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So this is why young people stay living at home.


LucyStoner
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http://www.seattletimes.com/business/real-estate/seattles-newest-apartments-prison-cell-with-no-door-for-toilet/

 

Note that this is literally freeway adjacent. The address could be 123 Interstate 5 on-ramp.

 

Makes multi-generation living seem quite reasonable.

 

My first apartment was about 1/2 mile from this building and was a giant studio with a partially walled off spot for a bed, private bath and a full kitchen. I was 17 and it was in reach with my mix of college student jobs. I lived alone. I feel fortunate to not be 18 and looking for an apartment now.

Edited by LucyStoner
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When I looked at the Zillow ad, my first thought was, "Meh, that kitchen sucks but I could make it work." Then I realized the kitchen is the shared, communal space. They couldn't have made it a little bigger and nicer? Maybe sprang for some cupboards under the sink?

 

I actually like small spaces as long as they have lots of light, so I could probably live there without losing my mind as long as it's well sound-proofed and non-smoking. I'd have to hang some kind of big curtain around the bathroom area, though. Can you buy something like Norwex in curtain sizes? :P

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Seattle just isn't worth it if that's how one lives. I'm all about tiny houses and innovate solutions but nope.

To be fair, this is geared to college students and young grads. It is walking distance from campus.

 

Still, the apartment I mentioned that I rented in college, besides being giant compared to this was also off of the freeway, 1/2 a block from a nice park, on a tree lined street and still also walking distance from campus. MIL apartment type situation. My rent then, adjusted to today's dollars, would be $550ish now. and that included most utilities and laundry was free.

 

I bet they get close to $1300 for it. Actually, I bet one of their young adult children lives there.

Edited by LucyStoner
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I'm sure there is some way to put up a movable wall to block off the toilet.

 

That's a lot of money.  I wonder how much that much space would cost in NYC though.

 

In my county, you could buy a modest house and pay that much for your mortgage.  Or even less.  :P

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When we remodeled our home, we built a good-sized bedroom (bigger than mine) for each of my kids, and a bathroom for them to share.  A main reason is that I intend to let them live here as long as they want / need to (provided they aren't jerks).  I really don't care if people get an attitude about it.  I don't think there's any great virtue in starting independent life with a ton of student debt (like I did).  I mean, I'm sure it was character building, the way the Great Depression was, but I would rather my kids build character in less expensive ways.  :P

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I note it's within walking distance of uni so maybe the tenants don't own vehicles, but what if they did? If that took the place of a single family home, I'm guessing there wasn't additional parking added.

 

I wouldn't mind a tiny space, as a single; I think it would be easy to creatively privatize bathroom space. But the cost, yowza!

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I'm sure there is some way to put up a movable wall to block off the toilet.

 

That's a lot of money. I wonder how much that much space would cost in NYC though.

 

In my county, you could buy a modest house and pay that much for your mortgage. Or even less. :P

Seattle's rental market is apparently now in the top ten nationwide cost wise. We are still a lot cheaper than NYC and SF though.

 

My friend lives nearby and is facing an $800ish rent hike, putting her smallish apartment into the mid $2000 range. She's looking to move but she doesn't drive so staying close to transit doesn't come cheap. Apparently rents are rising very fast here.

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I note it's within walking distance of uni so maybe the tenants don't own vehicles, but what if they did? If that took the place of a single family home, I'm guessing there wasn't additional parking added.

 

I wouldn't mind a tiny space, as a single; I think it would be easy to creatively privatize bathroom space. But the cost, yowza!

It's mostly people who don't own cars, that's for sure. As for the people who do own cars in that neighborhood, they usually park on the street and know that some days that means hiking home a ways, lol. The developers had to lobby hard to not have to build parking. The unit size is only legal because there's no kitchenette. I'm all but sure the home this thing replaced was not owned occupied or leased as a whole house. Most of the houses there have long been parceled into room rentals, often times not up to code or in good repair. Edited by LucyStoner
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Having rented in Boston as a student, and then moved out to a commuter town (and sort of regretted it)... It looks kind of nice for that price to me. It's kind of like a dorm room with it's own toilet. I'd for sure put up a moveable wall or something there, though. 

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Aren't there some U district apartments that are like quads?  You have a shared space, but then have your own bedroom and toilet you can lock separately?  Last time I was in Seattle, my friend showed them to me.  I believe you have to be a student to qualify?  They weren't part of any particular college, but you had to show you were a college student (I may be getting some of the facts wrong) but they were about $700.

