Why we believe connection will drive build-to-rent
In 2018, the UK appointed a Minister for Loneliness to help the one in seven Brits who often or always felt lonely.
In 2020, the world went into an enforced isolation to battle the COVID-19 pandemic.
Today, the Red Cross UK reports that 41 per cent of British adults are lonelier than they were before the pandemic.
How can build-to-rent help?
A sense of belonging and community sits at the heart of what makes us human. What build-to-rent can offer people is a social hub, a network of likeminded souls with which to share experiences.
After these enforced periods of isolation more of us are craving connection – but we also value our own solitude more than ever. Build-to-rent offers the ability to live in a considered community that delivers connection as part of its proposition.
Buildings that highlight this connection through events, co-working spaces and green areas where residents can bump into each other are finding many fans.
In fact, an Australian study found that many people crave the micro-interactions they enjoy with people in their community, which are impossible to facilitate digitally.
“That extra peripheral contact has been lost (during lockdowns), and that’s an important loss,” says sociologist Dr Roger Patulny of the University of Wollongong.
It’s these micro-connections – along with the ability to form more meaningful relationships with neighbours, that build-to-rent can offer residents feeling the impacts of the UK’s loneliness epidemic.
Technology plays a key role in the solution
The past 18 months have demonstrated how to stay social but distant. Zooms, Teams, FaceTimes – they’ve kept us together while we’ve been forced apart.
Build-to-rent technology can also play a role in bringing people together safely. Building management tools can streamline communication to residents – informing them of events, while tracking RSVPs for contact tracing purposes.
Apps can allow residents to book shared spaces, order cleaning after use and provide a record of who attended.
Smart technology can even integrate with contactless entry systems and deliveries.
Where technology was once seen as cold and impersonal, programs today are delivering humanity and connection to improve our wellbeing and nurture the connection we so desperately need.