Apartment size is even more of a big deal than it used to be since so many Americans are now working from home. As kitchens turn into classrooms and living rooms double as home offices, the amount of square feet you live in could have a real impact on your professional life — and on your wallet, too. That's why a lot of workers are fleeing to the suburbs.
Whether you're actively searching for a new place just outside a major metro area or may be in the market for one soon, it makes sense to maximize the amount of space you get for the amount of money you pay.
"It's important to create a separation in your household that includes a space that's dedicated to work, and then when you're off the clock and you're not thinking about work, you also have a space that you can enjoy, and you can feel like you're at home, and you can have that distance," Angelina Darrisaw, CEO and founder of C-Suite Coach, told Grow earlier this year.
RentCafé researchers analyzed the 30 most populous U.S. metropolitan areas, using data from Yardi Matrix, a commercial real estate data firm, to find the average size of apartments in large buildings of 50 or more units and in turn which suburbs offer the biggest apartments.
Rents in these suburbs are generally in line with, and in some cases lower than, rents in their cities. And in these suburbs, you get a lot more space for your money.
Johns Creek, Georgia, in the Atlanta metro area, offers an average apartment size of 1,225 square feet. Average rent in the city is $1,477 per month. In other words, you're getting an apartment that's more than twice as big as the U.S. average for about the same price.
Here are the top 5 metros with the most spacious apartments, along with their average rents.
Location: Atlanta metro
Average apartment size: 1,225 square feet
Atlanta average apartment size: 978 square feet
Average rent in Johns Creek: $1,467
Average rent in Atlanta: $1,477
Location: Miami metro
Average apartment size: 1,208 square feet
Miami average apartment size: 890 square feet
Average rent in Wellington: $1,818
Average rent in Miami: $1,703
Location: Charlotte metro
Average apartment size: 1,205 square feet
Charlotte average apartment size: 941 square feet
Average rent in Lake Wylie: $1,229
Average rent in Charlotte: $1,372
Location: Baltimore metro
Average apartment size: 1,185 square feet
Baltimore average apartment size: 825 square feet
Average rent in Pikesville: $1,384
Average rent in Baltimore: $1,268
Location: Orlando metro
Average apartment size: 1,178 square feet
Orlando average apartment size: 958 square feet
Average rent in Longwood: $1,478
Average rent in Orlando: $1,429
Experts generally recommend not spending more than 30% of your income on housing, which means if you're looking for a place in Wellington, Florida, your take-home pay would need to be around $68,000 annually. Those going to Pikesville, Maryland, on the other hand, could make nearly $20,000 less per year and still find affordable housing.
Being responsible about how you spend and save makes sense no matter where you are on the map. So if you're looking for a bigger apartment, the first step is to make space in your budget.
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