 

My first apartment ever was in Ballard.  When I think about it now.......it was a 1 bedroom, run down, and I shared it with my college roommate.  I can't remember how much it was, I wonder if my roommate remembers.  I want to say we paid $300 each and that was back in the late 80s.

 

ETA:  I am such a ditz.  Just took a closer look, those are the apartments my friend showed me last time I was in Seattle.  I have seen these.

 

PPS:  And my roommate confirmed that the rent was between $600-$650 and those same apartments now go for close to $1800.  

Edited by DawnM
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It's similar in a way to what you'd get at a boarding house, but with individual toilets instead of shared. 

 

I understand why people don't want shared, but OTOH this sort of arrangement does make it pretty much impossible to have guests.  Even if visibility isn't an issue, smell and sound easily could be for many.  I've lived in spaces that small when I was a student, but with shared, separate bathrooms.  It was fine, plenty of space.  Especially since there were common areas.

 

But I don't think it's the small space that is so shocking, it's the price.  It's only about $100 cheaper than my mortgage on a single family dwelling with three bedrooms on a largish city lot.  I'm not in the sticks, I'm in the regional capitol of my part of the country.

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If you think of it as dorm housing plus your own bathroom, it's not so bad, space-wise. Our two-person dorm rooms in college were of similar size but no sink or bath in the rooms. We did have microwave-fridge combos included in each room, though.

 

They definitely should have closed off the bathroom a bit though, ick. And the price is about what I paid for a basement apartment in Boston in 1998 when DH and I were first married. It had a decently sized bedroom, living room, kitchen, and bathroom, laundry in the building, and unfortunately only street parking. After dorms, we thought we were living like kings. (And then when we bought our first house, it had a full basement, small yard, large kitchen, driveway, attic, three bedrooms, a walk in master bedroom closet, and 1.5 baths, and it cost less per month than our Boston apartment. We bought a chest freezer and knew we had arrived at true adulthood.)

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It's similar in a way to what you'd get at a boarding house, but with individual toilets instead of shared. 

 

I understand why people don't want shared, but OTOH this sort of arrangement does make it pretty much impossible to have guests.  Even if visibility isn't an issue, smell and sound easily could be for many.  I've lived in spaces that small when I was a student, but with shared, separate bathrooms.  It was fine, plenty of space.  Especially since there were common areas.

 

But I don't think it's the small space that is so shocking, it's the price.  It's only about $100 cheaper than my mortgage on a single family dwelling with three bedrooms on a largish city lot.  I'm not in the sticks, I'm in the regional capitol of my part of the country.

 

It's the out in the open toilet for me (yes, curtains could help, but still...).

 

Cost is definitely relative to where one wants to be.  If we opt for sailboat living, we'll be paying about the same for small living quarters, but we'll have a small kitchen and separate bathroom.  Guests might be cramped, but there's still privacy.

 

That said, no one is being forced to live there.  It's optional if folks want it.  I wouldn't.  There are plenty of other decent places to live in the world that offer more for the same or less cost.  If someone wants that area on a budget, they can consider it.

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It's the out in the open toilet for me (yes, curtains could help, but still...).

 

Cost is definitely relative to where one wants to be.  If we opt for sailboat living, we'll be paying about the same for small living quarters, but we'll have a small kitchen and separate bathroom.  Guests might be cramped, but there's still privacy.

 

That said, no one is being forced to live there.  It's optional if folks want it.  I wouldn't.  There are plenty of other decent places to live in the world that offer more for the same or less cost.  If someone wants that area on a budget, they can consider it.

 

Same here.  The small size...meh.  Toilet in the open...NO...no thank you.  That really IS like a prison.

 

And $700!  Must be an insanely expensive area.

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Same here.  The small size...meh.  Toilet in the open...NO...no thank you.  That really IS like a prison.

 

And $700!  Must be an insanely expensive area.

 

Now I'm wondering how much taxpayers are paying for rent (for the occupants) on prison cells...  :lol:

 

Of course, they have quite a few more "doormen" and kitchen staff they have to pay with those accommodations.  There probably aren't any with the prison-like apts - just basic common area maintenance.

