Coworking and coliving go together like two peas in a pod. And that’s not just because they both start with the word ‘co’. Both born from similar schools of thought, coworking and coliving are movements that have deeply ingrained value systems based on collaboration, transparency, and community. In addition, both movements aim to reimagine the way we interact on a day-to-day basis, whether that’s in a professional or living environment. Inspired by traditional communal living spaces, and the current demand for more affordable living spaces for young professionals who are struggling to make ends meet, coliving spaces have been popping up more and more, especially in densely populated urban areas.
Source: Outsite – Mission – Coliving.com
While humans have always lived communally throughout history, coliving today is taking on new shapes and forms, answering contemporary needs discovered by the growing coworking movement. While it seems like the next logical step for coworking should be the integration of coliving spaces, it’s important for both coworkers and coliving to understand the evolution of the two movements so we can continue to grow, together.
The coworking movement had grown by leaps and bounds since the early days. Catching the eyes of corporations, and traditional enterprises, coworking has entered a new stage of growth, which has created new opportunities for spaces to increase their revenue. For spaces that might not be totally keen on going corporate, embracing the coliving movement has proven to be an effective way to expand their revenue, without compromising their community feeling.
Depending on what part of the world you are living in, the average monthly payment for a full coworking space membership can range anywhere from 150 to 500 plus. While many coworking spaces cover the utilities with membership payments, many spaces struggle to turn a profit. The inclusion of living space could help spaces boost their revenue while maintaining the community spirit. Additional income for coworking spaces boosted by a coliving space could be used to fund more events, update amenities and take on new staff.
In a similar way that coworking spaces have encouraged professionals to change the way they work together, coliving has helped a new generation of professionals and wanderers reinvent the way we work and live. Much like coworking, coliving offers much more than just a bed to sleep in. Individuals that seek out coliving communities are looking for an experience, one which will allow them to expand their network, and minds.
The majority of coliving spaces, the world over, provide a professional area where members can get work done. Often inhabited by digital nomads who are familiar with the coworking movement, these shared living spaces make sure that there is a productive environment integrated into the living space. Similar to coworking, coliving spaces provide communal areas that encourage members to physically get together whether it’s to have a chat or share a meal. Much like coworking has encouraged workplace culture to be more inclusive and human-centric, coliving spaces are boosting community awareness, by redefining how we coexist.
The number of freelancers around the world is rising, in addition to more companies letting their employees work remotely. This has led to a new breed of coworkers, the digital nomad. Coworking spaces around the world, especially those located in touristic centers, have benefitted from an increase in workers visiting their spaces. While the majority of coworking spaces primarily serve the local members, these spaces have found that coliving can help bring value-added to their space and community. Rather than just relating to their hotel room after a day of working, nomadic members can get to know the local people by making their current location a home away from home.
Source: Hotel Schani – Wien – Coliving.com
Hotel Schani Wien, based in Vienna has taken the idea one step further, by providing a coworking hotel that is centrally located in Austria’s capital city, Vienna. By offering digital nomads an incentive to stay with their professional coworking space located in the lobby of the hotel, Schani Wien also encourages visitors to get to know other members staying in the hotel, which could lead to potential professional collaborations, in addition to diversifying the local setting.
Adding a cool living space isn’t criteria for running a successful space. Although it does come with many added benefits that could allow the coworking movement to identify new ways to promote more collaborative and innovative ways of living.