DEMAND for co-living spaces has been growing, as young workers prioritize convenience and cost when looking for a place to live in the metro.

In its report “Co-Living in Costly Cities-Asia Pacific,” JLL (Jones Lang LaSalle) defined co-living as “a form of housing where residents with similar interests and values share living space.”

“The demand drivers that support the development of the co-living sector stem from changing demographics, financial considerations and tech advancements. The flexible co-living model is filling-in the gaps of a residential market that’s been under-served for too many years,” JLL said.

The concept of shared living spaces is not new, but JLL said there is now a more organized system with an emphasis on the 4Cs — collaboration, convenience, cost and community.

JLL said co-living spaces provide convenience to working professionals who need to live near their offices.

“Co-living offers flexible and shorter lease terms and often monthly lease options. Co-living contracts generally cover all services and move-in requirements. The spaces are fully furnished, utilities are set-up, and cleaning and maintenance services taken care of,” it added.

Co-living spaces are also more cost-efficient, as residents can share the cost of utilities, Wi-Fi, and cleaning services.

“While, a co-living space may cost more than a room in a shared apartment at first glance, once all the additional costs like move-in and move-out, agent fees, utilities, maintenance and furniture depreciation are factored in, the pricing is relatively similar — with the added benefit on having flexible lease terms,” JLL said.

People also opt for co-living spaces because of the feeling of community and the chance to collaborate with others.

“Catering to a young, aspirational demographic, residents within co-living spaces enjoy the collaborative benefits that the community provides. Some co-living models cater entirely towards a certain profile or profession, with co-living operations that specifically house ‘digital nomads,’ blockchain communities or tech start-ups,” JLL said.

In the Philippines, co-living spaces include dormitels, which is a combination of a dorm and hotel services. Majority of dormitels can be found in the fringes of business districts Bonifacio Global City and Makati City. These cater to young professionals who give importance to affordability, location, convenience, and safety.

Some dormitels in the country include iDorm, Bonifacio Point, MyTown New York, and MyTown Auckland, and the Flats Amorsolo, all of which are located in the Makati City area.

Major property developers are now making an entry into the new market. In 2017, SM Investments, Corp. bought 61.2% of Urban Living Solutions, Inc.’s MyTown brand, while Ayala Land, Inc. opened in 2018 its first dormitel, The Flats Amorsolo, and the second one this year, The Flats BGC 5th Avenue.

“JLL believes that co-living is a solution to address growing housing needs due to urbanization and provides an additional option to the different living types within Metro Manila,” the real estate services company said. — Vincent Mariel P. Galang