Common House Furnishings
From: Joani Blank (
Date: Sun, 4 Jun 2000 03:15:20 -0600 (MDT)
I don't remember if I'm exactly right, but if my memory serves, Katie
McCamant, common house designer extraordinaire, suggests that the dining
room be planned to serve 2/3 of the residents on a "regular" basis--don't
forget to count the kids--and easily expandable (folding tables and chairs
at least for the extras) up to the full number of folks who live there plus
guests for special occasions or for the occasional common meal when
everyone signs up to eat, or there happen to be a lot of guests at one
time.  If your developer put enough money in the budget to buy you common
house furniture right at the get go, you are lucky indeed. Many communities
furnish their common houses first with everyone's hand-me-downs, odds and
ends, etc. and live with that for a while while they are deciding what will
work best for them, and/or until they can afford new stuff if there's no
money in the initial budget for the furnishings.  I think it's a good idea
to live with folks' odds and ends for a few months EVEN IF there is money
in the development budget to pay for the CH furnishings.  Especially in the
case of  tables and chairs for the dining room, you can never be sure 'til
you try.  If there is development money for the furnishings, you can just
put it in a temporary reserve until you decide what will work best for you.  

Joani Blank 
Old Oakland CoHousing (that's Oakland, California)  

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