G-Suite, a Hong Kong developer is marketing so called 'microflats' to students in Chester">ManChester. The 'micro flats' - more common in cities with severe excess demand for accommodation such as Hong Kong, San Francisco, Tokyo and New York - are tiny compared with more typical accommodation in Chester">ManChester. Some of the compact studios offer inhabitants little over 18 square metres of floor space to reside.
The developer is betting its chips on the fact that students would rather have quality over quantity, and would therefore favour premium shoeboxes over more typical terrace housing.
The studio flats based in Oldham, a neighboring town to Chester">ManChester, are connected to Chester">ManChester via a newly constructed tram link that opened in 2013 that offers residence with 20 minute commute times.
G-Suite has capitalised on the lower than national average house prices in Oldham; the former mill town saw heavy declines in property values during the 2008 crisis and prices have been slow to recover.
The flats, at between 18 square metres and 35 square metres, are being sold to Chinese and Hong Kong-based investors who believe they can get a steady rental stream from tenants.