According to new data released by London’s leading co-living operator, renters choosing a shared property under the co-living model are older than ever before, with data showing that the average age of tenants within a house share in the capital is 30.6 years old – rising by two years since February 2020.
In addition, data also shows that this figure has risen by 7 years since 2017, when the average age of tenants within a Built Asset Management (BAM) co-living property was 23.9 years old.
To put it into perspective, BAM is renting over 1,300 rooms to tenants across the capital and since its inception in 2013, the firm has housed over 5,000 professionals from circa 1,000 London-based employers.
Adapting to the current times
“What we’re seeing here is co-living accommodation establishing itself as a sought-after accommodation option across a broader range of working professionals,” explained BAM co-founder and director Alex Gibbs. “Five years ago, co-living and houseshares were mostly popular amongst younger professionals, largely those in their twenties at the start of their careers or moving to London for the first time.
“This significant increase in our average tenant age highlights a real shift in attitude towards co-living accommodation. The asset class is no longer being viewed as ‘student accommodation 2.0’ in the way that it sometimes was in a previous era,” Gibbs continued. “The rise in average age of tenant reflects both new tenants taking out rental contracts with us, and existing tenants extending their leases, suggesting that co-living is not only attracting older tenants in the first instance – but also that more occupants are choosing to remain in this type of accommodation as they mature into their thirties.”
BAM’s tenant data also reveals that there is a fairly even split between women and men amongst co-living tenants in the capital, a statistic which has remained steadfast over the last five years.
“Co-living affords both flexibility and value for money to the renter,” Gibbs explained further. “This has become increasingly important to young professionals following the pandemic, which saw many facing uncertain work and commuting arrangements. What we’re seeing as we’ve come out of the other side of restrictions is this desire for a long-term flexible solution, as well as a built-in community at home.”
Gibbs concluded: “Qualitative data is telling us that the draw of the built-in community has been increased as a result of the feelings of isolation which lockdown restrictions caused for many, in combination with ongoing flexible work arrangements placing even more importance on communities and human interactions outside of the office environment.”