Betting on Shared Housing and Why It Matters
Shared housing, also known as co-living, has a long history in America. From boarding houses in the 19th century to the hippie communes of the 1960s, communal living arrangements have been an alternative to traditional family homes. However, in recent years, shared housing has seen a resurgence, and there are several reasons why this trend is likely to continue.
First, the rising cost of housing is making it difficult for many Americans to afford a place of their own. According to a report by the National Low Income Housing Coalition, there is no state in the U.S. where a person working a minimum wage job can afford a two-bedroom apartment at fair market rent. This means that more people are turning to shared housing as a way to save money on housing costs.
Second, the rise of the gig economy and remote work has made it easier for people to move around the country without being tied to a specific location. This has led to an increase in the number of people who are willing to live in shared housing, as it allows them to live in urban areas where housing is expensive without having to pay the full cost of rent on their own.
Third, there is a growing trend towards community-oriented living arrangements, as more people seek to build connections with others in their neighborhood or city. Shared housing can provide a sense of community and belonging that is difficult to find in traditional housing arrangements, especially in large cities where people often feel isolated.
Fourth, the COVID-19 pandemic has made people more aware of the importance of social connections and the benefits of living in a supportive community. Shared housing can provide a sense of security and support that is difficult to find in other types of living arrangements, especially for those who live alone.
Finally, the environmental benefits of shared housing are becoming increasingly apparent. By sharing resources such as water, electricity, and heating, shared housing can help reduce carbon emissions and lower energy costs.
All of these factors suggest that shared housing is likely to become an increasingly popular housing option in the United States. While there are challenges associated with communal living, such as conflicts over shared spaces and differences in lifestyles, the benefits of shared housing are likely to outweigh the drawbacks for many Americans in the years to come.