Co-living has taken off in recent years and has added a new dimension to the private rented sector model. According to real estate firm JLL’s latest report, this form of living arrangement has become more popular across the Asia Pacific due to its cost efficiencies and conveniences that it brings.
The concept of ‘co-living’ was coined to describe people who wish to live in a setting where there is some form of community. Whether this social aspect is during meal times in a communal kitchen or a designated working area where people have the chance to interact with others who do not work in a similar field, the purpose is to promote networking and to enhance sustainability.
According to the ‘Co-living in Costly Cities – Asia Pacific’ report, simultaneously living costs are rising thanks to increased property prices which have allowed co-living the perfect time to enter the market. Plus with more flexible terms than a normal rental lease ensures tenants are not tied into fixed periods, and as rents bundle in all utility costs, there is little management required from tenants.
“Co-living bridges a housing gap that traditional living categories do not support,” explains Rohit Hemnani, COO and Head of Alternatives, JLL Asia Pacific. “Since co-living spaces are fully furnished with cleaning and maintenance services, tenants only need to deal with one operator instead of paying for deposits, utilities, furniture, and agent fees.”
This model also works well thanks to the rising number of people choosing a profession that is either freelance or entrepreneurial that do not conform to the traditional office nine-to-five mentality. The number of co-working spaces in Bangkok has increased of late as a result of this new adapted way of working, but co-living takes this one step further by providing tenants with everything that they need all under one roof.
Despite it being very much in its early stages of infancy, JLL predicts that this sector will grow. India is leading the way with this model which was spurred on by a lack of supply of student accommodation that propelled this sector forward. Unsurprisingly thanks to high living costs in Singapore and Hong Kong, co-living in these two gateway cities has taken off the ground already.
For Bangkok, developers are already building condominiums with a range of facilities that go beyond the standard swimming pool and gym, and often have libraries, meeting rooms and co-working spaces to meet the needs of the new ways tenants are living.