Living in Micro-Home

Table of contents

Economics

Many choose living in micro-homes mainly due to economic issues. Nowadays, living in the city requires you high cost of living. As we all know, micro-living is the lower cost of living. Be it a recent college graduate, a victim of the mortgage crisis, or a retiree concerned about cost of living in old age. They will choose living in micro-homes rather than regular houses. On the commercial side, developers of micro housing apartment units clearly see an upside from adding more units in a given building footprint.

Simpler Living

There is a growing sense among many that busy and expensive lives are unsustainable at both an ecological and personal level. Many in the micro house movement come to it with a realization that happiness in their lives has never correlated with the size of the spaces they have inhabited.

Some search for a simplicity of existence, privacies for personal space, the elegant economy of form of a well design small structure and an added freedom when unshackled from unneeded rooms. Others believe that life is ‘too short to live big’- to spend more precious life energy than needed dedicated to the designing, building, financing, cleaning, furnishing, decorating, maintaining, and repairing, when we might better be loving, discovering, creating, traveling.

Affordability

The core idea for micro housing is its price tag. Living at the heart of the city affordably is only a dream to most people. Sky high prices and limited accommodation narrows down accommodation choices for many. They may choose to either commute from distant towns with cheaper rents or opt to share living spaces with a roommate or a relative. Micro housing gives the opportunity for those seeking the city lifestyle at a cost of limited spaces. Micro housing can be an attractive investment for investors with limited budgets. You can be sure that there will be a vast number of people looking for cheap accommodation.

Environmentally Friendly

The environmental footprint created per square foot is smaller than those high energy consuming buildings with few inhabitants within them due to its size and capacity. This is ideal for environmentally conscious young workers who embraces minimalism while living green in the heart of the city.

Utilizing the shared facilities with other residents, not many facilities will be required for maintenance and cost of management upkeep can be relatively low. Using green practices such as installing solar panels, rain water collection and reusing build materials procured elsewhere are some of the possible ways that highlights micro housing can be attractive.

Convenience

Having located deep in the city itself, amenities are everywhere to be found and any sort of goods or services are easily obtained. As KL was voted the 4th best city for expats in 2017, you can be confident in its diversity and offerings.

Community Oriented

Communal living offers the choice of balance between private and common space that are designed to encourage community interaction, something that is not commonly found in fast paced big city lifestyles.

Concerns

  • The Weather

Light and height are two critical factors to micro-housing. In Malaysia, light is not much of a major concern due to its all year bright summer weather. This allows the installation of solar panels on top for self-sustainable energy while high ceilings would not be a requirement given the ample sunlight during the day.

However, one major concern is the heat emitted by the scorching sun at certain times of the year. In traditional homes, proper insulation is installed in the roofs and the flow of ventilation is carefully considered. With micro housing, more test need to be conducted to foresee its feasibility from a design perspective. It is very easy for a micro home to turn into a big oven ready to bake its poor inhabitants alive.

  • Maintenance

Like regular houses, micro-home also needed to be maintained carefully and regularly to keep it in shape and free from hazardous things. This is especially important for micro housing which can quickly become a fire hazard if not keep in check since the micro-home is small in size and the fire can be spread quickly.

It is one issue to ensure inhabitants to pay their maintenance fees in time and another to keep the whole area in shape and welcoming. Micro housing will require proper planning and evaluation to keep the place in order before implementation can happen.

  • Cleanliness

For micro housing to thrive and sustain for the foreseeable future in fulfilling its core purpose, there needs to be enforcement and cooperation from all parties. This includes a high standard for cleanliness and garbage disposal, including proper recycling procedures and systems.

The affordable prices and limited spaces tend to open up opportunities for antisocial attitudes and low responsibilities turning what could have been a healthy communal living into a derelict area filled with negative social behaviours from drug abuse to crime hotspots. As if KL needs anymore crime areas to mushroom up.

If you look closely at low cost flats in the surrounding areas, many of them are poorly maintained, garbage and waste are littered on common areas such as staircases and walkways. This leads to irresponsible and the attitude that shows in the recent case of the boy who was killed by a falling chair at a PPR flat. It is really up to the residents of communal housing to uphold the standards of living in such areas.

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