Build a functional one bedroom apartment

Wednesday January 10 2018



Simon Nandala, an architectural assistant at ACQ Consortium, says these three one-bedroom units can fit on a 70X60ft plot. Estimated to cost Shs90m, each unit has a bedroom with a closet and a door that closes (along with a window), a living room area, bathroom and a kitchen.
Each house has its own balcony that is perfect for using as a living area or weekend work space for the busy professional and a parking space. Mathias Omona, an architect says this plan can also be modified for starter homes, vacation homes and visitors wings.

Unlike most squeezed one-bedroom unit layouts, this plan is designed to offer you more privacy, and more clearly demarcated space, making decorating a one-bedroom unit, even one that, at first glance, appears tiny, a far simpler task.
Although the houses are designed to be comfortable and functional residences, they can be divided neatly into two separate areas just in case you decide to turn them into multipurpose spaces for living and working in: the first part of the house can be the working space while the living and sleeping areas are off to the back.
It is perfect for young couples or singles who would like to live minimally without sacrificing the luxury of cooking at home and even entertaining guests. If you cook a lot at home, it is also nice to have the kitchen area separate from your sleeping area, so that food odours do not end up in your clothes and bed.
These separate areas make the unit less claustrophobic and affords couples a little more privacy if one of them can be, say, reading in the bedroom while the other watches TV in the living room.

Even the most expansive of one-bedroom units can be quite tricky to furnish.
Décor expert Wahab Mbabazi of Habawood International observes that there is the need to proceed cautiously while utilising the many time-tested small-space decorating ideas because there is potential for going overboard. “You can add mirrors at strategic angles which create an illusion of a bigger space, paint the walls in rich, contrasting colours to give separation and allow natural light to spill into the apartment for an airy and fresh look,” Mbabazi explains.
Living in a small space requires that you be very selective on what you bring into the home. “I usually advise my clients to go for quality over quantity. Your house is better off with a few lavish furnishings instead of too many cheap ones that end up looking like nothing more than clutter,” he elaborates.
To keep your home clutter-free, he recommends that when you bring one thing into the home, something else should be removed to create space for it.

What can go wrong?
All is not rosy though as different people living in such close proximity is bound to result in disagreement and conflict. And if those disagreements and conflicts are not handled quickly and fairly they can fester into serious problems. The most common sources of conflict between neighbors are noise and odors. Odors are usually of two varieties: cooking and smoke. The pungent waft of frying garlic, a cigarette, pipe, or cigar smoke might be heaven scent for one party but might make another ill.
Noise complaints include radios playing too loudly, noisy children, dogs, cats and of course, the too-frequent late-night parties.
Apart from prompt arbitration, consider applying acoustic dampening paint on shared walls or others forms of soundproofing to control noise.