What is a Studio Apartment Anyway?

If you’ve been thinking about getting your own apartment, you’ve probably seen that there are many varied types of apartments available on the market.  It’s easy to get confused when trying to figure out the differences between all of the myriad of terms used to describe the various types out there.  The most popular types of apartments out there are the one bedroom apartment and the studio apartment.  Unfortunately, these terms tend to be used interchangeably.  But there’s definitely a difference, and it’s very important that you understand the general meaning of these two types of apartments in order to determine which one is right for you.  So, what is a studio apartment anyway?

Typical Studio Apartment Layout
Typical Studio Apartment Layout

What is a Studio Apartment?

By definition, a studio apartment is a small apartment that combines the living room, dining room, bedroom, and kitchen into a single room.  The bathroom is usually the only other room in the apartment.  There are some exceptions to this rule, of course.  Sometimes the kitchen facilities will be located in a small separate room – it just depends on how each particular apartment was designed.  Most studio apartments range in size around 500 to 600 square feet in the US, but can be even smaller in other parts of the world.  Other common names for a studio apartment are “efficiency apartment”, “bachelor apartment”, or just a “studio flat”.


Typical One Bedroom Apartment Layout
Typical One Bedroom Apartment Layout

What is a One Bedroom Apartment?

A one bedroom apartment (or just “single apartment”) consists of a bedroom, a kitchen, a living room and a bathroom.  While most studio apartments have only two physical rooms, a one bedroom apartment typically has four.  They can also have a balcony, a fireplace, or even a small yard – which of course vary from apartment to apartment.  These extra rooms usually mean more square-footage for the occupant over that of the smaller studio apartment.  The average size of a one bedroom apartment is between 900 and 1000 square feet.


So which one should I choose?

Now that we’ve gotten the basics out of the way, let’s dive into some specific differences in how one lives in these two types of apartments.  Here are some pros and cons of each:

Studio Apartment


  1. Rent and utilities are generally less
  2. The one single large space can be made to seem more open, or more cozy, depending on your furniture layout.
  3. Speaking of furniture, you won’t need as much in a studio apartment, thus saving you even more money


  1. If you’re the type that likes having lots of stuff, this might not be for you.  Storage is one of the limiting factors in a studio apartment.
  2. If you have frequent guests, you’ll have to be a bit tidier with your sleeping area since it’s also in your living area.
  3. You will most likely not have a separate closet, which will require placing all clothes in a dresser or some sort of clothing rack.

One Bedroom Apartment


  1. With the extra rooms, you’ll have more room to spread out.
  2. If you’re the messy bedroom type, you only have to close the bedroom door when an unexpected guest comes over.
  3. And if you have guests that need to stay over, you’ll have enough room/privacy to allow everyone to feel comfortable.


  1. Rent and utilities will generally be more expensive.
  2. More space will require (possibly) more furniture – unless you’re a minimalist, then this might not be an issue.
  3. You’ll have more space to try to keep clean.

The Decision is Yours

Ultimately, the decision of which one you’ll choose frequently comes down to two factors – money and lifestyle.  Studio apartments definitely require a smaller outlay of funds for both month-to-month expenses and for furnishings.  But they also require some sacrifices that may not be required in a one bedroom apartment.  So take a really good look at your current lifestyle before determining which type of apartment is best for you.  And if you choose a studio apartment, please visit these articles to help you get the most out of your new living abode.

Get the Most Out of a Tiny Studio Kitchen

5 Cool Room Divider Ideas for a Hip Studio Apartment

9 Furniture Ideas to Conquer Your Studio Apartment

Easily Maximize Space in Your Studio Apartment

By Jerry Bickham

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