According to the IKEA innovation lab Space 10 research, the world’s cities need to almost double in size to accommodate the influx of people expected by 2050 – with a staggering more than 2.5 billion predicted.

It is estimated that London alone needs 50,000 new homes per year to meet its ever-growing housing demand. This target hasn’t been met since the early 1970s and it is becoming very apparent that more needs to be done to address the problem. With traditional housebuilders and developers delivering around 55% of the needed homes, there is a growing consensus that building in the way we have done historically is not an option. 

Adding to the problem as highlighted in the Farmer Review  , data suggests that the UK construction industry is due to lose 620,000 domestic workers to retirement by 2026.

The picture is a gloomy one as construction has already entered a technical recession and faces significant cost inflation pressure, too. Materials costs are rising on global markets, and the depreciation of sterling has also added to prices. 

The consequence is a rise of overcrowding and homelessness with people often living in inhumane conditions, sleeping rough or falling into debts as a direct result of overpriced accommodations. 

To bridge the gap between housing demand and supply, perhaps we need to look at some more innovative methods and ideas. 

A concept of co-living is not entirely new and original as it has existed in similar forms in the past. Back then, we would have army quarters, border homes or labour units, all with shared facilities. 

These days co-living is a part of the sharing economy and hence, it has the potential to bring some real change to the world as we know it.  Similar to Airbnb or Uber, it designed to lower the costs of services, housing in this instance. 

Similar to the co-working which offers office space by the room or by the desk, co-living brings people who are unrelated together to share apartments. 

Strangers can now live together, share homes to live more affordably and socially. But in case you’re not aware, co-living is much more than just apartment sharing or a rooming house. Here the emphasis is put on the benefits of co-living spaces, such as greater security, safe places to play, improvement in communication and social aspect, having someone to sign for your parcel or cook a meal with. 

Residents, or rather members can join these communities and instantly tap into amenities like free internet, shared dining, a cleaning service or simply make new friends. Some co-living spaces even have scheduled outings and managers who check on your sleep quality! 

They also offer flexibility to hop from one location to another, with minimum stays as short as 30 days. 

Co-living spaces are not just for quirky Millenials, though. Some spaces are designed for work-from-home individuals, party lovers, elderly or families. The family-orientated co-living spaces are designed with children in mind allowing a safe and secure environment, shared play facilities, driveless neighbourhood, shared and joint care and more.  

If you are interested in the co-living and considering redesigning or repurposing your living arrangement, then JD Architects are here to help! Our team of experts can take your project from a concept through to completion! Contact us today on 016 3324 5020 or email

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