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Rise of Co-living Spaces: The Latest Trend in Urban Living

Blox Social
Posted on
Mar 30, 2023

Going back even a decade or so in time, students and young professionals preferred hostels, dormitories, and PG accommodation options. But the past years have changed a lot. The needs and necessities of the younger lot go far beyond basics. With technology and innovation, the need for creative spaces that can double up as a residence and office are on top of their lists. This need got a big boost from the COVID-19 pandemic, with colleges and offices going online. So, hundreds of thousands of students, young professionals, and entrepreneurs living in metro cities like Mumbai, Delhi, and Bangalore found the perfect solution – co-living spaces.

What are co-living spaces?

Co-living spaces, wildly popular in Western countries, are now making it big in India. These are essentially living facilities shared by two or more young professionals, entrepreneurs, or even students. The idea of community living is exemplified by co-living spaces that bring together like-minded people of the same generation and provide them with living and working spaces and a host of facilities that make a living here very interesting. The concept of co-living takes the rudimentary “room sharing” to a whole new level. Let us explore how these are different from PGs and hostels and how the residential landscape in urban centres is undergoing a transformation.

What sets co-living spaces apart?

Unlike traditional PG (paying guest) facilities, co-living spaces are much more than a bed, breakfast, and cupboard. Instead, they offer a host of amenities and facilities, a lifestyle that the millennials have come to expect, to demand. From IoT-powered housing systems to hybrid working spaces, from gym and fitness centres to recreation and entertainment facilities, the younger generation is looking for a whole lifestyle built into co-living spaces.

Co-living spaces can also be built to showcase shared interests and pursuits. For example, millennials passionate about environmental conservation may opt to live in a co-living space that epitomises green building practices. Co-living spaces can be furnished and explicitly managed to suit the needs of budding entrepreneurs or tech professionals or even content creators. The environment is inspiring and invigorating, making a living, socialising, and networking all possible at once.

The rise of co-living spaces

The popularity of co-living spaces has been steadily on the rise over the past few years. The COVID-19 pandemic and the subsequent lockdown have only served to make these more popular among the migrant employees of the service industry, particularly in large cities. Living in these offers distinct advantages to young professionals. Let us take a look at a few of these –

  1. Affordability – Affordability is possibly the most salient of advantages that young professionals, artists, and entrepreneurs find. Living in a residential unit with top-notch facilities can be unaffordable for those in the early stages of their career. Co-living lets them split the rental and maintenance with other like-minded professionals, resulting in huge savings.
  2. Location – Let us understand this with an example. A young media professional starting out in a production house wants to stay close to her workplace and pick up multiple shifts but rentals in Andheri, where her office is located, are rather steep. While Mumbai has an excellent public transport network, she does not like the commute. Opting for a co-living space in Andheri can save her the commute, time, and effort without adding much to her living expenses.
  3. Resources and facilities – Co-living spaces set themselves apart from regular PG or hostel-style accommodations by offering a host of facilities and amenities to the residents. Some are located in luxury projects and offer the use of a gym, sauna, fitness centres, and community halls. Others offer office-like services such as WiFi connectivity, printing, copying, and AV systems. Yet others offer health food services. While the services offered by co-living spaces may vary, there has been a marked rise in the applications and platforms offering these services. For example, over the past three years, there has been a marked rise in home-cooked food services or meal planning services to co-living spaces. These are specifically designed to cater to young professionals and their lifestyle needs.

What is in it for a real estate investor?

The typical real estate investment plan involves buying a residential property that will fetch you rental income. Alternatively, you can invest in a commercial office space or warehouse or even a showroom that can bring you income in the form of a lease or rent. Owning large residential buildings or multiple units in an upscale residential project can help you set up co-living spaces. The advantages for you as an owner include multiple tenants and multiple rents, high demand, and ease of management. Corporations are keen to tie up with co-working spaces to help new employees find housing in prominent localities of the city. This is something you may wish to explore as the owner of a co-working space.

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