Affordable cohousing
From: Sharon Villines (
Date: Tue, 3 Apr 2001 07:16:01 -0600 (MDT)
> What have folks out there
> done to try to make their cohousing communities affordable to a wide range
> of incomes?  Have you worked with city agencies or non-profits?

After a few weeks of marathon meetings and emails and calls to maintenance
people, I'm not sure that cohousing can ever be "affordable" because it
takes so much time.

I'm sure it gets better once patterns are established but property
maintenance is a bitch. Then you add people maintenance on top of that. Then
dream maintenance. Then two kitchens, two living rooms, ....

You really have to want to do this. Which means the group members themselves
have to make the project affordable. It isn't something an outside entity
can do. The decisions and the time invested have to come from individual
members of the group, functioning as individuals and as a group.

It takes a lot of time and a lot of learning. Everything has to be
researched -- seen in order to be believed.

Sharon Villines
Takoma Village Cohousing, Washington DC
Which is in the 5th month of sort of moved in and hasn't figured out how to
both work full time to pay the mortgage _and_ keep the commonhouse clean or
the trash people to put the dumpster in the right place or the electrician
to show up as scheduled to put in the big kitchen dishwasher or the green to
drain somewhere other than the townhouse basements. There aren't even enough
hours in the day for all the teams to meet much less time to make any

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