The future of living. Coliving?
Two of my favorite topics are the future of work and the future of living.
In 2008, three other freelancers and I started Conjunctured, the first coworking space in Austin.
There are different models to coworking. Our model was: charge $250 per month, share desks, be friends. For myself and others it also was a source of great consulting work, though the space itself was never significantly profitable. Conjunctured was open for eight years — I was involved only for the first two — and I’m proud that it was a catalyst in the Austin startup scene.
For the last few years I’ve watched WeWork grow. While I have not officed with them, it seems they have done the best job of commercializing coworking. To me, WeWork succeeded because they saw the larger trend: coworking is serviced offices for millennials — Regus being the status quo here.
WeWork is CB2 and free beer. While Regus is cubicles and bad carpet, though I hear they are improving.
Here are their CEOs side-by-side. Could they be any more opposite?
Coliving. My prediction is that WeWork can succeed again with WeLive, because WeLive is a remake of serviced apartments. They are month-to-month serviced apartments that urban millennials want to live in.
Again, small spaces, free beer, nice furniture and community vs bland hotel feel and bad carpet.
Below is a list of coliving companies in the US markets I know best. Besides WeLive, the second most notable to me is Common in NYC.
Some traits I think are important:
- Spaces are in buildings, not houses
- Own them if you can
- Build a community, but also build a brand
- No strange names, no URLs that aren’t .com
- Leverage an existing community
I would love to see a successful competitor from SF. I was quite sad when Campus Coliving closed its doors last year, but I think there is room to try again and improve. (See Tom Currier’s new startup Sleepbus.)
Noteable coliving companies
San Francisco Bay Area coliving location
Los Angeles coliving locations
- podshare.co (?)
East Coast coliving locations
- *welive.com (NYC, DC)
- *hicommon.com (NYC)
- krash.io (Boston, New York, and Washington, DC)
- thecospace.com (NYC)
- commonspace.io (Syracuse, NY)
- added an asterisk if the company seems to be further along in growth
There is also another set of spaces/communities that are emerging. Nomadic communities who have houses around the world that one can travel to for a short period of time. Two notable companies doing this: