1,500 a month and could accommodate up to two people. The average apartment rent in San Francisco is $2,734, which has risen 13 percent over last year's levels, according to RealFacts.

Some have spoken out against the micro units, arguing that the smaller apartments would boost population density and cause strain on public transit. 

"Although in our fantasy world everyone would live in a single-family home or a huge spacious flat, the reality of life is that not everyone can afford that," Scott Wiener, a San Francisco supervisor, told the Los Angeles Times.

Source: “San Francisco Could Allow Among Tiniest Apartments in U.S.,” Associated Press (Sept. 24, 2012) and “San Francisco Considers Allowing Nation’s Tiniest Micro-Apartments,” The Los Angeles Times (Sept. 24, 2012)

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