In our Pros and Cons series, we weigh the advantages and disadvantages of important decisions that apartment dwellers are making every day.
Some people living in small apartments may struggle with properly storing their belongings and groceries in tiny kitchens. In bachelor apartments, a traditional kitchen stovetop and oven are absent, sometimes replaced instead by a hot plate or a small electric range. In other apartments, there is no kitchen at all, just a bedroom and bathroom (and perhaps enough space for a small living room). Though apartments with a partial or just no kitchen are rare, they’re certainly not unheard of – here are the pros and cons of no kitchen or a partial kitchen in an apartment.
Pros of no kitchen or partial kitchen in an apartment
Apartments with no stovetop or kitchen tend to be cheaper – in some cases, far cheaper – to rent than their traditional kitchen-boasting counterparts. Compounding the lower rent is that, with no stove or oven, your utility bills will likely be lower too.
Fewer to no grocery runs
If you don’t like taking the time and effort to make grocery runs, you may find yourself needing to do so far less often when you live in an apartment with a partial or no kitchen. A partial kitchen will at most have a mini-fridge and a few cabinets, inherently limiting the amount of food you can store – and, in turn, mostly cutting grocery runs out of your life.
Kitchens can be among the messiest parts of an apartment (though bathrooms certainly give kitchens some competition in this category). When you have a partial or no kitchen, you have to contend with far fewer grease stains, stovetop and floor food scraps, and potentially food-loving pests.
More creative cooking methods
Just because you don’t have a kitchen doesn’t mean you can’t cook at all. You just have to get creative about it. Electric appliances such as slow cookers, pressure cookers, microwaves, convection ovens, and hot plates can give you plenty of cooking capacity if you use them safely. You can also make all sorts of meals in slow cookers and pressure cookers that wouldn’t be as easy in a traditional kitchen, so a partial or no kitchen can be an unexpected portal to new culinary experiences.
Cons of no kitchen or partial kitchen in an apartment
Fewer cooking options
Of course, an apartment with a partial or no kitchen gives you far fewer cooking options unless you choose to buy appliances. You thus might be limited to meal options such as salads, microwavable frozen dinners, or simple one-pot recipes such as pasta. Your favorite oven casserole recipe will have to wait until your next apartment.
Less space for food prep and storage
If you do go the salad or pasta route, you’ll still need some counter space for chopping vegetables or a sink for draining your pasta. Of course, your bathroom will have a sink, but walking all the way from your kitchen to your bathroom sink might get old quickly. And if your counter space is devoted to housing your kitchen electric appliances, your salad prep routine might prove tough.
Challenges with dishwashing
In a partial kitchen, you might have a sink, but this isn’t always the case. Without a sink, not to mention ample counter space for a dish drying rack, you might struggle to wash and dry your dishes and other food prep items. And when delivery and takeout aren’t constant options, lacking proper dishwashing abilities can be especially stifling.
Reliance on delivery and takeout
In an apartment with a partial or no kitchen, relying on delivery and takeout can become almost inevitable. While certainly convenient, delivery and takeout tend to be much more expensive than buying groceries and making your own food. If you’re considering a kitchen-less apartment primarily for budgetary reasons, you may want to consider the impact of relying too much on delivery or takeout on your finances as well.
Would you live in a kitchen-less apartment? If you’ve lived in an apartment with a partial or no kitchen, how did you make it work? Share your stories in the comments!