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There is a lack of affordable housing here too. Basically the taxes on a starter home are 500 a month, and there is no new zoning for dense housing due to lack of infrastructure. So, we are looking like the Bay Area with folks parking on lawns as the poor displaced from the cities live one family to a bedroom and the elderly live in their garage and rent their house out ( lucrative as they have a 50% senior exemption on the property taxes). Students arent living at home, but they are finding relatives with empty nests and exchanging chores for rent. The existi g trailer parks are being converted into very expensive townhomes for groups moving out of NYC.

Edited by Heigh Ho
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It's the out in the open toilet for me (yes, curtains could help, but still...).

 

Cost is definitely relative to where one wants to be.  If we opt for sailboat living, we'll be paying about the same for small living quarters, but we'll have a small kitchen and separate bathroom.  Guests might be cramped, but there's still privacy.

 

That said, no one is being forced to live there.  It's optional if folks want it.  I wouldn't.  There are plenty of other decent places to live in the world that offer more for the same or less cost.  If someone wants that area on a budget, they can consider it.

 

Yes and no.  People can get really shafted wen housing policy is poorly managed.  You can end up with a lot of jobs being concentrated in these areas where there is poor housing.  It can get bad enough that people end up in what are really slums, and it isn't just that they are all unwilling to move - often they can't get work that will allow them to move. 

 

And it is really bad for people who are actually from that place - their whole family is there, they may have responsibilities to them, and moving away from family creates its own stresses and costs that aren't good for people either.  Stable communities are important to quality of life. 

 

And really - there is something wrong when somehow property values are pushed up in such a way that many people who have built those communities and are contributing members are entirely pushed out for people who can afford extreme real estate.  If an apartment like that is $750, where would a family live? 

It isn't good for the cities either, if you look at the pattern in places like London, NYC, or Vancouver.  They end up hollowed out, with workers commuting long distances from the fringes, and these wealthy neighbourhoods where people are often transient, or not that integrated, or live elsewhere.  It puts a lot of pressure on car related infrastructure, and other social services, as well.

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Now I'm wondering how much taxpayers are paying for rent (for the occupants) on prison cells...  :lol:

 

Of course, they have quite a few more "doormen" and kitchen staff they have to pay with those accommodations.  There probably aren't any with the prison-like apts - just basic common area maintenance.

 

Yeah, no kidding.  Maybe they could open this up to outsiders looking for a good rate.  LOL 

 

I was thinking back to what I paid for my first apartment.  That was 17 years ago.  It was $550 (in an area that while not insanely expensive was not exactly inexpensive either).  That included heat.  I had a bedroom, living room, kitchen, and bonus room (size of a bedroom but didn't have a window so it couldn't officially be called a bedroom).  The bathroom was large enough to put in a full size washer and dryer. 

 

And our house now is a 2 family (we live in the whole thing).  The rooms are small, but we have three floors of living space and three bathrooms.  Our mortgage is under $750 (that includes insurance, tax, water, and trash as well). 

 

The idea of paying $700 for a prison cell isn't so fun.

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My ds is living in 150 sq ft with another person! His toilet is down the hall, and until May has a two burners down the hall for 10 rooms. Oh, and he has a shower down the hall too. He loses the two burners this spring. He looks at as being nicer than living in his car, which he did last year. They're each paying $400.

Cheaper than keeping the heat on in a camper?
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Same here.  The small size...meh.  Toilet in the open...NO...no thank you.  That really IS like a prison.

 

And $700!  Must be an insanely expensive area.

 

It's definitely the toilet that squicks me out.

 

One of the times we moved, we were looking at a single family home to rent where the house itself was really small.  It was on a gorgeous piece of property though, with plenty of room (and permission) for all the gardening I wanted, so as I was walking through this small home with narrow, steep stairs, I kept thinking about the outside space and trying to find the possibilities in this home.

 

And then we walked into the master bedroom.  Where there was a toilet and a tiny sink in a niche in the wall. No door- no space for a door, though they did try to hang a curtain.  It was SO close to the only space in the room where a bed would fit.  I was absolutely horrified, and we never looked back.  

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The quad that my son lives in is a shared bedroom that is 12x14 so while he has a room mate, they have a little more space to work with. The bathroom that the boys share has private toilet, large shower, and dual sink with storage. They have a community kitchen that is well stocked with pots, pans, etc. and even some herbs/spices, and huge lounge/living room area on each floor plus a larger one for the whole dorm. They have huge windows so it is bright inside, and a very large shared closet. It is a better dorm room than I had back in the day.

