Maisonette Apartments: A Luxurious Blend of Townhouses and Lofts

If you're in search of upscale living as a renter, there's more to explore beyond penthouses and fancy complexes. Enter the world of maisonette apartments, where the fusion of townhouse charm and loft-style living creates...

If you're in search of upscale living as a renter, there's more to explore beyond penthouses and fancy complexes. Enter the world of maisonette apartments, where the fusion of townhouse charm and loft-style living creates a unique and luxurious experience. These apartments offer a plethora of perks that are sure to entice any discerning renter.

What is a Maisonette Apartment?

Maisonette apartments, popular in metropolitan luxury markets like New York City, are often characterized as lofts or duplexes. While most maisonettes span multiple floors, there are exceptions to the rule. These ground-floor apartments come with private, street-level entrances, setting them apart from basement or garden apartments.

Interior living-room, loft style. Maisonette a modern residential with a billiard room in the big house. Aquarium and stylized shelving for books. 3D render Image: Interior living-room, loft style. Maisonette a modern residential with a billiard room in the big house. Aquarium and stylized shelving for books. 3D render

The Benefits of Renting a Maisonette Apartment

Maisonette apartments evoke images of elegant Parisian living, and they come with some practical advantages as well. Here are a few reasons why renting a maisonette apartment might be the perfect choice for you.

Open Floor Plan

Maisonette apartments typically feature open floor plans that resemble lofts or two-story duplexes. This means you can expect high ceilings, lofted bedrooms, and a spacious layout free from restrictive barriers and closed-off rooms.

Ample Space

Traditional apartments often sacrifice space in favor of a compact floor plan that includes the essential living areas. However, maisonettes offer more room to spread out and create a personalized aesthetic. With the option to choose rooms on different floors, living in a maisonette feels more akin to residing in a cozy townhome than a standard apartment.

Enhanced Privacy

One of the most significant advantages of living in a maisonette is the privacy it affords. With private entrances directly from the street, you won't have to navigate through shared lobbies or staircases filled with nosy neighbors after a long day.

Potential Outdoor Space

While not all maisonettes come with outdoor areas, many boast two or three-story structures that often include outdoor space. You may find yourself with a patio, small yard, or shared courtyard—features that are relatively uncommon in traditional apartment complexes.

Cozy winter still life: laptop, cup of hot coffee and warm plaid on windowsill against snow landscape from outside. Image: Cozy winter still life: laptop, cup of hot coffee, and warm plaid on windowsill against snow landscape from outside.

Considerations When Renting a Maisonette Apartment

While maisonettes offer numerous advantages, it's essential to consider some potential drawbacks before making a decision.

Higher Utility Bills

The open space and high ceilings that characterize maisonettes often result in higher utility bills. Unless you reside in a mild, year-round climate, heating and cooling a maisonette can be costly. However, you can mitigate these expenses by taking proactive measures like weatherproofing windows, using draft guards, and layering extra blankets during colder months.

Potential Noise Issues

Open spaces tend to allow sound to travel more easily. To combat potential noise disruptions, you can strategically use furniture, plants, and privacy screens to redirect or absorb sound.

Higher Cost

Maisonettes are highly desirable and often larger than other apartments on the market, which naturally leads to higher rent prices. However, by sharing the space with roommates or exploring less trendy neighborhoods, you may find a more affordable option that suits your needs.

Parking Limitations

Parking can be a challenge in many cities, irrespective of the apartment type. Maisonettes, often located in dense urban areas or above commercial establishments, may have limited or no dedicated parking available. Despite this, you'll still enjoy the convenience of a private entrance.

Finding a Maisonette Apartment

If you're eager to embark on your search for a maisonette apartment, here's a guide to help you get started.

Determine Your Budget

Before diving into your apartment hunt, it's crucial to establish a budget. Renting a maisonette is not just about being able to afford it; it's about comfortably managing your finances. The 30% rule is a useful guideline. This rule advises spending no more than 30% of your pre-taxed monthly take-home pay on rent. To calculate your target rental budget, divide your annual salary by 40. For example, an annual income of $60,000 translates to a monthly rent budget of $1,500 or less.

Understand the True Cost

In addition to rent, consider other hidden apartment expenses like application fees, moving costs, move-in fees, security deposits, and pet deposits. Fixed expenses such as student loans or medical bills should also be factored into your budget. If you need assistance untangling your financial puzzle, our Rent Calculator can help you determine your expenses and affordability, ensuring you find the perfect apartment.

Set Your Priorities

Identify your apartment priorities by creating a list of needs, wants, and nice-to-haves. Determine which amenities are essential and which ones you can compromise on. Consider factors like location, neighborhood, access to public transportation, and other conveniences that matter to you.

Consider Your Commute Time

Your commute time from your apartment should play a role in deciding where to live. If you enjoy reading during your commute, a longer journey may not be an issue. Checking walk and bike scores can also help you determine the feasibility of different transportation options.

Prepare for Apartment Tours

Touring potential apartments is a crucial part of the process. Maisonettes are in high demand, so be prepared to make quick decisions. Bring along the necessary documentation like your ID, rental references, proof of income, and application fee. Familiarize yourself with the application process beforehand, so you can be confident and equipped with the right questions during the tour.

Applying for Your Maisonette Apartment

After the tour, it's time to submit your application and supporting documents. Be organized and thorough, providing any additional materials required by the landlord. If you lack rental references, consider obtaining character references from managers or supervisors who can speak to your reliability.

Protect Yourself from Rental Scams

Unfortunately, rental scams are prevalent in the market. To safeguard yourself, stay vigilant and follow our tips for avoiding rental scams. Be cautious and trust your instinct.

Young woman with laptop computer and papers working at home office. Image: Young woman with laptop computer and papers working at home office.

Maisonette Apartments: A Sophisticated Living Experience

Living in a maisonette apartment provides the perfect blend of upscale urban living, ample space, and desirable amenities. Start your apartment hunting journey and sign up with Apartment List. Our platform is designed to make the rental experience stress-free and enjoyable. Take our quiz and let us match you with the ideal apartment based on your preferences for amenities, location, and budget.

Maisonette Apartments FAQs

Is a maisonette better than a flat?

Maisonette apartments often offer more privacy compared to flats. With their private entrances and outdoor stairwells, coming and going becomes incredibly convenient for renters.

What is the difference between a flat and maisonette?

Maisonette apartments span multiple floors, feature private entrances and stairwells, while flats consist of a single level with each room on the same floor.

What is the difference between a maisonette and duplex?

While maisonettes and duplexes share similar characteristics, the term "duplex" tends to describe properties with a more modern design. They both offer the same features.

What is the difference between a maisonette and a townhouse?

Townhouses are standalone residences, typically occupied by a single family. Maisonette apartments, on the other hand, are part of a multi-unit building, occupying only a portion of the ground floor.

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