Studio or One-Bedroom Apartments- The Differences & How to Choose

by | i-Stories, Property Trend

If you’re looking for an apartment that’s on the smaller side such as studio apartments, chances are you’re planning to live alone; or maybe with a roommate. If that’s the case, one-bedroom living space is all you need; because apartment rental costs are ever-increasing. Perhaps a two-room apartment with spare rooms isn’t what you’re opting for now, to save a few hundred ringgit a month for rent.

With that said, you may have stumbled across different and smaller housing accommodation to match your needs. For instance, you’re probably considering a studio unit or a one-bedroom apartment. The problem is which one should you choose?

Before we move on to the specifics, it’s important to understand just what a studio unit and a one-bedroom apartment is. It sounds similar, but there are important distinctions that will make a huge difference for you. From there, you’ll be able to understand the difference between the two and make better decisions on which to choose.

What is a Studio Unit?

Studio Unit

A studio unit is basically a “self-contained” apartment unit where the kitchen, living area and bedroom are combined into a single space. There are no walls or separations to divide these different room sections (except for the bathroom). That typically means that studio apartments are relatively small. Well, with a smaller space means you’ll have to be more creative with storing all your things, right?

In Malaysia, the average studio unit measures around 500 square feet or less. However, the sizes may vary, and some studio units can even max out at more than 500 square feet. Although studio units are small compared to other forms of apartment layouts, they are one of the most inexpensive units to rent.

What is a One-Bedroom Apartment?

One-Bedroom Apartment

A one-bedroom apartment is also a single room living space. However, unlike a studio unit, it has a clear division between your living room, bedroom and kitchen. You’ll get a few more walls and a distinct separation of spaces. For renters who desire more space and privacy, a one-bedroom apartment offers these conveniences that will better accommodate the renters’ needs.

Generally, a one-bedroom apartment may be typically more spacious than a studio unit. The increased space makes it easier to have a few guests coming over as well. Although, it is possible that the square footage of a one-bedroom apartment won’t be significantly larger than a studio unit.

Concluding the Differences Between a Studio Apartment and a One-Bedroom Apartment

With all that was said, the three most significant differences between a studio apartment and one-bedroom apartment are crystal clear, which are size, space and pricing.

By and large, the size of a studio unit would be smaller than a one-bedroom apartment. However, it is also possible that the size of a one-bedroom apartment may not be significantly bigger, but around the same size as a studio unit. It varies according to different apartments and properties.

Also, the interior space of a studio unit is combined in a sense where the bedroom, living area and kitchen are located in a single space or room. Renters can have a view of their whole unit from wherever they are in that room. In contrast, a one-bedroom apartment offers a clearly defined space where there are specific rooms separated by walls or separations.

Lastly, the rental price for a studio unit is generally cheaper than a one-bedroom apartment. Less space at a studio unit means you don’t have to spend as much on utility bills and furniture. A one-bedroom apartment contains more rooms which indicate larger square footage (that may up the price) and more outlets for electricity. However, if you’re willing to stretch your budget for it, then why not? It depends on you!

How do I Choose Between the Two?

It’s important to note that there are no right and wrong answers in choosing between a studio unit and a one-bedroom apartment. There are no definite answers; it’s all up to your preference! To help you better understand which apartment styles suit your lifestyle and budget, here are a few tips to consider between the two units.

Studio Apartment

Studio Apartment
  • It Helps Save More Money. If you’re planning to live alone and on a tight budget, then a studio apartment might be for you. Renting a studio unit is typically cheaper than renting a bedroom apartment. With no specific rooms divided and smaller square footage, you will save on utility bills and furniture costs.
  • Less Upkeep of the Unit. Smaller living space like a studio unit also means lesser cleaning and maintenance than the usual bedroom apartment units. Smaller space also means fewer decorations and clutter since you don’t have much storage options.
  • Save on Amenities. A studio unit may be too small for extra amenities such as a washing machine. Depending on the apartment you’re going for, some places have laundry rooms where renters can use to do their laundry. You can also opt for a small fridge or cupboards to save up on space and costs.
  • Privacy. Although renting a studio unit may limit or restrict the number of guests visiting your place; it is perfect for anyone who enjoys their privacy all in a single room.
  • Limited Space. A studio unit is small, and that may cause you to run out of storage options. Almost every square footage must be thoughtfully planned to make the most out of the space. Renters may need to work around arranging their items probably to avoid any bump-ins or accidents.
  • Everything is in Sight. When you have all the rooms combined in a single space, it can get pretty messy with having everything all out in the open. That makes it harder for guests to visit as they might feel like they’re imposing on your living space. Not to mention, when you cook, you might end up filling your whole unit with a particular smell.

One-Bedroom Apartment:

  • More Space. By and large, a one-bedroom apartment has more space than the average studio unit; since the whole unit has clearly defined rooms separated by walls. With more space, renters will be able to accommodate more things and amenities as well. On top of that, more space also means being able to accommodate some guests visiting too.
  • Privacy. You don’t just get a load of privacy from living in a studio unit, but you’re also able to do the same with a one-bedroom apartment. That is because there are walls and doors between each room. If you’re staying with a roommate or a partner, both of you will be able to enjoy your own time and privacy because there is more space in the unit.
  • More In-Unit Amenities. By having a larger space that comes with a one-bedroom apartment, that means you’ll be able to have more in-unit amenities placed in your unit. Some of these amenities can include a washing machine, full-sized refrigerator, closet and other full-sized appliances. You won’t have to share the washing machines with strangers at your apartment building anymore when you have your very own.
  • More Expensive. Renting a one-bedroom apartment can be pricier than renting the average studio unit. With the increase of square footage also means an increase in the rent. Not to mention, the utility bills of a one-bedroom apartment might be slightly higher, and you may have to bear the costs of purchasing some furniture too.
  • More Upkeep of the Place. A one-bedroom apartment with larger square footage also means more space to clean and maintain. If you love having guests over, that also means having to decorate and furnish your place more often. More space also means more storage options and that can lead to more clutter if you’re not careful.

In conclusion, there is no definite answer as to whether or not you should choose a studio unit or a one-bedroom apartment. It is entirely up to you because each renter has different preferences, lifestyles, and budget that plays a role in deciding where to stay. Hence, take some time to think about what you need and what lifestyle you’re opting for to determine what’s best for you.

With all that said, if you’re looking for a studio unit or a one-bedroom apartment, or maybe you’d even like to rent your property; Rumah-i has the solution for you with their comprehensive property management services and their online rental platform to help list your property.


- Entitle ONE time rental collection service for free

- Rental collection service for free is limited to FIRST 1,000 properties which engage the service and is for pre-launch registered owners only.

- Tenancy agreement must be prepared by Rumah-i.