Pros and Cons: Studio vs. One-Bedroom Apartment

In our Pros and Cons series, we weigh the advantages and disadvantages of important decisions that apartment dwellers are making every day.

When you’re hunting for a place to live alone, you’ll generally encounter studio and one-bedroom apartments. The main difference between these spaces is that, in the latter, the bedroom is walled off rather than conjoined with the rest of the apartment. Is a fluid studio apartment setup better for you than a one-bedroom apartment arrangement? Below, explore the pros and cons of choosing a studio versus a one-bedroom apartment.

studio one-bedroom apartment

Pros of a studio apartment

May cost less to rent

Although apartment rental prices vary by factors beyond merely square footage, studio apartments tend to cost less to rent than one-bedroom apartments do. If you search for both studio and one-bedroom apartments in your apartment hunt, you may find that studio apartment rents will better suit your budget.

May have lower utility bills

Since studio apartments tend to occupy fewer square feet than one-bedroom apartments do, they often require less electricity or gas to heat in the winter or cool in the summer. Between the lower monthly rent that studio apartments often have and the potential for lower utility bills, studio apartments may work better for you than one-bedroom apartments might if you’re on a tight budget.

Easier furnishing

Studio apartments tend to be smaller – though this size difference doesn’t always hold true – which can make them easier to furnish and decorate. Not only does living in a smaller apartment limit the number of decorating mistakes you could potentially make, but it also allows you to reduce your inventory of, and expenses for, a major decoration category: furniture.

Cons of a studio apartment

Less space

Studio apartments tend to be smaller than one-bedroom apartments, so when comparing a studio versus a one-bedroom apartment, you may find that studio apartments don’t fit your needs as well if you have many belongings or just like having a spacious apartment. Even if a studio and a one-bedroom apartment have the same square footage, studio apartments tend to have fewer closets than one-bedrooms do as well.

The lack of space often associated with studio apartments may extend to the kitchen, too. Some studio apartments lack a full-size kitchen and instead include a kitchenette that may be too compact for certain renters’ liking. If you enjoy cooking and baking and thus prefer a large kitchen, you may need to consider how much you’re willing to compromise on kitchen space with a studio apartment.

Furniture to fit the space

While studio apartments might be easier to furnish overall, the smaller space may mean that you have to replace the furniture you already have. Your couch, bed, dresser, and other furniture may clutter the space and make it feel smaller than it already is. Unless you’re prepared to buy all new furniture, you’ll need to go the extra mile to ensure all your belongings fit in this smaller space.

Lack of separate spaces

In a studio apartment, only the bathroom is walled off – the kitchen, living room, and bedroom all flow into each other without any real or permanent dividers. This lack of separate spaces in a studio apartment means that, if you’re the kind of person who has guests stay over often, you may struggle to achieve the privacy that you and your guest desire when you both want to sleep. 

Likewise, if you work from home, you may prefer to set up a dedicated office space in your apartment, and without walls dividing your apartment into sections, you may struggle to separate your workspace from your bedroom. Setting up a work desk in your bedroom or just near your bed can lead to worse sleep.

Would you rather live in a studio or a one-bedroom apartment? Sound off in the comments!

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Comments (1)

  1. Avatar Kevin

    I had lived in a charming studio apartment in Brooklyn Heights, NY on the Brooklyn Heights Promenade, for 17 years.

    I had 500 square feet of “quality space” 19 foot ceilings, hardwood floor, 2 large windows, 2 large closets with 19 foot ceilings,.

    BUT this was NOT a real apartment is was a corner of a hacked Brownstone a single family home cut up in the 1950s to Multiple Family Dwelling.

    I had to be creative NO linen closet, NO “flow” the kitchen was a stove, sink, etc. in one corner, a square room to create a home.

    On the cheap I made it beautiful “trash to treasure” finds, a Murphy Bed, and claimed a spot outside the windows where garbage cans might have sat became MY garden.

    Paint, wallpaper, NEVER asked landlord for much of anything did what I could myself.

    A cheap rent stabilized jewel I LOVED my studio had GREAT times, GREAT parties, Christmas tree, etc.