The Times has a story today about Millennials embracing co-living spaces—basically just a euphemism for having more roommates than is healthy—focusing on something called Pure House. (What a name!) One of Pure House’s tenants is a man named Russell Jackson, who is 52 years old—not a Millennial.
Stripped of marketing language, Pure House is basically a landlord that owns several apartments in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, renting them out at a relatively high density—the Times reports that Pure House rents rooms in nine apartments to about 40 people—with a relatively low barrier to entry: no credit checks, no salary requirements.
(Honestly, this isn’t the worst thing in the world. However, given the strenuousness of New York City’s illegal-hotel laws—an obstacle that other real estate disruptors have already faced—it may be illegal. We’ll see!)
Pure House isn’t the only proprietor of co-living arrangements, and the Times frames this as a trend driven by Millennials’ propensity for sharing and shifting expectations for privacy. But! One of the people living in a Pure House apartment is not a Millennial but a 52-year-old man.
This doesn’t necessarily debunk the trend (lol) but it is... something:
Russell Jackson relinquished a studio six months ago to live in a six-bedroom Pure House apartment with a rotating cast (he presently has three flat mates). “I’m getting exposure to stuff and things that I would not have had sequestered on the Upper West Side,” said Mr. Jackson, a 52-year-old chef.
“Laundry services and cleaners and masseuses — all of that is icing,” he said. The real perks are the people he has met along the way. “How cool is it that I walk in the door and they ask me, ‘How’s your day?’ And I am genuinely interested in hearing from them,” said Mr. Jackson, who considers himself the Den Dad to the other tenants, who generally are two or three decades his junior and stay a month or two at a time.
Mr. Jackson, who has appeared on “Iron Chef America,” also orchestrates Pure House’s food events, including its pop-up dinner parties. At one such party, none of the 30 guests knew one another, but most embraced when the night was over, Mr. Jackson recalled.
Russell! You had a studio on the Upper West Side! What happened!