Living In A Shoebox Unit

Since the year 2011, Shoebox units have grabbed the spotlight in the real estate market. This has been noticed especially in countries that see a large population influx and are faced with the dilemma of accommodating a surging population while the availability of property at hand remains the same.

Shoebox units – What are they?

Shoebox units, also nicknamed “Mickey Mouse” apartments, are compact structures. In most cases, they are not larger than 500sq.ft. A boxy appearance is a distinctive feature of shoebox units. This is because of the rectilinear and orthogonal shapes they are designed and constructed in. They also feature a horizontal arrangement of windows, while others have wall-to-wall and ceiling-to-floor glass doors. They closely resemble dingbat apartments. The cost per square foot is generally higher than other apartments. However, if you calculate the overall cost you would pay for a larger apartment it works out to quite less; it comes at a very affordable price.

In constructing shoebox units, functionality is given more importance than the aesthetic appeal. They were designed to be practical housing options. This does not however mean that they do not look good or lack the luxuries of a condominium. Shoebox apartments have space constraints, but they are fully-equipped with facilities one expects at a condominium. For a monthly or annual maintenance charge, you can enjoy high-end luxuries such as swimming pool, Jacuzzi, gym etc.

Shoe box units are a popular choice with young couples and singles that do not have a budget to spend on larger residential spaces. Expatriates coming into the region also prefer this residential option given their temporary stay. They are also great for smaller families – nuclear families – that don’t have too many children. One might need to consider other alternatives, if one has pets. It works out to being a budget-friendly and decent place to stay for students and young professionals too.

How do you gain?

· From an investor’s point of view, the rental yields are good. You stand to gain more if you own a shoebox unit in the central regions than in the suburban areas.

· A smaller space means lower maintenance requirements, which is a must have for singles and couples who have long working hours and little time to invest in household chores.

· It also offers an opportunity to possess property at a lower demand of upfront cash in cities with an extremely high standard of living.

Maximizing space in your shoebox unit

In a shoebox unit, space is limited; one cannot deny it. But there are a few tips you can use to stretch the space at your disposal.

· Declutter. Get rid of all those things – pots, pans, clothing, and furniture – that are not really essential and take up unnecessary space.

· Using foldable furniture designs that can double up in their utility and functions is another smart space saving tip.

· Built in storage can really help you expand your living space. Try to fit a few shelves and racks above the door or create lofts to tuck in some of your belongings.

· Go for downsized appliances like a refrigerator that fits under the counter.

· Make your closet doors as potential storage places by hanging stuff behind it.

So, if you are wondering whether a shoe box unit will be worth your investment, it is definitely going to be.

How to Choose the Right Office Furniture for Your Workspace

When creating your office environment, you should try and reflect your views and aims as a company on the building. This means choosing furniture which suits your style – for example, a company with a very tranquil business aim and motive would try and find very relaxing colors and office furniture. It’s very important that you choose a functional and easy to look at design. When trying to decide what type of office furniture you need, you should keep some things in mind which will make the process much easier for you.


Consider the price of office furniture, how it fits in with your office in terms of color, style and size. You want to look for value – durable and thoughtfully priced – as well as the right aesthetics, though. The type of work your business undertakes will be a huge deciding factor in the type of office furniture you buy – if you are an IT company, you need cubicles with comfortable chairs and desks.

However, if you are designing a call center, you may want lots of desks with fittings for phones and computers. By the same practice, a psychologist would want a comforting, open look to the office with comfortable seating and an inviting feel. You should check online for examples of the type of furniture you will need depending on what services you are looking to offer.

However, here are some specific things to consider when trying to choose the right office furniture;

Use Space Wisely

Consider that you can really change the type of space you have for your office, especially when placing office furniture. One large, spacey room with a lot of empty space can be transformed into an office area for a group of people. Buying compact office furnishings will allow you to put in several functions in the one area, conserving space. This should be an important part of your strategy when designing your office layout.

Maximizing space to allow for as much work to be carried out as possible in the one area is a great way to raise productivity, and create a full and busy environment.

Health and Safety

With more businesses looking to find ways to maximize safety in the workplace, it’s important that you consider this when buying office furniture. Maximizing the amount of time your staff are available for work is paramount to consistent success in business. Plan ahead to find some office furnishings which are durable and stylish, but will also help promote a clean and safe work environment.

For example, you need your computer desks to be perfectly aligned with your chairs – this can cut down on repetitive strain injuries, especially in an IT environment. Making sure your office furnishings can hide away cables and other hardware is important, too. This stops any potential fire hazards or safety issues with regards to staff tripping over wiring or struggling to have a cohesive working space.

If you can consider all of the above – budget, style and safety – you can really produce a fantastic and efficient office environment, which is not only good to look at and work within, but safe and within your budget.