 

And the meal plan.

 

So for the last week of Aug. to Christmas (and though home on break, he doesn't have to move his stuff out), and January through the end of April so eight months, it is $9500.00 and includes 15 meals per week in the dining commons plus lots of free dorm activities, movies, games, etc. mail delivery without post office box rental, and all utilities.

 

At $700.00 a month for the above it isn't a better deal because the individual not only lives with toilet spray on all his/her belongings, but no meals included, no activities, and likely still has to provide cooking ware as well. It looked to me like the communal areas are smaller than the ones on ds's dorm floor but for the same number of people, maybe more. Thus more crowded. It leads me to believe that unless the dorm plan at the university is much more expensive than ds's, the above micro-apartment thingy is not a better situation. The other issue at play to is financial aid and merit aid. For lower income students, tuition grant, financial aid, federal loans, and merit aid can be used to cover dorm costs but in many instances not to cover off campus housing. My guess is that the above thing is more for low income, single wage earners who aren't in college and do not have the means to move to a lower COL while they bide their time hoping for a better job, better wages.  Sad that such a piddly space costs so much.

 

Personally, I would much rather have my young adults home while they save money to get out on their own into better fixings than that.

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there's a shortage of student housing in the neighborhood and the state's flagship university and university medical center is nearby so I don't doubt it's geared to students. They said the lot sold for 2.8 million. They paid that because they have the student market to ensure they rent out all the units.

 

There's been tiny apartments in the area for awhile but the older ones (which were new 5-15 years ago) generally offer a private bathroom and a much better shared kitchen situation.

 

I have friends for whom a tiny kitchenless apartments work but it's basically a place to lock up their stuff...they are working long hours and eating out most meals. None of them would be willing to go for the open bathroom thing though.

Edited by LucyStoner
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One thing I noticed is that there is no storage. No closet, no built ins, no cabinetry whatsoever. There's not even a spot to tuck away a few cleaning supplies to keep that sink, toilet and tub clean. With the little floor space, there's not much room to add free standing storage either.

Edited by LucyStoner
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Current advertised rent in my city is $2200 for a 706sqft studio apartment and my city's rents are already lower than neighbouring cities. Typically three young working adults would share.

 

If it is a choice between a common toilet down the hallway versus an open toilet in my own unit, I'll take the open toilet and just install office cubicle type partition walls. I am a night owl even in college. Going to the hostel bathroom down the hallway at 1am was kind of wind chill cold.

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Yes and no.  People can get really shafted wen housing policy is poorly managed.  You can end up with a lot of jobs being concentrated in these areas where there is poor housing.  It can get bad enough that people end up in what are really slums, and it isn't just that they are all unwilling to move - often they can't get work that will allow them to move. 

 

And it is really bad for people who are actually from that place - their whole family is there, they may have responsibilities to them, and moving away from family creates its own stresses and costs that aren't good for people either.  Stable communities are important to quality of life. 

 

And really - there is something wrong when somehow property values are pushed up in such a way that many people who have built those communities and are contributing members are entirely pushed out for people who can afford extreme real estate.  If an apartment like that is $750, where would a family live? 

It isn't good for the cities either, if you look at the pattern in places like London, NYC, or Vancouver.  They end up hollowed out, with workers commuting long distances from the fringes, and these wealthy neighbourhoods where people are often transient, or not that integrated, or live elsewhere.  It puts a lot of pressure on car related infrastructure, and other social services, as well.

 

I don't know about this city, but I am aware of some parts of the country (Palo Alto, I'm looking at you...) where investors--many of them overseas--are buying up real estate and letting it sit vacant just waiting to sale at some future point when it has appreciated. 

 

That is a trend that I find very disturbing...

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The shock over an open bathroom is quite interesting to me. Folks used to keep chamber pots in their bedrooms--was that shocking? Parts of the world still commonly use open style public toilets--the kind without dividers between seats or holes in the ground or a common trench or whatever works.

 

Maybe I'm jaded after years of zero privacy in the bathroom because of young children, but toileting just doesn't feel to me like something that absolutely has to be reserved for an enclosed stall all its own. No I wouldn't sit on the toilet in public in an culture where that was not socially acceptable, but in the privacy of my own bedroom? Even the germ thing--if it's my personal toilet it's got only my personal germs. I'm not going to catch someone's super bug from toilet spray.

