Author Topic: 432 sq ft efficiency, need advice for living essentials  (Read 2976 times)

Emergo

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432 sq ft efficiency, need advice for living essentials
« on: June 03, 2017, 03:53:39 PM »
I'm a single 28 year old man moving into this unit. I already plan to buy a comfy queen bed for $800 (i know this is probably high for you guys, but i need better sleep). I plan to buy a small desk to put against the window just for studying purposes. I already own a tv that ill put on the wall. I may get a sleeper sofa. And then a couple side tables to put books or eat on. Another desk for my computer. This unit already has a fridge, washer and dryer. Although i need to figure out how im gonna store my shoes somewhere that it wont stink up the place.

Any more advice on things i should buy? I dont mind spending a little more to get decent quality. Currently making 69k a year. This unit costs $700 every month. Roughly 15% of my gross if you include electricity, internet. Am i doing well? Please help me. Thanks.

mires

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Re: 432 sq ft efficiency, need advice for living essentials
« Reply #1 on: June 03, 2017, 04:48:10 PM »
Priority one: Find out why your shoes smell so bad that they would stink up your whole apartment.

Bracken_Joy

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Re: 432 sq ft efficiency, need advice for living essentials
« Reply #2 on: June 03, 2017, 04:55:06 PM »
Well, as for the last question "am I doing well", I would recommend a whole case study to know for sure. https://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/case-studies/how-to-write-a-'case-study'-topic/

As for the mattress, there are cheaper excellent mattresses: http://www.frugalwoods.com/2017/02/27/our-amazon-mattress-a-five-year-update/

If you don't have a range and oven (that's what an 'efficiency apartment' out here would be), then I recommend either an instant pot or an induction plate so you can cook at home. I've cooked 99% of my meals for years out of a studio, it can totally be done!

As for the shoes, 1- deodorize, 2- change your socks more often, 3- have 2 pairs of shoes you swap between, never wear the same pair back to back days.

Good luck =)

Emergo

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Re: 432 sq ft efficiency, need advice for living essentials
« Reply #3 on: June 03, 2017, 05:27:04 PM »
It has a oven and range.

Maybe im exaggerating about my shoes, i just never had them in the same room as the living room and bedroom.

Bracken_Joy

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Re: 432 sq ft efficiency, need advice for living essentials
« Reply #4 on: June 03, 2017, 06:28:45 PM »
It has a oven and range.

Maybe im exaggerating about my shoes, i just never had them in the same room as the living room and bedroom.

The shoe advice is the same whether you have terribly stinky shoes or not. Swapping shoes extends the lifespan of them. It gives them more time to 'bounce back' and bacteria and moisture that break them down to die off.

If you have an oven and a range then you should definitely have a whole host of cooking supplies, since that's a huge area of savings over eating out.

kina

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Re: 432 sq ft efficiency, need advice for living essentials
« Reply #5 on: June 03, 2017, 08:11:36 PM »
My advice is to not get a sleeper sofa. If you think you will be having guests, get an air mattress instead.

Emergo

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Re: 432 sq ft efficiency, need advice for living essentials
« Reply #6 on: June 03, 2017, 08:19:31 PM »
Its really for me...in case i fall asleep watching tv. I hate the arm rests on couches. I want to be able to lay down sideways while watching.

Beriberi

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Re: 432 sq ft efficiency, need advice for living essentials
« Reply #7 on: June 03, 2017, 09:14:51 PM »
Two desks and two beds for yourself in 432 sq feet?  I would suggest getting one desk that meets all your needs, and putting your tv near your regular bed. Or getting a second TV.

pbkmaine

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Re: 432 sq ft efficiency, need advice for living essentials
« Reply #8 on: June 03, 2017, 09:38:06 PM »
If you post a floor plan, we can make better suggestions.

Cranky

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Re: 432 sq ft efficiency, need advice for living essentials
« Reply #9 on: June 04, 2017, 05:56:26 AM »
IKEA sells shoe cabinets if you want to store them near the front door. Otherwise, you should just put your shoes in your closet.

Skip the desk(s) and get a small dining room table. You can eat on it, you can study there, and you can store your laptop on it.

Plus, you need kitchen stuff - dishes, silverware, a couple of pans, a microwave, some mugs...

You don't need a sleeper sofa, you need a comfortable couch you can sleep on - or you could just go to bed...

marty998

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Re: 432 sq ft efficiency, need advice for living essentials
« Reply #10 on: June 04, 2017, 06:11:21 AM »
A lot of beds are now designed with storage compartments underneath.

Villanelle

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Re: 432 sq ft efficiency, need advice for living essentials
« Reply #11 on: June 04, 2017, 07:01:07 AM »
Its really for me...in case i fall asleep watching tv. I hate the arm rests on couches. I want to be able to lay down sideways while watching.

If you fall asleep on a sleeper sofa, you are going to have get up and open it up in order to get a bed, in which case you can just go to your real bed.

If arms on the sofa are a problem, find one without arms.  And buying one desk, even it it is larger and slightly more expensive, will likely be cheaper and a better use of space than two separate desks.  I can't imagine why you couldn't study next to your computer.

Freedomin5

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Re: 432 sq ft efficiency, need advice for living essentials
« Reply #12 on: June 04, 2017, 07:14:09 AM »
You want furniture that can be used for multiple purposes. If you have a desk that you will use for studying, why do you need tables to hold books?

So for example, buy a bed with underbed storage to hold your books. As someone else mentioned, buy one larger table which doubles as a desk. If you need shelving, think tall shelving rather than horizontal shelving. Use that wall space.

And make sure you have a storage spot for everything, to keep your apartment from looking cluttered.

