Raising families in high-rise spaces
As the cost of land and real estate continue to increase, more people are choosing to either rent or purchase condominium units.
Although some initially planned to stay in urban flats only temporarily, many of them would end up staying for a while, raising their kids in an urban setting. It may not be the most ideal setting particularly for a growing household, but this, for many, is their reality.
Single detached dwellings might remain the dream for the typical Filipino family. But given the rising costs of land in urban areas, condominiums can be a great substitute.
Indeed, there is a growing preference for urban homes most especially since work is predominantly based in cities and traffic, nowadays, has only gotten worse. For growing families willing to consider the alternative dream, here are some ways you can maximize living in small spaces.
Develop minimalist lifestyle
Let’s face it: small spaces can be restrictive. One cannot expect to live comfortably in condominiums if he or she hoards stuff uncontrollably.
Because of this need to compartmentalize, families living in small spaces are forced to adapt the minimal lifestyle. This means unnecessary items have to be discarded and a systemized way of storing belongings has to be set.
Living minimally can be rewarding for those who are often overwhelmed with material possessions. For those who choose to adapt this lifestyle, simple habits can make a big impact. Documents can be stored digitally. Clothes that don’t fit can be donated. Food that is bought will not be put to waste, rotting in the pantry.
By living minimally, families will eventually develop the mindset of foregoing materialism and enjoying life simply.
Make the most of amenities
The reason why some condominiums are so pricey is because of the resort-like amenities. Yet for various reasons, many residents rarely make use of the pool, the garden, the playground and other shared spaces in condominiums.
Whether you are not comfortable in sharing facilities or are just lacking the time to fully enjoy them, it would still be wise to make the most out of your building’s amenities.
For one, you are already paying for these with your monthly dues. Another reason is that these also offer opportunities for you to bond with your family a few steps away from your home. These places are a safe place to bring your kids to due to their exclusivity and professional upkeep.
You don’t have to worry about maintenance as the management will take care of it.
Family time is perhaps the most treasured benefit of city living among condominium owners. If you feel restricted inside your unit, the common spaces can offer a more open area for you to enjoy time with your loved ones.
As your family grows, allow your home to grow with you. This doesn’t necessarily mean that you acquire more condominium space over the years, although it would be nice if you can afford it.
But if you are determined to stay put in your unit, make sure it can accommodate your family’s immediate needs.
If you live with young children, make sure the windows are locked and out of reach. Protect corners of furniture to prevent accidental bumps. Eliminate potential tripping hazards by using furniture with toe kick provisions.
If you have grandparents in the unit, install grab bars and anti-slip mats in wet areas. Invest in comfortable seating to avoid pains and backaches. As your family grows, your home should also evolve to keep up with their needed lifestyles.
Despite the limits of shared spaces, getting home early to one’s loved ones is priceless especially for young families.
As Adrian Cook, a Canadian father behind the blog “5 Kids 1 Condo,” puts it, “the fact remains that I have vastly more time and energy to spend on my kids than if I had to pay for a big house and a car or waste time commuting.”
At the end of the day, the size of one’s home is not as important as the time, attention and love we shower on our loved ones. Whether you choose to live in a small unit in the city or in a large house in the country, what’s important is that you are able to build a life together as a family.
(Sources: Photo by Daria Shevtsova from Pexels; Photo by Lgh_9 from Pexels; Photo by Simon Matzinger from Pexels; Photo by Yulianto Poitier from Pexels; https://empirecommunities.com https://5kids1condo.com)
The author is a licensed architect who studied abroad and currently works for DSFN Architects. Her dream home is a spacious condominium unit in the city where she can do laundry, take care of her dog, and raise kids who aren’t afraid of crossing the street.
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