Coliving in 2021 and Beyond
Pandemic changed a lot of things for everyone! Who knew that we would have to stay away from family and friends for our safety and theirs?
2020 was a difficult year for many businesses including the coliving sector. Many co-living spaces managed to stay afloat, but a great many were forced to compromise. They had to drop their rates, reduce occupancy, and in the worst-case scenario, close down.
In 2021, the coliving sector is expected to bloom once again.
In this article, we will discuss the future of coliving in the post-pandemic world.
The Future of Coliving Sector
Coliving spaces are usually occupied by students and workers from different places.
Right when the lockdown started, a large number of people had to move. Professional and students, living in metropolitan cities moved back to their home cities leaving a big question mark for the coliving businesses!
On the other hand, Covid-19 transfers from one person to another through direct contact with the virus. You can get it from another person, or even by coming in contact with a surface contaminated with the virus. In a co-living space, it’s a lot difficult to not come in contact with others!
But “This too shall pass”!
Although occupancies in co-living spaces are still down by 15-25 percent, pandemic turned out to be a blessing in disguise. Although, not to everyone.
Currently, the co-living market is divided between unorganized and organized players with only 1 percent of the branded segment. If 15 million people need accommodation, only about 100,000 to 120,000 beds are offered by the organized market!
So, what’s the catch?
Educational institutions and businesses starting the new year with new spirits are showing interest in managed living spaces. They want to ensure that their students or employees are living in the right environment.
Covid has accelerated the migration of customers from the unbranded to the branded co-living sector.
In rented accommodations and PGs (paying guests), the consumer must interact with 15 to 20 points of interaction with the outside world. Interacting with people for stuff like food, laundry, plumber, and housekeeping is inevitable.
Now, coliving players are reducing their touch-points. They’re promoting a sanitized environment and contactless service delivery.
How can The Coliving Sector Survive in 2021?
Over time, everything needs to evolve. The Coliving sector is indeed affected by the pandemic, but they’re changing trends to make the experience safer.
Here’s how the coliving sector can survive in 2021.
1. Sanitation and Safety
There are two things that the pandemic brought, face masks and sanitizers. If we put the two together, that would add up to sanitation.
Now, the primary focus of coliving players is on sanitation. That includes trained staff, contactless environment, periodic sanitization, and medical support.
2. Adapt with The Time
The biggest advantage of coliving in the community. Even if you’re living far away from home, you can still interact with people and have an active social life!
The common areas in coliving spaces used to be some of the most crowded places in the evenings. With social distancing rules and regulations, the buildings must be redesigned. And not just the new buildings, but the old ones too!
3. Expand The Audience Base
Students and remote workers have the biggest hand in changing the paradigm of coliving. With the cutting down of their accommodation needs, it’s important to expand the audience base!
Coliving players can target locals, tourists, short-term renters, and offer subscription-based plans. Business or sales travelers are another potential consumer base for the co-living sector.
4. Services and Social Distancing
In a co-living space, operators, and landlords who offer professional services while promoting a sense of community and well-being will have an edge. The challenge is to promote a sense of community without compromising on the government guidelines on social distancing!
Consumers always prefer a building run by a professional rather than someone who’s experimenting on the go!
5. Expand to Tier 2 Cities
As people are moving towards tier-2 cities more and more, the coliving sector can also expand there. They can explore the market and set up centers in the tier-2 towns and cities. Providing remote hubs for people in various districts and offering commodities like WiFi, meeting and office spaces is another step in the right direction.
Coliving in 2021 and Beyond: Winners, Losers, and How Pandemic is Changing The Game
We’re going through a unique time in the history of humanity. Even with all the challenges, we’re lucky to be alive and healthy!
The co-living sector was expected to grow in 2020, but the pandemic changed everything. On one hand, people cannot afford to spend too much money on their living arrangements and the other hand is social distancing! A concept that has changed the very way we lead lives.
If the coliving sector evolves with the changing needs of the consumers, it will see the good days again. There are still many opportunities if you’re willing to grow and take a chance!