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AS_MicrowaveLiving in a one bedroom apartment or studio apartment can be a great way to save money, but there are often some tradeoffs for the reduced expenses. A common problem is the lack of a full kitchen, which can cause a lot of stress for the hungry renter. Here a few tips for how to make it work.

1. The Hot Plate

The defining aspect of any kitchen is the stove, but some small apartments may do without. An easy remedy to that situation is the purchase of a restaurant-quality hot plate. With a couple of pots, pans, and cooking utensils, the hot plate will function as a normal stove burner, allowing you to cook any of the stove-top dishes you desire. Combined with a microwave and a mini-fridge, you’ll have a scaled-down version of a kitchen with all the basic necessities.

Young Woman Under BlanketAh, the joys of living alone. Want pancakes and bacon at 2 AM? Get cookin’—you won’t wake anybody up! No need to call “dibs” on the remote—it’s always yours! Get the pet that you want, entertain guests when you want, and sing your favorite show tunes at the top of your lungs. But once the novelty wears off, living by yourself can actually be a little nerve-wracking. What if there’s an emergency and no one around to help?

Whether you have an overactive imagination or you just want to be prepared in case of a crisis, here are 5 ways to not be scared if you live alone.

Apartment Kitchen ShelvingSo you found that perfect studio apartment, the next question is: how do you fit all of your stuff into less than 400 square feet? Living in a small space certainly has its perks, like cheaper rent. However, you’ll have to get creative when it comes to storing all of your belongings. That’s where the underappreciated vertical space comes into play. Here are a few space-saving tips that utilize the vertical space in your studio apartment.

Eliminate some of your stuff

First things first, when it comes to living in tight quarters, it’s important to cut back on the things you don’t need or use very often. Items like fancy kitchen gadgets are great, but they tend to take up a lot of room. Good rule of thumb: if you haven’t used it (or worn it) in six months, take it to the nearest donation center.

Studio Apartment BedroomIf you live in a studio apartment, you know what it’s like to get creative with storage. Studio apartments can get cramped very quickly, but they don’t have to! Using storage solutions are a great way to maximize the space you do have in your apartment. Walls aren’t just for art; they can be the best vehicles for uncluttering the floor. Additionally, storage doesn’t have to be ugly. Have fun with it and you’ll make the visual dynamics of your studio apartment more interesting. Here are a few best practices when it comes to storage solutions.

Look for Multipurpose Furniture

Finding furniture that has multiple uses is key to fitting all your stuff into your small apartment. Think about the pieces of furniture that take up a lot of room, but could also provide space to store things. Look for bed frames that come with drawers or have space under them for storage bins. Furniture pieces like this are perfect for hiding out-of-season clothes or extra linens. Storage ottomans are great for packing away DVDs, extra remotes and controllers, or throw blankets.