Downsizing to a studio apartment may not be the way to go for every renter. But for those who embrace the minimalist lifestyle, studio apartments mean you get more familiar with the space surrounding your apartment rather than the contents within it. It’s a nice way to get to know the area if you’re new to Chicago or have recently moved to an unfamiliar neighborhood. And don’t forget the most important thing about renting a studio apartment: you can save money on rent.
Studio apartments in downtown Chicago tend to be in high-rise buildings, meaning more modern amenities such as on-site laundry, fitness centers and retail on the ground floor. Some of the newer buildings offer really spectacular amenity spaces such as rooftop terraces, yoga rooms and sophisticated lounges that can easily function as impromptu office space thanks to high-speed WiFi.
People searching for cheap apartments in Chicago may have to look a bit further outside of downtown, where the median rental price for a studio apartment tends to be higher given the nicer amenities and newer construction. The citywide median rental price for studios listed on Domu was $1,250 in 2018.
Spending a bit less on rent in comparison to more generous apartment floor plans may put money back into renters’ pockets for other expenses, such as parking or groceries. If you can do without certain luxuries, say like having a car, then renting a studio near downtown Chicago could still work out to be a reasonable bet. Studios near downtown provide great access to public transportation as well as the best amenities the city has to offer -- most of them within walking distance. Keep in mind that the affordability index of cheap apartments in Chicago tends to go up the further you get from downtown.