Shanghai-based Future Land Development has set its sights on Hong Kong’s co-living spaces. The Chinese developer, which builds homes in 40 cities across the mainland, said on Wednesday it has invested around HK$500-HK$600 million this year in two residential and commercial projects each. The residential projects will be turned into co-living spaces aimed at the city’s college students and young professionals who are looking for affordable rents, modern environment and more shared spaces. “We are just starting to test the market,” said Kenny Chan, company secretary and executive director at Future Land Development. Co-living the new norm for young professionals priced out of Hong Kong’s property market Hong Kong’s sky high rents have created an opportunity for co-living property projects – small rooms built around communal living and cooking areas, as a viable and affordable option for millennials. Chan said the company is bullish on Hong Kong’s housing rental market especially small-scale projects and expects its co-living projects to yield up to 9 per cent a year. The first co-living project, which is located close to The Hong Kong Polytechnic University in Kowloon, is set to be completed by the first quarter of 2018. The 20-storey building will consist of more than 100 units, open spaces and retail shops on the lower floors, with Future Land owning 80 per cent of the project. The other co-living project is in Sai Ying Pun in west Hong Kong island. An commercial building in Mong Kok and an industrial building in Kwun Tong are the company’s projects in the city. Rather than buying and holding a project on its own, Future Land has partnered with its unit Future Land Resources Capital Group – a Hong Kong investment firm acquired by the developer earlier this year, for its property investments in the city, said Chan. All the purchases will be conducted by Future Land Resources Capital while Future Land will only serve as an equity investor and will not participate in the development. Still, investments in Hong Kong only account for a very small part of the company’s business. Future Land’s contracted home sales on the mainland reached 89 billion yuan (US$13.4 billion) in the first 10 months, already surpassing its full year target of 85 billion yuan, according to data from China Real Estate Information Corporation. Chinese developer Future Land’s US$650 million privatisation bid rejected by shareholders Last month, Future Land chairman, Jiangsu-born billionaire Wang Zhenhua’s HK$5.1 billion (US$650 million) bid to take the Hong Kong-listed firm private due to the undervalued share price, failed to get enough votes from shareholders and failed. Chan said the company does not intend to restart the privatisation plan.