As a digital nomad you have probably noticed how dramatically the working trends have changed over the last couple of years.
Together with the trend of flexible hours and remote work (where the pandemic has played a considerable role) an opposite tendency came into being, that is coworking. The new trend is probably reinforced by the pandemic too and is easily explained by the people’s need to be a part of a community.
In this article we are going to talk about one of the clear demonstrations of this trend – the concept of coliving, which appeared several years ago and is gaining popularity since then. In case you are not yet familiar with the concept or vice versa you find it appealing and want to try it out, read on. We will try to give you a peek of what coliving is like with all of its pros and cons!
What is Coliving and how does it differ from Coworking?
If you are a digital nomad, you must already know what coworking means. Perhaps you are working in a coworking space now or at least have ever worked in one.
The idea behind the coliving concept is similar: location independent professionals who work in various fields get together to exchange creative ideas, socialize and find new business opportunities. The difference between the two concepts, however, is that with the communal living we went a step further – this is not only working with the like-minded individuals but also living with them under the same roof!
Residents of the shared houses usually have their own personal space (bedroom and bathroom), while sharing such public areas as a living room, kitchen, swimming pool, dining room etc. Just like in case with coworking, some managers of coliving spaces organize various events, like excursions, workshops, guest speakers for residents to get together and socialize.
What are the advantages of the concept?
One of the primary reasons why people choose to stay in a coliving space is that it is a great place to cooperate and establish synergies with other residents helping each other with their business projects, sharing ideas and making new friends!
Short and flexible leases
You came to a certain city but not sure if you want to settle here? No worries! You can start with a coliving space in this city and end your lease contract in a month or even a week.
On the other hand, staying in the coliving space for a longer term has its benefits too. With your neighbors rotating from week to week you are gaining new experiences and ideas!
Just like a coworking space, a coliving space usually offers you a lot of services included into the rent. This way you don’t have to worry about paying electrical, water or utility bills, clean the house, parking, gym etc. Some coliving spaces also provide their resident with meals and leisure activities – so their services are truly “all-inclusive”.
Lifestyle in a coliving space means being surrounded by a community of similarly-minded people so you can forget about loneliness and boredom. You are sure to feel a positive vibe of a communal lifestyle, living like a one big family going through thick and thin together.
What about the disadvantages?
Shared Communal Spaces
One of the biggest drawbacks that you need to consider when deciding for cohousing is how comfortable you are with sharing communal spaces. It’s obvious that you won’t always have a full access to the shared areas, such as a living room or a kitchen or amenities like gym or game room.
Remember that not everyone is the same. Sometimes you just want to watch your favourite TV show in the living room while your neighbors want to play loud music or invite a few friends over.
No Control Over Flatmate Selection
Of course the coliving spaces were originally created to match residents who have similar interests and come from similar professional fields together. However, the current residents not always have the opportunity to participate in the process of choosing their flatmates. Sometimes your personalities simply do not match up and you are stuck with someone who you do not get on with.
How to find the right coliving space?
First, you need to figure out the budget. Although, the rental fee in Coliving is supposed to be lower compared to regular rents (as it is divided among all the inhabitants), the prices between them still vary a lot. Check out the websites like coliving.com or colivingcircle.com to choose your perfect coliving space!
Another thing you should consider when picking the coliving space is its location. You need to decide what type of neighborhood you want to live in. In the heart of the city? Near the beach? In a new up-and-coming neighborhood? Also check how far is the area from where you need to travel to and whether you like the district.
The good idea is also to ask current or past residents about the location of the coliving space. This way you will be sure it provides what you’re looking for.
Nature of the shared spaces
Before making up your mind on the coliving space, make sure you know what facilities are offered. The essential amenities usually include shared kitchens and common living spaces where you can hang out with your newfound friends. Some spaces, on the other hand, may provide such services as a gym, BBQ pits or weekly cleaning (an important one) so don’t forget to check whether you need these and whether they are included in the price.
Coliving spaces are surely great. Today they aim to be more modern, functional and intentionally designed. However, you should consider what luxuries you might lose if you go for a coliving space versus a hotel room or your own apartment. Think about what is important to you, weigh up the pros and cons and make your decision!