Is Co-Living in the UK the New Norm?

22.02.2021

Co-living in the UK is getting more and more traction these days. Under the co-living term is included in the model where three or more tenants who are not from the same family or a single household are living under one roof. This type of accommodations is also known as HMO or shared housing. Due to the expensive cost and high standards of living and rents in big cities such as London, this model of living and accommodation is getting more and more popular in recent years.

However, outside London where rents are pretty high, co-living is getting more and more popular in other cities and towns in the UK too. People are just now starting to recognise and understand the social benefits that co-living can offer. One of the main points that make people consider the co-living model is that becoming a tenant, they are already moving into a space that is already furnished and liveable, which means significantly lower moving in cost. The hassle of conducting meter readings, delegating certain bills, or dividing the living cost between all tenants are usually also outside the picture because bills are normally already included in the offer. Co-living is a great living model that fits people with lower budgets and people who would like to minimise the cost of living and be able to save up some money.

In a recent study conducted by Barclays, almost half of the respondents share the biggest benefit co-living comes with is the reduction of the housing cost. Besides being popular with people looking for ways to reduce their living costs, co-living is also popular with investors since a higher number of tenants normally means higher yields.

The rising popularity of online shopping due to the current virus situation has provided investors and foundations with a window of many buoyant property opportunities, especially on markets near major and important distribution hubs in the country. Big distribution and transportation hubs outside London such as Doncaster, for example, are now announcing their plans for creating a lot of new jobs and vacancies over the next decade. One major consequence of the pandemic situation is that people are more and more shifting towards online shopping instead of conventional shopping in-store.

Recent studies show that besides the fact it was impossible to shop from non-essential shops during the lockdowns and shopping from these was necessary to happen online, people have actually understood and enjoyed the convenience of shopping from the comfort of their own homes. As a result, almost a quarter of the total population of the UK is now considering completely changing their shopping habits and shifting towards online shopping. Surprisingly, these statistics also include the older age groups that are usually not early adopters of new technologies such as online shopping or baking but have now been forced to learn and change their habits due to the pandemic.

The surge for online shopping means a stronger demand for warehouses and the opening of a lot of new employment vacancies at these new warehouses and logistic centres. Doncaster is one of the main locations that has been chosen for the opening of a lot of new warehouses and distribution centres with Amazon being among the first the announce their plans for building a distribution centre in the city.

As a result, property investment in Doncaster and the surrounding towns in the areas gain more and more traction and popularity in recent times. Investors are now planning to cater to the needs of warehouse workers for inexpensive accommodation close to their place of work. Since the jobs market is growing in this particular niche, the demand for accommodation is surely going to grow with the same temp and this becomes a lucrative opportunity for returns and profit if the correct property at the correct location is chosen.

Now, it is clear that in the foreseeable future there will be a higher and stronger demand for accommodation and housing in such areas that are warehouse and distributions hubs such as Doncaster and the surrounding area. Considering the average wage of a warehouse worker, it is safe to say that the new employees attracted by the job opportunities in such locations will be people looking for more affordable housing and for ways to cut down the cost of living. This kind of job are generally attracting younger people, often people who work this as their first job after graduation.

Naturally, co-living is an attractive and appealing opportunity for these young employees. Besides the obvious reason for a lower cost of accommodation and housing, young employees are also attracted by the idea that the co-living space comes fully furnished. So cutting down the cost of moving in and furnishing the place together with the more affordable rent and the fact that other tenants often make a good company and the social benefits of a shared housing situation, HMO will surely become one of the most popular rental options in many areas of the country and under these specific circumstances.