Only the beginning of autumn, but with sadness I remember the summer. No, don’t think about it, the wrong few days of vacation on a white sand beach – empty roads that made it easy to get to your office for your favorite job in the summer. Yes, yes, I’m not joking. Literally from the first days of September, Kiev completely froze in traffic jams – there are all the main highways, bridges and even small streets. The movement is not even difficult, it is absent. The situation in public transport is no better – the metro, trams, trolleybuses are crowded and the main asset of our transport system is minibuses. As soon as the children went to school and kindergartens, and students at universities, the city fell into a transport collapse. Of course, I understand that for us this has long been the norm, but believe me, this should not be so.
Today in Ukraine there are about 1.5 million students, of which just over 360 thousand are studying in Kiev, which is about 10% of the population of the capital. How many of their nonresident, one can only assume, there are no official data. From time to time, our development company takes a closer look at the student dormitory segment. The hostel is a complex operating business, in fact, an analogue of the hotel, whose payback in the current conditions reaches 15 years. And here the Ukrainian mentality is triggered, which says that “freezing” money for such a long time is not rational, especially when you consider that there are more profitable investment options. By the way, for a number of global systemic investors this is a popular business.
If we have not even heard about commercial hostels in our country, then the coliving associated with coworking, which almost every month opens in Kiev, sounds more clear. At the same time, in fact, co-living is the same hostel, it is only called in a fashionable way and is built taking into account modern realities, and not soviet approaches. Interestingly, one of the first coliving in New York was opened by Ukrainians. The fact is that in America it is almost impossible to rent an apartment for a period of up to a year, while you need to have an impeccable credit history, pay taxes and correctly draw up all the documents.
So why this format does not shoot in Ukraine? There is a fundamental difference between “with us” and “with them”: here I live in a rented apartment, I like it because at any time I can change it if necessary. I understand that my investment in a real apartment is 11 years of payback, so I’d better invest this money in my business, which brings a return corresponding to 3-4 years of payback. That is, I consider it purely economically, but it is vital for an average Ukrainian to own real estate – this is a kind of support for him. Another thing is that few in our country can afford the desired square meters in our country. The dream of the cherished housing for most Ukrainians is broken at a rate of 28% on mortgages.
Projects that started a few years ago as rental projects have not taken off due to our mentality, but Generation Z is growing up and they will certainly get to the rental business. I am sure that rental real estate, co-renting, student housing, which today are one of the rapidly growing segments in many developed and developing countries, will soon become such in Ukraine. This is an inevitable and very positive trend.
It makes no sense to raise money for an expensive apartment if you can now live in the conditions in which you want. In addition, the modern generation is completely not attached to the house, as to a generic nest. Today the world is absolutely open and full of opportunities, so why, in anticipation of them, sit in one place? Let’s be honest: we spend more and more time at work, in public spaces or traveling, and we come home just to sleep. So do we need a whole apartment to sleep? Probably not. A separate bedroom in coliving is quite enough to retire, think, relax, and then again dive into your offline social network, which in fact are coiling.
Ask why the September traffic jams? The time of the joint consumption economy has already brought co-working in Ukraine, we are on the verge of the appearance of co-colings, followed by car sharing. And maybe everything will grow and develop so intensively that the zero kilometer theory will become quite a familiar reality and traffic jams will resolve by themselves – without building new bridges and interchanges, for which we still have no money in the budget.
Andrey Ryzhikov, CEO and managing partner of DC Evolution