 

I'm just assuming that folks who rent these rooms aren't planning on significant entertaining there.

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The shock over an open bathroom is quite interesting to me. Folks used to keep chamber pots in their bedrooms--was that shocking? Parts of the world still commonly use open style public toilets--the kind without dividers between seats or holes in the ground or a common trench or whatever works.

 

Maybe I'm jaded after years of zero privacy in the bathroom because of young children, but toileting just doesn't feel to me like something that absolutely has to be reserved for an enclosed stall all its own. No I wouldn't sit on the toilet in public in an culture where that was not socially acceptable, but in the privacy of my own bedroom? Even the germ thing--if it's my personal toilet it's got only my personal germs. I'm not going to catch someone's super bug from toilet spray.

 

I'm just assuming that folks who rent these rooms aren't planning on significant entertaining there.

 

I would be less put out if it was a bedroom.  I actually like the bath in a bedroom idea, if the room is big enough, and I think little sinks in a bedroom are great in a busy place.

 

I think a lot of westerners today couldn't poop in a semi-public setting though - its would just violate their deepest sense of privacy.  ETA - I actually struggled with this in the dorm toilets with stalls.

 

But wen I lived as a student, it was pretty common to have people visit in dorm rooms, even though there were a lot of common areas.  So that is what I was picturing. 

Edited by Bluegoat
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It really doesn't look that bad to me.   It isn't meant for two people.    Since I'd be alone, the toilet in the same room wouldn't be a problem.  I'd just be extra diligent about closing the lid before flushing.   

I'd have picked something like this over what the dorms were like when I was in college, i.e. shared room with communal bathroom and no kitchen.  

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Holy cow.  I don't pay that much a month on my mortgage!  Yay for low cost of living in rednecksville...

 

I was thinking the same thing.  I left the more expensive city and with the help of my folks bought this house out in a rural town.  My mortgage, insurance payment and amount I set aside for property taxes each month together cost less than what they are charging for rent on that small place. 

 

I will never begrudge our single bathroom again, at least it is a separate room with a door that closes and locks lol

 

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Doesn't look too bad for a college student or young single person just starting out.  I'd stick a curtain up to block the bathroom, or some other kind of divider, maybe get a microwave to do some cooking in the room.  With the right furniture, it wouldn't be awful.

 

Shortly after my divorce I rented a 450 square foot house for $750/month which did not include any utilities.  I lived there with my oldest for about 6 months.   After that we rented a 2 bedroom garden apartment that was about 950 square feet with utilities included for $965/month.  That was over 12 years ago.  Now the 1 bedrooms that are about 700 square feet start at $1085 so prices have definitely gone up.    I'm in a HCOL area but both those places were in a lower cost area for the state (an hour-long, lousy traffic-filled commute away from the majority of decent jobs).

 

It's part of the reason why I try to be thankful for our small, somewhat crappy but in a good area near jobs, house.  We'd have a hard time renting something in this area for less than our mortgage, without increasing dh's commute 10x.  

 

Life is full of trade-offs.

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It seems expensive to us that don't live in high COL areas.   But it is 38% less than the average studio.  So, someone could get a studio with a roommate for $607 each, or this place for $750 and live alone.  I'd much rather live alone.  I dated a guy in college that paid $100 month to live in a walk-in closet of an apartment with a bunch of other guys.   He was quite happy with the choice.  

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Doesn't look too bad for a college student or young single person just starting out. I'd stick a curtain up to block the bathroom, or some other kind of divider, maybe get a microwave to do some cooking in the room. With the right furniture, it wouldn't be awful.

Apparently most of these places have a no microwave/no hot plate clause in the lease. I'm sure people violate that all the time though.

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Apparently most of these places have a no microwave/no hot plate clause in the lease. I'm sure people violate that all the time though.

 

That would probably be the deal-breaker for me unless I was in a situation where I was never there for meals.  I hate cooking.  I'd hate cooking in a space shared with people I don't know even more.  But I can do amazing things with a microwave.  :001_rolleyes:

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That would probably be the deal-breaker for me unless I was in a situation where I was never there for meals.  I hate cooking.  I'd hate cooking in a space shared with people I don't know even more.  But I can do amazing things with a microwave.  :001_rolleyes:

 

You'd think you'd at least be wanting to make tea or a hot chocolate.

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