Long gone are the days of having to remain in the same town, in the same house, doing the same job.
Today’s millennials have quickly realized that change is good for the soul and the bank balance. Nowadays, it’s easier than ever to move from job to job – gaining experiences in different countries. It’s a far cry from receiving a gold watch as a thank you for 25 years of being on a hamster wheel for the same company. Millennials don’t see that as job security – they see it more like a prison sentence. And that’s why they are embracing coliving and all the freedom that it brings. But freedom is not the only factor that makes coliving so appealing.
Millennials across the globe are jumping at the chance to travel and work remotely – meeting people from all corners of the world – and benefitting from broadening their minds and their horizons. And one thing’s for sure – this is a lifestyle that’s here to stay.
Let’s look at the reasons why.
Cost and Ease
Buying a house in today’s market seems an impossibility for most millennials. It’s simply too expensive. We earn less than our parents did and property prices are soaring.
Renting is the only option for the majority – and sharing the cost of a larger property is a win-win for both property owners and those wishing to rent. Renting on your own would probably have you seeking a box room or studio flat where you can touch both walls with your outstretched arms.
Sharing with others gives you that all-important space – a large living room, a good-sized kitchen, perhaps even a garden or a balcony.
When you rent a room in a coliving space, the cost of the electricity is included, as is the TV, repairs, maintenance and regular cleaning.
No more wasting a morning waiting in for the gas repairman to arrive. Not your responsibility. No hidden extras – no surprise bill for a broken water heater. It’s cost-effective and constant. That’s a comforting thought for many millennials who are bringing in various sums of money each month and don’t want to be hit with an unexpected bill.
Those renting usually have a much higher sense of respect for the property and furnishings when it’s shared with others – and established house rules ensure that the communal areas are clean and welcoming for everyone. Most spaces will ask for a deposit in case of those rare unavoidable accidents.
Coliving allows you the freedom to focus on you, your social life and your project – the house is not your issue to attend to, it’s simply there for your convenience, security and enjoyment.
Let’s break down the word ‘coliving’ – Community Living. It’s right there in black and white. Live together as a community. Move in, introduce yourself to others just like you and be welcomed into the community – instantly.
It’s an accepted fact that social media is far from social – indeed, it’s downright lonely. It’s made people stare down at their phone, lose themselves in their laptop screens – disengaging more and more from human interaction. It’s a sad fact that around 40% of millennials are chronically lonely.
And that’s where coliving has been heralded as a saviour and a solution. Living with like-minded people in a community setting allows people the choice of privacy in their rooms, or socialising in the communal spaces. The best coliving spaces have a Community Manager who sets up a variety of activities each week – from mastermind sessions to “family dinners”, excursions, movie nights and brainstorming on a Monday morning to set the goals for the week.
Some coliving spaces have a minimum stay to enhance the community feel as much as possible. Their aims are to allow people to interconnect fully – to make partnerships, friendships and connections.
In an increasingly virtual world, coliving promotes face-to-face interactions at pre-arranged weekly events or a simple bowl of cereal in the morning. Instead of checking into a hotel and only saying good morning to the reception staff and perhaps the housekeeping team, here is an opportunity to be surrounded by like-minded people – all seeking the same thing.
It’s safe, it’s welcoming and it’s a supportive community – as soon as you walk through the front door. I wish my first day at school had been that easy. And speaking of support, how wonderful to have a melting pot of skills and brains all under one roof. The ideas, opinions and problem solving that can occur during a brainstorming session – well, the possibilities are endless.
What was once a massive stumbling block in your head becomes a tiny issue when looked at through the eyes of your fellow coliving residents. Feeding off their energy can also inspire you to become more focused, more productive and more likely to finish your project faster.
The chances of success and revenue generation increase in the company of like-minded individuals who are all seeking similar goals.
Living in a coliving space brings a high level of security – from the screening of both staff and guests to the 24-hour security and CCTV cameras that are usually installed. Plus you have people in the house practically 24 hours a day – so prying eyes will see that it’s not a property to target.
And personal safety too – if you ever feel unsafe walking around late at night, you will have fellow residents who can accompany you on a night out or at the end of a phone should you need assistance
Quality and Variety
Consider living and working on a vineyard, or on a farm in Portugal, or maybe in a Victorian-style mansion block in London. Perhaps you fancy living in loft conversion in San Francisco or in the Italian mountains.
The variety is staggering and the quality of accommodation available is truly impressive. Simply choose your ideal location and see which types of coliving spaces are on offer there.
Millennials in a coliving space bring a cacophony of skills – with the majority using their laptop for their work. But others are photographers, or writers using their trustworthy notepad and pen. Others conduct online teaching that requires just a smartphone. There are no set rules for who can join a coliving space – designers, programmers, bloggers, entrepreneurs, reviewers, the list is endless. And the beauty of a coliving community is the willingness to share, support, mentor and even partner with fellow residents. The mutual respect is evident as soon as you join your first mastermind or brainstorming session. Stuck on a design issue? Just ask your fellow housemates. Need someone to critique your website landing page? Simply ask.
As soon as you enter a coliving space, you can feel the connection – it’s a non-judgemental community that thrives on the energy of those in it. The sense of acceptance, regardless of race, religion, sexual orientation and bank balance, is intoxicating. It’s like nothing else – to be welcomed and accepted without hesitation.