Transformers: 7 apartments with creative multi-functional spaces

  • Vlad Mishin's transformer apartment in Russia divides one apartment into two spaces, but opens up to reconnect the living room and bedroom. // Vlad Mishin

    Big city living is getting more popular, more expensive and much smaller.

    Urban-dwellers today pay a lot more for a lot less. In Manhattan, the price of a 400-square-foot apartment ranges from $200,000 to more than $1 million. To rent a similar space, you'll pay well over $2,000 a month. Across the country in San Francisco, a 400-square-foot condo will cost you at least $300,000 on average and rental costs hit similar levels as New York City.

    These kind of rising costs are forcing more and more people to squeeze themselves into apartments that barely have enough room for a bed alongside the kitchen and bathroom. Micro-apartment proposals are popping up everywhere from Seattle to Chicago to Atlanta, with hopes of offering affordable housing, with albeit very little room.

    But that doesn't mean renters and owners of these tiny units are happy to settle for small. They're maximizing their micro-pads by creating multi-functional furniture and transforming spaces that convert a living room into a dining room into a bedroom with ease.

    To see the creative ways these folks are transforming spaces around the world, click on.

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    Ilyce R. Glink is an award-winning, nationally-syndicated columnist, best-selling book author and founder of Best Money Moves, an employee benefit program that helps reduce financial stress. She also owns, where readers can find real estate and personal finance resources.