Co-living is safe and essential. It is also a unique form of dignified, affordable accommodation, says INSEAD, a global business school.
INSEAD researched co-living with MyTown, the co-living brand under Philippines Urban Living Solutions (PULS), and PeoplePods, a Philippine dormitory for migrant workers, and industry experts.
Findings of the research showed that workplace wellness had become front and center for both employers and employees.
Co-living can reduce the risk of community infections, as the average daily number of people a co-living tenant is in contact with is up to 98 percent lower than someone who relies on cramped and enclosed public transportation options. Moreover, a well-rested workforce is more likely to have a strong immune system that can fight a viral infection, according to the findings.
The study also shows that co-living and dormitory operators are encouraged to implement a thorough prevention and response framework against the pandemic and that doing so does not have to impact the sustainability of its business model.
“This is important since, thus far, COVID-19 has continued to show resilience, and ‘new normal’ measures, therefore, need to pass the long-term sustainability test,” said Jelmer Ikink, PULS group director.
It is also important to educate and communicate with the tenant population and prepare detailed response plans for a wide range of worst-case scenarios.
What has become a thriving real estate sector in normal times, co-living has now proven essential in times of crisis. “Especially in Southeast Asia, the focus of the handbook — alternatives to shared living — are often unaffordable, impractical, or unlivable,” said Daniel Layug, CEO at PeoplePods Philippines.
The findings of the research are available in an e-book entitled Co-Living Safety and Sanitation Handbook and discusses best practices in safety and sanitation for co-living operators during the COVID-19 pandemic. It is freely available to the public on the websites of MyTown (www.mytown.ph/ebook) and PeoplePods.