When apartment hunting, you'll probably notice that some places you tour have full-sized kitchens and others simply have kitchenettes. The main difference between the two is the size.
Many studios or small apartments don't offer full-sized kitchens and instead have smaller kitchenettes. There are pros and cons to each depending on your lifestyle and priorities. First, let's review the key differences between the two and then decide what's best for you.
Everyone knows what a standard kitchen is, but it's important to note what it actually includes when you go apartment shopping. With a standard, full-sized apartment kitchen, you'll have a number of appliances like an oven, stove, refrigerator and possibly a microwave to cook and clean your dishes.
Most people prefer full-sized kitchens for obvious reasons. You have space, high-quality appliances and can comfortably cook and clean. Full-sized kitchens are also great to have for entertaining guests and hosting gatherings.
A kitchenette is often viewed as a "mini-kitchen" that includes just the basics. Kitchenettes are smaller in size and don't have all the bells and whistles that kitchens do.
They come into play in small apartments (especially studios) that don't have room for full-sized kitchens. Full-sized ovens and stovetops aren't typically found in kitchenettes either, which can be a big drawback for people who like to cook a lot. You might only have a microwave and space for a mini-fridge.
Kitchenettes help you save space in a smaller apartment and include the basics you need to get by. If you're not into cooking, you probably won't mind having a smaller kitchenette. They do the job and nothing more.
Depending on your lifestyle factors, you may prefer one over the other. Obviously, a full-sized kitchen is going to give you more space and resources to cook regularly. But if you live in a city and don't spend much time at home, a kitchenette might be better for you.
For example, in New York City most studio apartments have kitchenettes. This is very common to find in big cities where the apartments are notably smaller.
Think about your current lifestyle and what works best for you. Do you like to cook and have people over regularly for holidays and events? Perhaps you prefer to order Uber Eats or go out with friends most nights instead.
The way you answer these questions will determine if you should rent an apartment with a full-sized kitchen or go for the kitchenette instead. After all, the biggest difference between the two is size, so keep that in mind when you're making your decision.