64 sq ft home is all it takes to feel safe and comfortable and “it works”

Many years ago, a friend told me that she was going to go to Singapore to work. I asked her many questions and one of the questions were about her accommodation. She said she will get a room in Singapore for SGD300 (RM931) per month. I asked why so cheap because typical room rental is SGD600 (RM1,863) or higher. She said she will share the room with someone else.

I wish her the best but I also tell her that when I was a student, I am okay to share a room. However, when I started working, I prefer to have the room to myself and if possible, a unit to myself instead. Anyway, that’s just me. Maybe majority prefer to share a room with others even after they started working?

As I have shared many times, a home or we can call it a shelter is a basic need. Not many people want to sleep by on the 5-foot walk way or under bridge for example. This is the same whether in Malaysia (26th largest trading nations in the world) or the world’s largest economy, America. Americans also do not want to live on the streets if they have a choice.

Article in nst.com.my Miniature prefab homes have been built in a parking lot Los Angeles. This is one of a few sites where “tiny homes” are being put up to help homeless get back on their feet. In the Tarzana neighborhood, 76 tiny homes paid for by the city have been erected. Each is 64 square feet (six square meters), and is equipped with two beds and shelving as well as air conditioning and heating.

Each one of the “tiny home” costs $6,500 and can be set up in just 90 minutes. Toilets and showers are shared, and state-of-the-art washing machines face large, bright orange tables under umbrellas. Zuri-Kinshasa Maria Terry, 46, has just moved into the Tarzana development. She said, “It was the scariest thing in the freaking world to be out there.”

A view of housing units at the Tarzana Tiny Home Village which offers temporary housing for homeless people. -- AFP
A view of housing units at the Tarzana Tiny Home Village which offers temporary housing for homeless people. — AFP

To read the full article with even more details, please click here to read: Article in nst.com.my

We can debate until the cow comes home on home ownership but fundamentally it is a need

A place to stay should be made simple and available to all those who need one. Looking at the condition and the size, I doubt anyone would think of this as a long term solution. However, this is definitely a better solution than to sleep on the streets or on a bench somewhere in a city with expensive homes.

For all the ones who could afford to buy one, then please do buy one. One major reason why people remain poor forever is because when they do not own a place, they pay for the place forever. RM1,000 rental per month? It’s not high for some people but it’s a big number when we have to pay for it for 30 years and when we retire, the children has to pay for it for the next 30 years.

RM1,000 x 12 months x 30 years = RM360,000 (that’s until the person retires and assumes that rental remains unchanged)

RM1,000 x 12 months x 30 years = RM360,000 (that’s the next generation, the children who would have to continue paying so that the family could continue staying)

Please do not let this situation continue perpetually. THINK before we spend everything we earn and STOP thinking that renting is cheaper than buying if that’s what some personal finance “experts” are advocating.

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