Small Space Extreme in Beijing

The Beijing real estate market has shot up so fast in the last few years that many aren't able to afford living in real apartments in the city. This young professional rents a hyper-small "pod":Zhang Qi works at an advertising firm in Beijing and rents her 7 s.f. (that's right - s-e-v-e-n) for under $40 per month on a $586 per month salary. This allows her to save up money to send to her family in her hometown. The tiny space compares to the $120 rent she used to pay when splitting an apartment with a roommate.

It doesn't seem to us that the tradeoff is worth it, as she's essentially paying 1/3 of what she used to pay to live in a closet instead of splitting an apartment with a roommate. We'd stick to $600 splitting a real apartment with a roommate VS $200 in a closet any day. What say you?

Read much more at Asia Times.

A note from Regina, the author of the post (copied from below, in comments section):
I didn't intend for my input on the subject to be condescending and I regret that I came across that way. It's amazing and humbling to see Zhang Qi's small space and her sacrifice.

I shared the square footages and expenses here only as a topic of discussion with a community that's often concerned with both quality of urban life and small space living. Sharing an apartment outside of the city center and renting a "pod" right in Beijing take anywhere from 1/12 to 1/4 of this young professional's salary. It was in looking at these numbers and comparing them to my own living experience in a large urban core that I wrote this commentary.

(Image: Asia Times)

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Regina is an architect who lives with her husband and son in Lawrence, KS. As a LEED Accredited Professional and longtime contributor to Apartment Therapy and The Kitchn, her focus is on healthy, sustainable living through design.

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