Co-living – a possible affordable rental solution post-Covid-19?


Co-living is a new-ish take on accommodation. Gaining momentum across the world, this innovative model to embrace could support the new normal way of living as we find ourselves in an era of affordability, accessibility, and functionality.

Modern co-living brings a smart and appealing solution to a new-found, progressive property market for investors and residents and particularly now for tenants who find themselves unable to honour their rentals during the pandemic.

Sebastian van Greunen, Development Manager of Flyt Property Investments believes that we should see this upgrade of communal living enjoy a resurge of popularity in South Africa that will provide a post-Covid option which will bridge the gap for urban residents looking for homes that provide secure micro-spaces, shared living areas and common spaces at affordable prices while providing slightly larger private areas for independent living too.

While we live in a connected world, there is a feeling of isolation – social distancing and young professionals, millennials, digital nomads, creative entrepreneurs and students are moving towards accommodation that embraces a sense of community and a shared economy within a safe haven. This concept also works well for remote workers looking for temporary, short-term accommodation or a few nights a week when in town for business. These ‘global citizens’ are looking for a place that feels like home which is private and cultivates a sense of security that creates continuity in terms of community while being inclusive.

Van Greunen says that there has been a definite increase in rentals in the co-living space with millennials representing the largest share of the market. “Their particular, flexible lifestyles of living, working and playing are shaping the industry as a whole.” He adds that the concept includes the aging population whose rising healthcare costs are also nudging them to consider the co-living model.

These urban rental apartment communities will pop up in key suburbs throughout South Africa, providing excellent investment and rental opportunities that are affordable and flexible. These well-designed models deliver innovative common spaces, fully equipped co-working areas, restaurants and coffee shops with compact, efficiently designed apartments which have their own kitchen and living areas.

Flexible rental options allow residents the freedom to choose how long they wish to stay for, whether it is for a few days, a few months or longer. The fully serviced aspect allows for ramped-up hygiene and sanitation standards along with more frequent and improved housekeeping and cleaning practices.

Across all age groups, this co-living concept has proven to be a popular option and along with affordability and the latest technology, it will soon become the real estate investment preference in alternative living.