Legal Structure
From: gpye (
Date: Fri, 12 May 95 10:54 CDT
Charles Ehrlich wrote:
> The Berkeley CoHousing on Sacramento Street is facing issues of how to
> choose the most appropriate legal structure for the ownership of the
> property. 

> The poster of this message did A LOT of searching through the CoHousing-L
> archives and delivered as much info to the group as he could find, but the
> group continues to feel a bit in the dark and hopes that others in
> the online CoHo community would be willing to share their current
> thoughts and feelings regarding the issue of weather to form a Condo
> versus a Co-Op legal ownership structure.
> What are the implications for obtaining mortgages?
> How does the legal structure influence interpersonal dynamics?
> If you could do it again, would you do it differently and why?
> Other concerns, issues, cavaets, etc.

Greetings!  I'm a member of a beginning cohousing group in Durham, NC.  
We are five "committed" families and two or three "interested."  We are 
currently wrestling with the issue of what type of structure our group 
should take before we advertise for new members.  We have done some 
research, both into Cohousing-L archives and with cohousing groups in our 
area, but there seem to be many possible avenues.  For instance, do we 
have a development group which is separate from the homeowner's 
association?  What are the differences between condo & co-op?  Should we 
legally incorporate as a partnership, non-profit, LLC or any of the other 
possibilities?  What are the advantages and disadvantages?  

Would love to hear some dialogue on the list about what other groups have 
done and how it is working.  If anyone has lengthy information in this 
area, feel free to e-mail me directly and later I can put a compilation 
of the answers on this list.  (I did notice on this list that the 
co-housing quarterly will have information in this ballpark in their next 
issue or two, but they come out only quarterly!)  :)

Thanks.  I'm enjoying reading the list.  It gives me (and our group) lots of 
ideas!  :)

Ginger W. Long
As-yet-unnamed Cohousing group, Durham, NC (we're deciding on a name soon)
gpye_Long [at]

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