My Apartment Is 69 Square Feet

My apartment is 69 square feet.

I know this because I measured it myself.

I live in New York City and my apartment is 69 square feet.

I have officially lost it.

I have officially lost it because I know that my apartment is 69 square feet and yet I am somehow okay with that.

I’m okay with that even though I’ve watched YouTube videos about people with 70 sq ft or 90 sq ft apartments in NYC, and I laughed at how dumb they sounded talking about how great their tiny, DUMB apartments were.

“I prefer a small space – it’s so cozy – really great!”

“I don’t mind sitting sideways on the toilet to avoid my knees hitting the wall. You totally get used to it!”

Or they crawl up the ladder to their lofted bed and lie down and there’s an inch between them and the ceiling and they say, with a straight face, “This is how I sleep,” and then, when met with silence, they laugh nervously.

I felt sorry for them, these dumb people.

But I don’t feel sorry for me, which is really what makes me question my sanity. I feel lucky, actually. I live in Manhattan for under $1000 a month (that’s a steal for Manhattan!) in my favorite neighborhood, the East Village. And my knees don’t touch the wall when I sit on the toilet. So that’s good.

I don’t have very many things (unlike the people in the videos I watched), so there’s actually a decent amount of unfilled space in my apartment. It feels minimalist at best, or spartan at worst, but not claustrophobic.

I’m okay living in a 69-square-foot apartment because I am surrounded by the playground that is Manhattan. My apartment is just the place where I store my food and most important possessions (also food) and crash at night. Manhattan is not just exciting, it’s thrilling. I love walking down the streets and feeling its energy. Even in my familiar neighborhood, I walk past dim, candle-lit restaurants I have never noticed before or slim alleys that lead to hidden community gardens.

After living in a 69-square-foot apartment for nine months, my tips are:

  • Trash all the things you don’t need (most important tip here)
  • Don’t loft your bed – that actually makes the space feel smaller
  • If you’re storing anything, try to store it out of sight
  • Accept that your small space can’t do as much as a large space

Now, would I prefer a larger place? Absolutely. Triple digit square footage – at the very least! – would be nice. The problem is I’d have to pay double what I’m paying now for a normal-sized studio in Manhattan. I can’t afford that, and it wouldn’t be worth it to me, anyway. So I am content with my current setup.

Have you lived in a small space before? Do you think I’m off my rocker, or just plain weird? Tell me what’s on your mind!

23 thoughts on “My Apartment Is 69 Square Feet

  1. I used to live in NY 🙂 I hear you – and you have a great attitude.
    I now live in a small room in LA in a community living situation. It’s in a place called Peace Awareness Labyrinth & Gardens, so I feel like the whole center is my backyard.
    Blessings to you, Tom. Enjoy NY

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  2. Rock and I have a trailer that’s not much bigger. We “vacation” in it, but spend most of our time outside. It has everything, though, and is a great place to go when the house seems too big. Good for you. Be content, but strive for more anyway.

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  3. Since never having been to NY. I cannot judge whether you are a] lucky or b] crazy. Obviously someone with mental issues, does not like labels of “crazy”. That’s still, a very small space to live. Smaller than 7×10 ft. You are paying under $1000 per month for this? I expect prisoners get a larger space? Yet, if you’re an extrovert, using the space outside as your home? Then all makes sense; no matter which city lived in. If your income matches your outgoing than doubly good. Remember, old age comes in a hurry. Cheers Jamie.

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  4. What I got from this is that you are living in Manhattan for less than I am living in Dallas…what?! Haha! Rent is crazy expensive! And my place is 500sqft. Which I enough for sure because I don’t like clutter. And someday, I will live in a house again, cause I miss a yard and gardening. Love your writing! And share pics of your place!

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    • Hi Andi!! I guess I should feel pretty lucky then! I definitely need to get some pics up. Only hard thing is it’s difficult to back up and really capture anything, haha.

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  5. For 18 months I lived in a ‘studio apartment’ that measured a total of 144 sq ft. When I moved to where I live now (still compact, but not that) I kept saying, ‘But it’s too big for one person.’ I’ve not yet got used to it, and I’ve been here 10 yrs. Yea, small is good. Large . . .? Why? In an overcrowded world.

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