San Francisco is considering joining the ranks of other US cities by adopting new minimum size requirements for city apartments.  It would join New York City and Boston as cities that offer "micro apartments", in an attempt to make more affordable housing available for a wider range of residents

City leaders are proposing reducing the minimum size for apartments from 290 square feet to 220 square feet.  That includes 150 square feet of living space, with the additional square footage allotted to the bathroom, kitchen and closet areas

The San Francisco housing market is notoriously tough, and the recent tech boom has caused many residents to be priced out the market altogether.  City leaders hope this plan will help to alleviate that problem by offering less expensive and more abundant housing options

41% of residents in San Francisco live alone, and these new micro units would be geared specifically for them.  The idea is to allow them to continue to live alone, instead of having to live with roommates or even leave town.  These units are thought to be ideal for students, artists and senior citizens.  While everyone would like to live in their own single family home or spacious apartment, the reality is that many cannot afford that in San Francisco

The micro apartments will be priced between $1,200 and $1,500 a month.  Currently, the average price for a studio apartment in San Francisco is just over $2,000

Plans are underway by a local developer to unveil a new building in November that is comprised of 300 square foot units.  The building is located in the South of Market neighborhood.  The units are designed to make the best use of the space, with window seats that turn into beds and beds that become tables.  Each unit contains a bay window with fabulous views of the city.  The developer is planning more construction with even smaller units

While these units sound wonderful, some worry that not all developers will create units with desirable features.  The concern is that most of these micro units will be dim, grim rooms with little light and low ceilings.  Opponents are calling these "shoebox homes".  Others fear that it will drive families out of town

Critics of the plan also fear that the increase in population density would be additional strain on already taxed public transportation systems and public spaces and parks.  And the price per square foot would actually be less affordable than current rates

Singapore recently upped their minimum requirements for family micro units, after noticing a congestion problem.  Their smallest family units are now 755 square feet, up from 500 square feet.  Some feel more study is needed to not end up with a problem like Singapore is facing

Not everyone is against the proposal, however.  Many feel this is a great opportunity for those with low incomes to remain in the city