Re: Common House Refridgerators
From: David Mandel (
Date: Wed, 15 Jan 1997 23:27:19 -0600
>To CoHousers With A Common House:
>We of Tierra Nueva CoHousing, aka Grell CoHousing Group, would like to know
>the capacity, dimensions, make and model of your common house
>refridgerators.  Also, How many people are they servicing or providing
>space for?  We are in the market for our refridgerator now and would
>appreciate any info you may have.  Thanks! Corrine of Tierra Nueva.

We have an average-sized regular residential fridge. We got it new about
two years ago, replacing a very old one that needed a bungie cord to close
and was donated by someone when we moved in. But even that served us OK.
Sometimes I think it would be nice to have a big, commercial one where we
could keep lots of stuff. Occasonally someone suggests we get a second
regular one and put it in the back of our pantry, where we had a used
freezer for a while. I think I would support that idea, but I seem to be in
the minority. It means that leftovers get taken home (for a nominal fee)
instead of stored, and sometimes it does get pretty crowded when there are
two or three meals scheduled on consecutive days and their respective teams
are buying stuff and loading up the fridge. But for the most part, it
serves our needs (43 adults, 31 children) quite well. We are spared the
loud noises that most commercial ones apparently make, our kitchen feels
more homey and less institutional, and we saved a heck of a lot of money,
which is important to a lot of us.

Most communities go big and commercial, it seems; maybe in the overall long
run there are advantages. But it certainly isn't the only way to go. So do
give it some thought before you leap in.

By the way, we also went the same route for cook stoves (two regular
residential ones, side by side, which gives us eight burners, a griddle and
two ovens) and a home-style dishwasher, though we paid a bit extra for a
quiet one. There are gripes about both -- big pots don't fit on the stove
very well and the dishwasher takes a long time. But I'm still not convinced
that the massive extra expense of fancy commercial stuff would have been so
much better. Especially those super-fast dishwashers. They're very noisy.

David Mandel, Southside Park, Sacramento

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