Mutual aid, pooling of costs… Co-living designed for single-parent families

All week in Cannes, where the world’s real estate players gathered for Mipim, “coliving”, a sort of giant and multi-service colocation, confirmed its incredible rise in power since the pandemic. A trend, a priori part to stretch in the long term, that the French start-up Commune, launched a year and a half ago, has decided to specialize. In a few months, it will open its first two shared residences for single-parent families. A first in the world.

“When we looked at the market, we realized that no structure was directly dedicated to them even though they represent 25% of households, explains co-founder Ruben Petri. In Paris, it’s even a third of families. In New York, 50%. » A unit of 600 m2, in a building being renovated in Yvelines, and another of 1,200 m2, under construction in the Nord department, will be inaugurated by the end of the year.

“Disadvantaged compared to couples who have two salaries”

And for fifteen apartments in one and 28 in the other, Commune has already received “hundreds of applications” which it is evaluating. “Finding a home after a separation is often very complicated. Especially close to large tense cities, the appeal of co-living and its more attractive rates is important for single-parent families because they are at a disadvantage compared to couples who have two salaries. According to a study by INSEE, these homes show a 30% drop in the standard of living, on average, one year after the breakup, supports the manager. What we are offering them is a transitional solution. It is estimated that they will stay with us between one and three years. »

The common kitchen of a future location of the start-up – Commune

In its building in the Paris region, Commune will offer one-bedroom apartments with kitchenette and private bathroom from 1,200 euros, or “20 to 30% cheaper” than in the traditional private sector. Each apartment rental also includes access to outdoor common areas and kitchen, as well as a laundry room and games and entertainment rooms. That’s the concept.

Shared baby-sitting and catering

At this price, the charges, water, electricity and gas, are included. “As well as our basic services, such as the possibility of accessing streaming platforms, in addition to legal assistance and for children, who are two to three times more likely to have difficulties in school. in these families”, adds Ruben Petri.

Ruben Petri, one of the two co-founders of Commune, this week at Mipim, in Cannes
Ruben Petri, one of the two co-founders of Commune, this week at Mipim, in Cannes – F. Binacchi / ANP / 20 Minutes

“Co-living will allow us to also offer them cheaper babysitting or even catering services thanks to the pooling of costs. This is the most of this formula, apart from the fact that they will be able to find each other, share their experiences and help each other in times that are sometimes complicated to live with. There is more and more a need to meet in communities, especially for these families, ”he says.

Other projects in France, and soon internationally?

Commune already has other opening projects for 2024 “mainly in Ile-de-France, where the need is very accentuated”. But also elsewhere in France, where co-living thrives. The business real estate specialist JLL has counted 440 million euros invested in this new form of housing in 2021, then 291 million in 2022. Before 2020, it was less than 50 million euros per year .

“The Covid reshuffled the cards and people realized that living alone locked up in small apartments, isolated, was not very nice”, points out Tara Heuzé-Sarmini, the other co-founder of Commune. The start-up is also eyeing the international markets where the company could develop in the coming years.

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