On Tuesday 25 September our Marketing and Communications Manager Sara Taddei spoke at the CDV Conference “Micro living: the house, from asset to service”. Speaking from her experience at DoveVivo, Sara provided an alternative perspective on the phenomenon, focussing on millennials.
Within the broader concept of the sharing economy, young people have learned that sharing things has many more advantages than owning them – they share cars, bikes, objects. They also share homes and they are doing it in a new way: a new concept of the home is clearly emerging, and we are beginning to see new demands and new trends that will characterise living in the future.
One of these trends is autonomy. Young people aspire to have “a bubble all of their own”, small but fully equipped and independent. In this respect micro living may be the solution. But for young millennials, the ideal is for this bubble to be in a space with other microbubbles and common areas where they can live together. While on the one hand they need to isolate themselves as part of the trend for individualisation that we hear so much about now, on the other hand, they are looking for new forms of community which no longer involve family, but rather a circle of friends or study partners. This is the “alternative” vision of micro living as per the DoveVivo model: shared housing, i.e. shared rooms, which become a microcosm where a millennial away from home can find refuge, an intimate space where they have privacy but within a larger, established living situation, a home where all the services and utilities are shared with other residents.
Both formulas are smart: rationalisation, simplification and modularity are the common keywords, aimed at minimising spaces and maximising quality of life.
The key feature of the DoveVivo model compared to micro living is sharing, which is an integral part of the offering: in DoveVivo houses, residents share expenses, they share objects for smarter usage, but most of all they share an experience.
The conclusion reached by our Marketing and Communications Manager is that there is no one path. Micro living and shared housing are not alternative solutions but two potential answers – most likely dependent on the individual’s stage of life – to one question: what form of shared living allows us to best express our identity today, knowing that that could change tomorrow? Generally speaking, you could say that this shift in focus among millennials stems from the fact that where you are matters more than how many square metres you have.