Your initial days in university involve sharing accommodation with near-strangers—in fact, you might keep on living with housemates even after your studies. Unfortunately, most of the time, people soon realise and note various types of annoying and irritating flatmates. Housemate’s bad habits include pile-up of dirty dishes, open cans of tuna found in the fridge, and running out of clean spoons and forks because no one else does the dishes.
These habits lead to cracks developing between housemates and the worst thing is that there are many types of difficult housemates out there. Although we do not encourage labelling and stereotyping housemates in this manner, sometimes knowing what you’re dealing with makes it easier to tackle. You can also learn more about complicated flatmates on Assignment Geek.
Sadly, spoiled brats are unavoidable in life. If you end up living with one, you will go to hell and back. Such characters usually take a gap year to explore themselves and are always complaining about lacking something to wear even though they have more designer clothes than most people.
Naggers are super handy at sorting issues around the house, such as handling mouse-shaped problems and fixing power cuts. But, by doing so, they’re also experts at making you feel like you’ve just moved from one parent to another. Not ideal.
Such flatmates have their utensils covered with mould, and usually can’t be bothered with cleaning their dirty dishes after a big party. They’re either busy playing on their PS4 while scoffing the previous night’s leftover food or watching some movies. The smell coming from their bedroom is sickenly strong, and they are most definitely responsible for the stain on your carpet.
Party animals come in handy when you’re looking to get slaughtered on a weeknight. The problem is that they always take things too far—even for you. You’ll meet them half-naked in the hallway the next morning or asleep in the kitchen since they did not manage to climb the stairs. We’ve all been there, done that, but get a grip!
Dramatic housemates can be pretty scary because of their terrible mood swings. For instance, let’s imagine they ‘borrowed’ your frying pan and failed to clean it. If you dare mention it, they’ll be ready to pick up a fight with you, and they’ll win.
You may enjoy a good time with them, but you might not enjoy living with them without contributing to rent as much. Okay, their baby voice can be weirdly cute sometimes, but them eating all your cereals certainly isn’t. Make it clear that if things do not work, then they will need to move out asap.
These housemates that travel home every weekend, and surprisingly, you yet have had the chance to meet them. Be grateful that they exist because in a busy student’s hall of residence, such characters are a blessing in disguise. They are on point when it comes to paying rent, yet never disturb anyone with loud music.
We all love music, but listening to Drake’s latest song at 4 a.m. is not cool.
Co-living is not a brand new concept, and yet, recently, an improved version of the 1960s movement seems to be making a comeback in major cities across the world. So what is co-living and how has it changed from its previous commune connotation to one of the most innovative ways of using urban space today, attracting an entire host of tenants in search of something that better fits their needs?
Co-living is a form of housing that combines shared communal facilities with private living spaces—it’s basically a home that promotes both social contact through community events alongside much needed personal space and privacy. It’s about time we realise that the future of cities and living needs to undergo a big change, and companies providing co-living spaces like The Collective are putting some fascinating ideas on the table.
When it first opened in 2016, The Collective was the U.K.’s first large-scale co-living space operating in the field. Today, it provides co-living locations in London, in Old Oak and the recently opened Canary Wharf in, New York, and planned sites in Chicago, Miami, and Germany, while operating out of three offices globally. To give a sense of scale for the demand for this new way of living, to date, The Collective has raised $800 million.
Migration to big cities like London and New York is on the rise, which puts the already limited housing stock under pressure. Add to this the unavailability of small and reasonably-priced flats in trendy areas plus the uncertainty of living with strangers, and you’ll quickly realise why co-living is evolving alongside a growing demand for fully furnished houses that offer good facilities and utilities, while also making tenants feel less isolated.
Co-living then tackles the space and the loneliness issues in one swift go, something that has become urgent in the U.K., with inner city people more likely to be lonely than those in any other area, and 23 percent of the population most likely to feel on their own—despite having hundreds of followers on Instagram and however many Facebook friends. Talking to Screen Shot about what led him to create this community-driven living space, founder and CEO of The Collective Reza Merchant said, “I came across how difficult it was to find good quality accommodation whilst I was studying at the London School of Economics. It was hard to find a place that was homely and didn’t isolate me from the community around me. This struck me as a very unnatural way to live, as by nature we’re social creatures. At The Collective we want to reinstate our social needs which is why we’ve made it our mission to build and activate spaces that foster human connection and enable people to lead more fulfilling lives”.
The movement of co-living is offering our ever-changing world new ideas of how we’ll be living in the future. The way we use the space we live in has changed. We’re out during the day, out during the night; we need flexibility in everything we do. And what about those empty flats we leave behind for probably 80 percent of the day? Doesn’t it make sense that we find a way to reduce the sheer mass of empty space? “As we increasingly become global citizens, rather than citizens of just one country, owning a property has become less of a priority. We’re much more concerned with personal fulfillment and shared experiences than material possessions”, Merchant notes, adding that, “Cities are huge playgrounds for this, which is where co-living is making a real difference. We’ve welcomed members from all walks of life, with each getting much more than just a roof over their head. Their shared experiences enrich each other’s lives, whether that be collaborating on work, forming new friendships, falling in love, or just simply hearing different stories over dinner”.
Co-living spaces are curated for a new and specific living experience where it’s all about sharing the right amount of space and the right amount of time with the right amount of people. And what makes The Collective different from other companies operating in the field is that it works to accommodate tenants of various ages, nationalities, and professions through communal events and spaces—creating a melting pot at your doorstep.
The Collective doesn’t stand out just because of the aesthetically pleasing design of its spaces, but, most importantly, due to its new approach toward co-living. It wants you to live in a nice and clean space, yes, but also for you to feel connected to the community and be inspired by the people and the spaces that surround you, so you can get more from your home than just a good night’s sleep and a hot shower.
What’s next on the agenda, then? And what more could we get out of this new concept of living? The lifestyle that companies like The Collective are offering us is a step toward demanding more from where and what we call home. Pretty buildings with gyms, pools, terraces, and TV rooms are not what make this whole concept interesting; rather, it’s the community that can come out of it. To establish a global network of co-living communities that are built on continuous learning, innovation and improvement, The Collective looks at the long-term operation and how it can improve to give you the best co-living experience.
Looking at how people live in communities now, and at how it sometimes works out and sometimes doesn’t, co-living is only at the beginning of its journey. For now, at least, it looks like our bright future is made of shared spaces, communal experiences, and a bit of alone time in a thoughtfully designed private space.
This is the first article of a three-part series looking at co-living and what the future of this new trend will hold. Parts two and three will soon be published on Screen Shot online.