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Co-living – the companies reinventing the idea of roommates


With wages stagnant and rents soaring, young people in New York, San Francisco and other hot (read expensive) cities are increasingly moving in with roommates. The number of 18- to 35-year-olds living with roommates has doubled since 1980. Young people have always needed housemates, especially when times are tough. But this time it’s different. A new generation of co-living companies are trying to make shared housing a billion-dollar business.

Co-living â the companies reinventing the idea of roommates | Business | The Guardian

http://www.theguardian.com/business/2016/mar/20/co-living-companies-reinventing-roommates-open-door-common-

Stashed in: Awesome, Inspiration, Homeless, Mountain View, @kimmaicutler

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With the help of investors and developers who are hoping to break into the “roommate” market, some of the co-living companies are attempting to perfect their business model and scale it. Common raised $7.35m last summer for its expansion. At Euclid Manor, Open Door founders are also working with investors. 

“Essentially, we have spent two years perfecting the model and improving our track record,” says Standish. “We understand all the details of how co-living works on the ground. We can consult with the developers and help them reality-check the building because we know how it works.”

In the future, the Open Door founders would like to partner with developers on new ground-up projects – similarly to the way that Common has on its 51-bedroom location in Williamsburg. 

“It’s about being able to fully customize the program and layout of the building for co-living,” explains Provan. “Using the existing mansions, you are kind of working with an imperfect product and layout and after the fact changing it to co-living.”

Before Euclid Manor was a co-living space, it was a bed and breakfast. Each room has its own feel and reflects the personality of its occupant. 

According to Provan, the more companies do co-living the better, since each space and attendant services might appeal to a different group of people. 

Co-living is so hot now, interest rates are so low, rents are so high – all the factors seem to be in the new landlords’ favor but will all the competition and hype build a new housing bubble? 

“I’m not worried [about competition],” says Hargreaves.

“Anything that brings more housing on to the market in an incredibly housing crunched city is a positive thing. The only way that we might harm each other as competitors is if we both brought so much inventory on to the market that we were forced to lower our prices in order to compete. And you know if [Common] and WeWork going at it has such an effect that it lowers the cost of living in New York City, wouldn’t that be a thing? Wouldn’t that be awesome?” he adds, smiling.

Co-living â the companies reinventing the idea of roommates | Business | The Guardian

Co-living â the companies reinventing the idea of roommates | Business | The Guardian

I like the look of it. Mountain View has a coliving community:

http://mountainviewcohousing.org/

(Most "Comments" were not positive)

— Kinda revolting that something as old as househsaring is now being made "cool", slapped over with the latest corporate buzzwords and will no doubt end up costing people more than before.

— $1,800 for a room? It's just a new way to squeeze more rent for less space and add a middleman into an already maxed out housing bubble. i.e. no value added. People wo are attracted to co-housing situations are the least corporate as they believe in actual sharing to reduce costs and create real community. This provides neither. Pretty much just a shared "adult" dorm room. yikes

— Right so apparently cramming as many people as possible into a shared living space on overpriced, short term contracts is now apparently a "new community living concept.

Co-living â the companies reinventing the idea of roommates | Business | The Guardian

Co-living â the companies reinventing the idea of roommates | Business | The Guardian

One of Silicon Valley's preeminent journalists is leaving the Bay Area to go to a coliving space in Miami:

http://pandawhale.com/post/71150/why-kim-mai-culter-is-leaving-california-for-roam-coliving-a-global-experiment-in-co-living