Why not?
From: Jerry Callen (jcallenThink.COM)
Date: Fri, 12 Nov 93 17:10 CST
   Date: Fri, 12 Nov 93 16:53 CST
   From: Elise Matthesen <EMATTHESEN [at] MADMAX.MPR.ORG>

   Ah, Jerry Callen's comment on wanting cohousing because it
   was a different type of community gets at an important piece of
   context for me, I think, and for many of us.

   I guess I'm looking at the affordability issues because I already
   *have* the luxury of a "different community" - several of them,
   in fact - that feel close and supportive and unlike the
   distancing commonly practiced and reflected in how single-family
   housing is usually built.

So do I. But there's no substitute for having friends right out the back
(or front, or side) door. We have two small children; for a while, we were
close friends with two of the four housholds immediately around us. The
utility of taking the kids next door on a moment's notice so an errand can
be run is NOT to be taken lightly! Likewise the fact that our kids had
playmates that weren't a car ride away.

Alas, they moved.

In cohousing, such turnover wouldn't leave one stranded, as our neighbors'
departure has.

   For some others, priorities differ.  Sure, I want the community
   and am willing to work to make it happen with the right people, 
   but if I can't afford $175,000 for a cohousing unit, but *could*
   afford $80,000 for an old Victorian with some like-minded people
   (like the ones I've been living with for 5 years or so), I know
   what choice I'll make. On-site expertise already lives in my
   house; one member is a glass etcher/craftsman and in high demand
   by some of those $200,000+ sites, and there are other skills
   around and available. A big house might just be the scale we
   ought to work with, though I don't know if two households can
   be called "co-housing".  But whatever works.......

I've lived in group houses, and they are TOO close for me, especially now
that I have kids. In group houses, that closeness can make for serious
trauma if there's any turnover. I believe that cohousing offers more

But, as you say, whatever works.

-- Jerry Callen

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