How Big is 2,000 Square Feet?

For some people, 2,000 square feet is a ton of space, but for others, it might as well be a tiny home. It all depends on your perspective, not to mention the sheer amount of junk that you own.

Wondering whether you can cram yourself and your worldly possessions into a space of this size? Let's take a nice deep dive into how a 2,000-square-foot apartment literally measures up.

calculator and tape measure

How to calculate 2,000 square feet

First, it's pretty important to know that a square foot is just that — picture a square that is one foot on each side. So, a 2,000-square-foot apartment is 2,000 of those bad boys laid out according to floor plan. Determining the square-footage of a space is a little trickier the bigger it gets. Still, it's a useful skill and really isn't difficult once you get the hang of it.

To get started, buy or borrow a 100-foot tape measure. You know, the kind that springs back at you way too fast if you don't know what you're doing. Also, grab a calculator (or just use your phone), as well as a pen and paper.

Before you get started, wander the unit and sketch the shape of the rooms. This is where you will write down the measurements for each room as you take them. If one room is oddly shaped (like a square with a rectangular nook on one end) it's okay to split them up as if they're separate rooms.

Next, for each room, you'll need to measure the length and width. Record the measurements (in inches) on your crude drawing. Round up to the nearest inch. So, if a room is 20.6 inches long, write down 21 inches.

Once you've got all of the measurements noted, have a seat and whip out the old phone calculator. Divide each individual measurement by 12 to convert it into feet. For example, a 144-inch wide room divided by 12 inches is 12 feet. Do that for every single length and width.

Now, multiply each individual room's length in feet by its width in feet. This will give you the square footage of that room. So, a room that is 8 feet wide by 7 feet long is 56 square feet. Feel free to make someone else do the calculations and use a square footage calculator.

Follow the same process with every room in the unit. Don't forget closets and pantries! Once you have the square-footage for every room, add them all together. This will give you the final number for the whole apartment.

tennis courts

What does 2,000 square feet look like

It's tougher to visualize 2,000 square feet than a smaller unit because it's just so much bigger. Still, there are a few ways to look at it to give a better idea.

If you're a tennis player, or are simply familiar with the playable area of the court, picture that to start. A standard court is 2,800 square feet within the lined areas. So, this does not include the areas that people can still technically run around on outside the baseline. If you remove the space on one side of the court from the service line to the base line (including the alleys from that point) the remaining area is much closer to 2,000 square feet.

If that's making your head spin, picture a two-car garage. A space like that is roughly 400 square feet. So, five two-car garages is just about 2,000 square feet.

You can expect quite a bit more out of a 2,000 square-foot apartment than the average garage, however. Typically, units of this size have three or even four bedrooms, plus a kitchen, living area, walk-in closets and multiple bathrooms. Here's a great example of a floor plan for such a space at 180 Riverside Boulevard in New York City's Upper West Side.


Of course, in that area of New York City such a unit will set you back about a zillion dollars a month, but at least you know what you're working with, size-wise.

professional movers picking up couch

Tips for living in a 2,000 square foot apartment

A unit of any size comes with potential and challenges. Make life in your 2,000-square-foot apartment as seamless as possible and follow these easy tips.

Choose roommates wisely

In a unit this size, it's likely that you're sharing space with a buddy or two. No matter how much you love the person, make sure that you're compatible before signing the lease. This includes preferences on cleanliness, frequency of overnight visitors, how to split the bills and so on. Nothing makes an otherwise roomy apartment feel smaller than a bad roommate pairing.

Take your time with decorating

It's always exciting to move into a new space, but take a beat and get to know what you need and what you have to work with before splurging on new furniture. Be thorough with measurements of each piece before purchase because too much furniture can make a big space feel small and clunky.

Get professional help

A 2,000-square-foot rental is legit the size of a house, so it's probably time to let your friends and family off the hook and hire professional movers, instead. They have all of the tools and know-how to get it done quicker and without potential injury. There are plenty of budget-friendly options out there, so get multiple quotes before selecting one.

Assign a multi-functional space

Some people only dream of having 2,000 square feet to work with. Use the extra area to your advantage and assign a bedroom double or even triple-duty! For example, if you expect the occasional guest, but also love painting and yoga, turn the room into a well-appointed guest/yoga/art room!

Commit to a clutter-free environment

More space often equals more purchases because there's more room for storage. Keep it from getting out of control by purging regularly. For example, put a quarterly closet/bathroom/kitchen cleanout on the calendar and stick to it.

Another good rule of thumb is to donate a clothing item for each new one that you buy. That way, the closet doesn't get out of control full. Plus, you don't have to get more hangers. Really, it's a win/win.

2,000 square feet, an apartment odyssey

Whether you're sizing way up or scaling way back, life in a 2,000-square-foot apartment is as much of an adventure as you long for. Simply whip out the old tape measure and do some calculations to get ready for this next step in your journey.

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