Why I’m starting a coliving startup

By Youri Published 22/03/2017

I love entrepreneurship. I love all those people working like crazy to create value out of a strange idea they had one night. I love their passion. I love the risks they take. I just love it all.

After starting (and selling) two startups, I’ve been working as a Strategic Consultant for the past 10 months. It’s been an amazing journey so far but I feel like I have to go back to my first love.

Like most of the time, the idea we had for our new startup came when we expected it the less. We were looking for a real estate investment opportunity in Brussels and quickly noticed that a lot of the places we were visiting (the ones with the highest ROI) were rented by young professionals as a house share. Most of the shared homes we saw were messy, not organized and not really great places to live in. We talked with some of the tenants and they told us that it was very complex to find an affordable, flexible and convenient house share in Brussels and abroad.

After thinking about it for while, we decided to analyze a little bit the house share market in Europe and came up with some pretty strong numbers :

  • +5% average rent increase between 2014 and 2015
  • 4 demands for 1 supply in house share
  • 15 mio people living in a shared accommodation

After reading those numbers and testing our own house share we had invested in a year ago, we decided it was time for a radical change in the co-living market.

We started Cohabs in January 2016.

Cohabs is a Belgian startup that provides a network of flexible, fully furnished accommodations by creating sustainable & community-driven shared homes.

We are currently managing 3 houses with a total of 28 rooms and are planning to have 60 rooms available by the end of the year.

Since starting the project, our main focus has been on the community and the way people are living together. We have been lucky enough to find amazing members and it has been pretty crazy to see how people easily connect in a good environment.

We’ll keep improving the cohabs experience with on-demand services, a mobile app, regular events and the convenience of our houses.

Oh boy, it’s gonna be a fun ride.

A funny thing happened along the way, I’ve developed a group housing project with 6 friends so we can all live together.

I guess this project already changed my life.

I love entrepeneurship.

About the author CEO of Cohabs