More Welcoming and Affordable than a Nursing Home: Paris Welcomes its First Senior Co-Living Community

Two vast neighboring apartments in the heart of the new Chapelle International district, in the 18th arrondissement of Paris. At first glance, they are no different from the hundreds of other properties managed by the RIVP landlord in the area. However, on the first floor of 23 rue Pierre-Mauroy, six elderly people with loss of autonomy will move in this month of December. This is the first senior shared housing in Paris opened by the start-up CetteFamille, which defines itself as a “facilitator of shared life” and manages many of these structures in the provinces.

A more convivial and less costly solution than a nursing home. Especially in the capital, where a place in these facilities costs an average of €3,768 – after social aid deductions – compared to €2,287 in the Chapelle International shared housing. There is a strong demand in the capital.

In Paris, where the lack of places is particularly acute – only 41 for every 1,000 seniors in need – the young company aims to fill the gap. “In fact, many of the residents housed in our homes throughout France have expressed their desire to come and live in Paris, often because they are from here or their parents live in the Île-de-France region,” details a spokesperson from CetteFamille.

On this particular Monday, several people signed up to visit the shared housing. On the first floor of the building, they discovered two 80-square-meter apartments bathed in light, each with three bedrooms, a kitchen, a bathroom adapted for residents with reduced mobility, and a large living room to relax, have lunch, and gather.

An alternative to nursing homes or traditional retirement homes, shared housing allows seniors to live independently while being safe and accompanied 7 days a week by a team of life assistants present from 7 am to 10 pm. A bracelet connected to an emergency call center also allows them to contact emergency services if needed.

“The idea is that the free choice of the elderly is respected,” explains an employee of CetteFamille. “They choose, including their waking and sleeping hours, decide on their menus based on their tastes, as well as the organization of the house, the activities that can be organized there, and of course the layout of their room. They can even bring their own furniture or their pets. Everything is done so that everyone can experience the joys and warmth of family life.”

In an effort to “reduce the mental burden” of the residents and their caregivers, the life assistants and CetteFamille team handle all administrative tasks related to the seniors’ care, as well as organizing and managing shared life.

At Chapelle International, the start-up claims that the elderly will not only benefit from “landscaped areas to walk at the foot of the building and nearby shops, including a tea room, but also from public transportation serving the area.” If the project on Rue Pierre-Mauroy is successful, other shared housing initiatives should be developed in the capital.

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