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Co-living is having a moment in New York. At least 10 co-living companies have set up shop in the city in the past few years. The concept is pretty simple, and not necessarily new. Detractors like to refer to co-living spaces as adult dorms, and there’s some truth there. The details vary, but on a basic level, co-living is living with strangers. However, instead of all piling onto one lease after meeting through Craigslist, you are only responsible for your room. (Exactly how legal all of this is in New York City is another question for another article.)

Co-living startups have been renting rooms in the city since at least 2012, but the number of providers has now exploded, and the increasingly competitive market means operators are offering more flexibility and different sorts of deals to stick out from the pack.

New York is hardly being overrun with hippie colonies, though. The co-living model is geared more towards convenience than kumbaya, with task such as bill management, house-cleaning, and even happy hours included as part of the rent package. The offering s can roughly be sorted into three categories: full-service/large scale, boutique, and budget. For obvious reasons, the industry is courting millennials, and that generation’s tech incubators are influencing this new take on roommate living. For example, Common, one of the big co-living companies, is founded by Brad Hargreaves, who previously created the computer education hub General Assembly.

As anyone who has endured finding an apartment and/or roommates in New York City can tell you, the process can be one headache after another. Co-living seeks to eliminate some of the common hurdles, while charging a premium for individual rooms. Most significantly for some new renters, some co-living spaces do not have stringent income requirements or require guarantors. Co-living also removes the politics and annoyance of splitting bills, keeping common spaces clean, and furnishing an apartment. Many will also ensure there are always basic staples on hand, like salt and pepper, olive oil, and paper towels. Everything is typically included in the monthly rent. Some co-living buildings also try to offer residents a pop-up social life, providing events and outings so newcomers and the interpersonally lazy can meet people without too much effort.

Many a new-school-SRO evangelist will tell you that when you factor in all the costs of day-to-day needs and conveniences, co-living is actually cheaper than conventional renting, but that’s obviously subjective and up for debate. The arrangement definitely does offer a flexibility that standard rental agreements do not. Some buildings offer minimum stays as short as 30 days, or even a single night, and many allow residents to hop from property to property. Some New York co-living companies have crashed and burned, but plenty have survived, and thrived. Here is our guide to the many co-living options in New York City, and what each of them has to offer.

“Co” factor: In addition to ongoing events organized by an in-house community manager (Sunday brunch, sunset yoga, etc.) and social excursions in and around New York, residents of Alta+ can use a gym, an indoor lap pool, indoor and outdoor lounges, barbecue areas, an event space, a co-working lounge, a game hall, and more.

How people are vetted:The company says it vets the same way standard landlords do: with criminal background checks, and credit and income qualifications. Residents can use Bedvetter, the company’s roommate matching platform (which it developed), to match themselves with other roommates if they like.

Alta+ Ollie in Long Island City is the company’s newest venture and opens this spring. It includes 169 micro-suites (495-941 square feet) with two and three bedrooms, and 297 standard apartments ranging from studios to three-bedrooms. The company also operates Ollie Carmel Place in Kips Bay (opened in 2016), and a Downtown Brooklyn location is opening in fall if 2018. You’ll also find Ollie in Pittsburgh, and projects in Los Angeles, Boston, and Denver are in the works.

Personal space:Residents get a room with a bed, a nightstand, a lamp, and pillows, as well as a bare hook for art of their choosing. Rent includes utilities, cable, a washer/dryer, weekly common space cleaning, wifi, and basic supplies such as paper towels, salt, and olive oil. The company is open to residents moving between buildings.

Who’s there: Common’s website says, “Our community in New York is just as diverse as their city is.” We find that somewhat hard to believe (New York is pretty diverse!) but Common does say that you’ll find recent college grads as well as established professionals and married couples.

“Co” factor: Common does organize events, but it also lets residents take the lead with ideas, and helps fund outings they come up with. Residents of all Common buildings nationwide can communicate via Slack. Overall, Common seems to be more interested in fostering community than playing cruise director. Living room spaces are furnished with items from West Elm and Restoration Hardware. Some buildings have outdoor common space as well.

Cost: The least expensive location is a Harlem townhouse where rooms start at $1,299 a month. West Village rooms start at $1,799 a month, and Park Slope rooms are $1,499 and up. Residents get wifi, Netflix and HBO access, communal living rooms with 76-inch TVs, a chef’s kitchen, laundry, and outdoor space (a roof deck in the Village, and a backyard in Harlem).

Personal space:In the West Village building, rooms have Murphy beds, and some (the pricier ones) have a desk and a marble mantel. Residenz limits residents of the smaller rooms to eight overnight guests per month, whereas residents of the larger ones get "unlimited" guests. This is the only co-living space we found with rules like this. Uptown, you also find Murphy beds in the smaller rooms, and desks fold down from the wall. These rooms are pretty spartan. Residenz provides linen service, reading lamps,safes, and Amazon Echos at both locations.

“Co” factor: Residenz says it carefully matches roommates, and there is a community manager on site, but they’re “not going to force you to have fun.” Ongoing “low-key” events include free Sunday brunch, welcome parties for new arrivals, and movie nights.

Personal space: WeLive offers furnished studios, and rooms in three-plus bedroom apartments, which are minimalist, with a dorm-like feel. The visible effort is focused on the common spaces, which are decked out in oversized art, velvet chairs, fuzzy pillows, and a mishmash of mid-century and industrial accents.

Who’s there?: WeLive describes its appeal as broad, with members including the expected young professionals new to the city as well as new parents with small children, workers who want to cut down on their commute, retirees, and empty nesters.

“Co” factor: WeLive offers lounges and a bar, plus regularly scheduled events and mixers, and residents can message each other on the WeLive mobile app. Gatherings include happy hours, cooking classes, and health and fitness classes. There is also a laundry/arcade room, reading lounges, media lounges equipped with Apple TV, premium cable, an exercise and screening room, and fully stocked communal kitchens with brewed coffee, tea, and citrus-y water.