Bleats

Boomer Architect Reckons Millennials Should Abstain From Their Avocado Toast In Living Room-less Micro-Flats

Apparently we have too many "standards" for housing and that's why there's a housing crisis, says some old guy who wants you to live in a "patch"-sized studio and definitely has a living room.

Exhibit XYZDGJLGhdbsvbd in the never-ending list of Reasons Why Entitled Millennials Are Ruining Everything By Expecting To Actually Enjoy Their Lives For One Damn Second is this paper by German architect Patrik Schumacher, in which he says that the standards for what counts as a “room” and a “dwelling” are, like, way harsh, and also millennials don’t need living rooms.

This f**king guy reckons that we don’t need anything so sprawling as the 38 square metres currently mandated as the minimum size on new flats in London!

Apparently “a small, clean, private hotel room-sized central patch serves their needs perfectly well”.

 

Oh, thank you, kind sir! Here I was, thinking that living in a space where I can’t smell the toilet from the kitchen was the bare f**king minimum I could expect, but now I discover it’s actually a luxury, and I should be looking for a “patch” instead of a dwelling.

In NSW, the average studio flat is around 38m/sq, and new-build studios must be at least 35m/sq. Here are a couple of carefully renovated apartments around 38m/sq, so you can see what the smallest legal size looks like when you have a whole bunch of money for an ingenious structural renovation that turns your flat into a TARDIS.

Just like our fave Disney characters! (Without the phenomenal cosmic power.)

Schumacher says that a “patch” is all we need because “young professionals are out and about networking 24/7”.

And what’s more, centrally-located “patches” should be “allocated” to people “whose productive lives are most enhanced by being thus positioned, i.e. those who operate at the centre of our network society, attending early morning meetings, after work networking events, weekend conferences, and professional lectures”.

Totally me, going to Professional Events.

It’s true. I, a young professional, LOVE to network 24/7!

I am definitely never at home, watching Netflix in the one communal room while I eat on the couch because we had to choose between that space being the living room or having a table and chairs in it, or making economical toast-based meals in the falling-apart kitchen or working on my side hustles while I wait for one of my three housemates to finish using our one bathroom.

FYI: THIS is why my writing is total shit, Facebook commenters!

Also, there are no millennial tradies, nurses, teachers, chefs or garbos who have early starts or work late for reasons that aren’t sponsored by LinkedIn! And if there were, they wouldn’t need affordable housing in the inner city anyway because there are no hospitals, building sites, schools, kitchens or garbage there!

This f**king guy. (Born 1961, for those of you playing Boomer BS Bingo from the comfort of your inadequate homes.)

I mean, the paper is titled “Only Capitalism Can Solve The Housing Crisis”, so I’m not sure what we expected.

Yes, actually I am. It’s this patronising supervillain BS: “Many people who don’t understand how markets work seem afraid that the liberalisation of standards implies that people are then ‘forced’ to live in ‘rabbit hutches’.”

“I will be VERY comfortable in here” – Ancient millennial house-hunting proverb.

 

Yeah. Because landlords and property developers can absolutely be trusted to build and maintain habitable living spaces without proper regulation and oversight. They would never, say, turn half a living room into an extra bedroom with a plasterboard “wall”, or neglect to pursue basic repairs, or build studio flats with the toilet in the f**king kitchen.

So, to recap: boomers reckon young people should save money to enter the housing market by eating at home instead of eating out all the time, but also don’t need big apartments because they’re out all the time, so all we need is a studio with a murphy bed and a microwave, and also stop complaining and let the market take care of everything because capitalism has worked great for you so far.

https://twitter.com/kennethn/status/895036508163276801

But joke’s on him, as clearly he doesn’t know anything about millennials’ home lives. We actually spend the night hanging upside down like bats, dreaming of capitalist institutions that we are yet to destroy and disrupt – so we don’t need horizontal space for sleeping! We just use those areas to curate and photograph our Instagram flatlays of the smoothie bowls we eat to try and compensate for living in black mould-infested, ventilation-free terraces a mere hour’s commute from our insecure jobs making socialist memes as dank as our kitchen cupboards, and then to come home and watch our favourite comedies, dramas and sci-fi TV shows that are all about the end of civilisation for some reason.

God forbid we want to both own and sit on a f**king couch.

The worst housemate of all time (and also a can’t-look-away true-crime story)

Your flattie who trims their pubes in the bathroom sink is bush-league compared to “Jed”.

Housemate problems are evergreen. Just last night my flatmates and I had a tough conversation where we had to ask someone to move out, as we wanted different things out of a sharehouse – we’re after someone who understands that you have to put the dirties in the dishwasher after you unpack the clean stuff, whereas she wanted a house where she could projectile-vomit her hangover on every surface in the bathroom and somebody else would mop it up for her and then bring her a Gatorade.

But on the bus this morning I gained a whole lot of perspective, thanks to a New York Magazine feature that starts out as a pretty top-tier roomie horror story and turns into the wildest true-crime read of the year. If you were addicted to the Dirty John podcast, wait til you meet Creepy Jed, the world’s scariest – and most advanced – squatter.

The story starts with a Craigslist ad for a spare room in Alex Miller’s Philadelphia apartment, answered by a tall, handsome lawyer called “Jed Creek” who needs a room urgently while he looks after his sick mother. He has a dog and a cat, seems to be a man of the world – he’s lived in Europe! – and says he’s sick of “flaky” people. He and Miller talk for ages, and it turns out he can move in immediately – a bit sudden, sure, but his first rent cheque clears, and everything seems fine.

After a while, though, it starts to get weird: he nitpicks bills, steals lightbulbs out of the living room lights, withholds rent over a minor issue, and starts peppering their arguments with property-lawyer phrases. Then Miller’s mum Googles him, and they start to panic. His real name is Jamison Bachman, and he’s done this before – over a dozen times, “up and down the East Coast”.

Improper dairy storage and guitar practice in common areas are the least of your worries. Source: YouTube

The most terrifying thing about Bachman’s highly refined tenancy scam technique – apart from his habit of settling in normally and then beginning to do little things just to creep out his new flatmates –is how he gradually gets himself into a position where it’s really tough for him to be kicked out. In many US states, as well as in Australia, a flatmate who’s not on the lease doesn’t necessarily have much in the way of legal protection, but they don’t have legal obligations either. If you’re on the lease and your housemate isn’t, they’re technically subletting their room from you, and you’re ultimately responsible. If they’re refusing to pay their half of the rent, you can still be kicked out by the landlord; you could also be evicted for having a sub-tenant without permission.

You’d hope that if you ask someone to leave, they wouldn’t want to stay with you anyway, and would leave as soon as they find somewhere else. In NSW, if you have a written agreement with someone who’s not on the lease, they get 90 days’ notice, so you could have three more months of misery; if you only have a verbal agreement, well, you’re in a very grey area, so maybe make friends with some very burly security guards. And if you don’t feel safe around someone who lives in your house, make sure you tell someone, and have backup and potentially somewhere else to stay when you need to confront them about leaving.

In the meantime, have a read of the full story of the worst roommate ever. It’s pretty much guaranteed to go viral – and is also a great ice-breaker if you need to casually ask to your flatmate not to let their bananas rot in the pantry until they liquefy.

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