How to market a tiny apartment with a toilet in the shower

At just 17sq m and with a toilet located inside the shower it’s safe to say 43/20-22 Springfield Ave, Potts Point, is not your standard apartment.

It forms part of the tiny home movement and while the selling agent, Belle Property Potts Point’s Silvia Vitale, has seen features like this before, there’s no doubt a specialised marketing plan, targeting a specific buyer is in need for a property such as this.

Ms Vitale said the first thing to consider when marketing tiny homes, is whether or not the property needs to be styled. 

“Whether you furnish it or not is sometimes a borderline situation,” she said.

“I have found, during the pandemic, that when I had furniture styling put in, it didn’t make any difference (to inquiry or results), whereas prior to the pandemic it did.

“But certainly, if you’re not putting furniture in, then virtual furniture in the photos is absolutely important.”

Ms Vitale said inquiry for the Springfield Ave apartment, which is priced at $469,000, was coming from investors and owner-occupiers in need of a pied-a-terre.

The tiny apartment has an open-plan living and kitchen area, a “sleeping nook” that measures 1.4m x 1.9m and a bathroom with the space saving toilet in the shower cubicle.

“It’s not the first time I’ve seen it, I’ve seen it in another studio, but it’s certainly space saving,” Ms Vitale said.

“I’ve heard that some boats have it as well, and does it matter if the toilet gets wet?”

43/20-22 Springfield Ave, Potts Point, has a toilet in the shower cubicle to save space.

Ms Vitale also recently sold a 19sq m apartment at 309/113-115 Macleay St, Potts Point, for $385,000, to a buyer moving back to Sydney who discovered she doesn’t need a large space but wants all of life’s amenities and services at her doorstep,

She’s also just listed a studio at 36/392 Jones St, Ultimo, for $595,000.

Ms Vitale said tiny apartments were starting to make a bit of a comeback after suffering during the pandemic when a lot of students, tourists and hospitality workers left the city and inner suburbs.

“All of a sudden we had vacancies happening everywhere and we had huge supply and low demand,” she said.

“We’ve never seen that, for years, for decades in the inner city.

“Rents came down and we lost all of the investors because the investors were looking at the return and seeing that studios were not showing a good return.”

309/113-115 Macleay St, Potts Point, sold for $385,000 and has a fold-out bed.

Ms Vitale said selling smaller properties had become a lot tougher, with banks also becoming less flexible on loans.

“It’s been a tough journey to sell a studio since March last year,” she said.

But with borders reopening things are starting to look up.

“I’m slowly seeing things change now and that is because of some of the borders opening up, especially Singapore, we can already see that people are coming in,” Ms Vitale explained.

“And I think we’re talking 200,000 people in December coming in and that’s going to make a huge difference.

“As soon as demand increases, rents will go up and the investors will be more interested.”

Fellow Belle Property Potts Point selling agent Nuri Shik said he was also looking forward to the return of investors to the small apartment market, with home owners propping up the sector in recent times.

He said he’d sold three one-bedroom apartments in recent weeks and had three more coming to market next week that he expected to sell before Christmas.

“I’m hoping that the investors will have confidence to come back because we’re selling a lot of the smaller properties to home buyers,” Mr Shik said.

“Mums and dads are helping (their children) and grandparents are helping because people can’t afford to buy the larger apartments, but they want to live close to the city so they flock to the smaller ones.

I’m getting good inquiry but they are fussy and they’re wanting particular sizes. They want over 40sq m or 50sq m.”

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Kylie Dulhunty

Kylie Dulhunty is the Deputy Editor at Elite Agent.