18 January 2024

Learning from the Scandinavian approach to Build-to-rent and Co-living

By Build Zone
Co living BTR

Since the pandemic, the UK has seen a rise in the popularity of co-living construction developments, particularly in London and other major cities.

Co-living allows people to live in a shared space benefitting from private bedrooms and bathrooms and will often include communal areas such as kitchens, lounges, and workspaces.

It is becoming an increasingly popular choice for young professionals and students who want to live in well-designed spaces with their community and the opportunity to meet like-minded people. In this article, we’ll explore co-living, how it’s connected to Build to Rent, and what is expected of a co-living space.

What is co-living?

Co-living is a new way of living that has become increasingly popular in the UK. It usually involves multiple rooms surrounding a shared communal area, creating a community-focused environment. Co-living has become a natural choice for those who shun traditional living methods. A collaborative approach to living offers a more environmentally friendlier lifestyle. On average, residents within co-living spaces decrease their carbon footprint by a whopping 35%. Co-living allows people to work and grow personal and professional networks in more connected and homely surroundings.

How is co-living connected to Build to Rent?

Build to Rent (BTR) is a property development model focusing entirely on renters. It can deliver high-quality housing alongside customer-focused services, including flexible tenancies, facilitated social gatherings and maintenance on-site. Co-living spaces are essentially a part of Build to Rent. Letting Agents let units for multiple tenants within these developments, usually millennials, students or young professionals with average incomes. Regarding financial returns, BTR delivers greater yields and more resilient rental income streams, which is why co-living is becoming increasingly popular with developers.

What is expected of a co-living space?

A co-living space is a shared housing arrangement where individuals or groups live together in a communal setting. What is expected of a co-living space can vary depending on the specific space, its management, and the needs and preferences of its residents. However, there are some common expectations associated with co-living spaces:

Co-living spaces are often sought because they are more affordable than renting a traditional apartment or house. Residents typically expect the cost of living in a co-living space to be reasonable and competitive with other housing options. A sense of community is a central aspect of co-living. Residents expect to connect with others, make friends, and potentially collaborate on shared activities or projects. Common areas, social events, and community-building initiatives are often part of the co-living experience.

Co-living spaces usually come fully furnished, which means residents expect their rooms and common areas to be equipped with basic furniture and amenities. This can include beds, desks, chairs, kitchen appliances, and more. Essential utilities such as electricity, water, and internet are typically included in the rent. Additionally, co-living spaces may offer cleaning, maintenance, and concierge services to make residents’ lives more convenient.

Leasing Flexibility

Residents are often provided with flexible lease terms, allowing them to stay for shorter periods than traditional leases. This flexibility can appeal to people who need temporary housing or want to avoid the commitment of a long-term lease. Residents expect a safe and secure living environment. This includes features like secure entry systems, well-maintained buildings, and, in some cases, on-site security personnel.

Many co-living spaces offer additional amenities such as gyms, laundry facilities, communal kitchens, and recreational areas. The specific amenities can vary widely and should meet the needs and interests of the residents.

It’s important to note that different co-living spaces may have unique features and offerings, so residents should carefully review the terms and conditions, amenities, and community culture of a particular space to ensure it aligns with their expectations and preferences.

Co-living is the new buzzword in the property development industry and is becoming increasingly popular in the UK due to its social and sustainable aspects. Co-living is a new way of living perfect for millennials, students and young professionals. Co-living is connected to Build to Rent and is a segment of it. Developers are finding it a financially sound proposition that yields more significant returns. To have a successful co-living space, developers must ensure it’s well-designed with high-quality communal areas that create and foster a sense of community and inclusion for the tenants and, more importantly, that it’s eco-friendly and sustainable. Co-living spaces provide more than residences; providing additional value to the tenants’ lives by fostering lasting relationships. It stimulates the tenants’ social, professional and personal growth, creating a happier community that can contribute to the betterment of society.






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