Kl285528

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Re: 432 sq ft efficiency, need advice for living essentials
« Reply #13 on: June 04, 2017, 08:31:35 AM »
Speaking of Ikea, I have always been intrigued how in their store they build out actual smaller sized apartments and show all of their furnishings and storage solutions. Really cool. 

wenchsenior

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Re: 432 sq ft efficiency, need advice for living essentials
« Reply #14 on: June 04, 2017, 08:55:45 AM »
A lot of beds are now designed with storage compartments underneath.

DH and I lived in an efficiency for ~8 years, where we somehow managed to get along fine while still having an iguana and snake, and sometimes his falconry hawk LOL.

Space was incredibly tight, though we did have a decent closet. 

We tried to use a lot of vertical space. We put in a couple of tall, narrow storage units on the unused walls, to act as pantry, etc.

One major helpful thing we did was just buy a mattress rather than an actual bed. We put it on a raised platform (~ 4 feet tall) of 2 by 4s stuck in one corner.  We fit a hand me down dresser under the long open side and a small book case under the short open side, leaving an opening on the long side to get underneath. Underneath we stored all the stuff we didn't use every day but needed to keep (camping stuff, etc).  At night, we just pulled  a chair over to use as a stepping stool up and down to the bed.




Rosy

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Re: 432 sq ft efficiency, need advice for living essentials
« Reply #15 on: June 04, 2017, 10:33:20 AM »
1. You are thinking long term, so take the time to look, feel and touch and decide on which classic style you want to live with. Sit on the chair for 5 minutes - is it really comfortable?, stretch out on that couch, is it too narrow, too tall, too deep, too hard or too soft?
My shopping advice - Ikea for ideas for small spaces, and at a minimum a leather gallery showroom and two furniture stores, before you make a final decision.
If you plan to live with your choices for the long term and drop some serious money, you owe it to yourself and your wallet to do a bit of research.
Online is always an option, but not before you actually know what you really want.

2. Measure your space and draw up a plan - somehow it often revises your perspective and final choices:) or inspires new ideas.
Tip from an expert - always measure the furniture - do not believe the measurements given:)

3. Spend your money on a good armless couch, a good bed (with drawer space beneath), two good chairs and a table cum desk.
Always think double duty and don't fall into the trap of buying everything too small, just because your place is small.
   
4. Consider lamps, pictures, pillows, curtains/shades and side tables as exchangeable down the line - you will want to breathe some fresh air into your decor from time to time and that is a good, cheap way to do it.
Here is where you can save some money, but bring good quality and joy into your life - try Home Goods and Penney's and Dillards and places like PierI and Wayfair and Overstock.com online.

5. Do not fill your place to the max! Always leave some free space. It feels good to have breathing room:) - You always need to leave room for something new to come into your life ...
6. Do go vertical, but also remember that all those open shelves tend to look cluttered. There are tall, slim cabinets you can buy to stash your stuff - place one at either end of your couch, so they are out of the way.

7. Definitely consider how you will use your space - do you need room for projects (on a table plus dedicated storage space), puzzles, prefer a separate study place or like to sit at the table with your best friend having a coffee, or prefer unwinding on the couch with a beer watching TV after work or playing endless games or will you have friends over on occasion?
Blackout curtains or bare glass - bookcase, plants, art, an oriental carpet, or just a TV on the wall, next to your bike rack?:) or some of all of that?
Living essentials should be totally dependent upon you - this is your space and your life - what do you treasure and enjoy?

8. Kitchen - cooking at home is practically a must if you want to save money unless you are lucky enough to get free food at work. Get an Instapot so you can steam, cook perfect rice, pressure cook veggies and slow cook roasts and ribs. You have a range and an oven, use it for sauteeing whatever, fix breakfast etc.

I like Ikea and the Dollar store for setting up house on a budget, from brooms to pots and glass ware to dishes, but I always invest in a great coffeemaker, excuse me, the new term seems to be coffee bar:)

Have fun - enjoy your new space!
« Last Edit: June 04, 2017, 10:37:26 AM by Rosy »

Chrissy

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Re: 432 sq ft efficiency, need advice for living essentials
« Reply #16 on: June 04, 2017, 12:06:27 PM »
Here's what I did in 425sqft.

Low, vintage credenza w/ TV on top, in front of 3 tall windows
Ikea cafe table & fold up chairs to one side
Loveseat facing TV & windows
Sofa table behind loveseat served as desk w/ office chair (chair faced windows)

Queen bed on risers, shoes in rolling box with lid underneath.  The bed didn't face the tv, but you could see it fine anyway.

Kwill

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Re: 432 sq ft efficiency, need advice for living essentials
« Reply #17 on: June 04, 2017, 12:27:05 PM »
Beyond the bed, I'd wait and see what you actually need. Do you have relatives and friends in the area who could give or lend you furniture and so forth? That could buy you a bit of time to pick out things that you really like and that fit your life.

What you need really depends on how you spend your time in the apartment. Have you lived on your own before to have a sense or what you would use and need? People have suggested using one table as both a desk and a dining table, but for me that would be really annoying, even though I'm happy without a sofa or television.

the_fella

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Re: 432 sq ft efficiency, need advice for living essentials
« Reply #18 on: June 04, 2017, 02:30:20 PM »
You can almost certainly find a cheaper bed, as others here have pointed out. Though, I would question whether you even need to purchase a bed if you're also getting a sleeper sofa. I'd forgo the bed to leave more room for other things. I've found a decent amount of free furniture simply by hitting up my facebook friends. I've gotten two free recliners that way, and 4-5 dining room chairs. I found my coffee table in a dumpster maybe 15 years ago. Do you have kitchen stuff like dishes, flatware, etc? If you can't find it free, I'd recommend checking out a thrift store and/or Dollar Tree.