Home Tour: A Minimalist One-Bedroom Condo Maximises Space with a Multipurpose Loft
Despite having a limited floor size of 495 sqft, the couple decided to go ahead with the purchase of this resale one-bedroom condo because they were attracted to its central location. To make the apartment work for them and their lifestyle, Fu Aun and Li Sha expanded its square footage vertically by building a loft, taking advantage of the space’s 3-metre-high ceiling.
The couple went the DIY route for their home renovation as they did not have the extra budget to engage one. Everything from the design to doing up a scale model to selecting the materials, they did themselves. They only engaged a carpenter to help with the construction. Because it needed to be done in such a small space, precision was extremely crucial. Thankfully, with both of them from the engineering field, this was undertaken with much gusto.
The condo was in a relatively good condition when they bought it, so funds were channelled instead to the construction of the loft, with the rest of the home kept in its original condition. The renovation costed them a total of $17,000.
The loft needed to be practical as well as visually pleasing since it was to be located at a key area of the home—the living room. Fu Aun and Li Sha planned for lots of storage and made room for a private space where they could retreat to either to relax or to do work. As frequent hosts, the couple also wanted room for their guests should any of them decide to stay over.
All these were embodied in the entire loft built. It features an open area at the top big enough to accommodate a queen-sized mattress or futon for overnight visitors. When not used as a sleeping area, it serves as a cosy nook or a workspace with the safety barrier doubling as a desk. At the back, a small window opening was carved out and replaced with an acrylic panel so that light can flow throughout the entire home.
Rather than employ the stairs leading up the loft as conventional under-stairs storage, they were further widened at the side to accommodate the couple’s wardrobe. Clad in full-height mirror panels, it adds a level of grandeur to the space, juxtaposing against the unvarnished wood—a mix of birch plywood and glulam—seen in the rest of the construction.
The structure was extended all the way to the end of the apartment, forming the TV cabinet while providing plenty of room for storage. To minimise re-wiring of electrical outlets, Fu Aun and Li Sha had the carpentry built around existing power points with bespoke cut-outs to ensure continued access and usability.
Storage compartments were constructed in a variety of sizes for greater flexibility. The middle compartment stows away moveable benches that can be used as a coffee table or as extra seating for guests. A part of the console was also deliberately left void, which serves as legroom when the area is turned into a home office.
It took a whopping four months (most of the work had to be done during after-work hours) to complete the project from start to finish, but seeing as there was nothing Fu Aun and Li Sha wanted to change about their home, the long journey was well worth it.
All photos are courtesy of the homeowners