Re: Help! Will this cohousing promotional plan work?
From: Raines Cohen (
Date: Mon, 19 Jan 2004 15:19:55 -0700 (MST)
On 1/19/04 1:01 PM, Sharon Villines <sharon [at]> wrote:

>If the Cohousing Network maintained a real list of people actively 
>looking for cohousing it would be  good list to mail to -- otherwise 
>there just is no list worth the time.

The Cohousing Association of the U.S. (Coho/US, formerly TCN) does 
precisely that. We've been trimming off old/returned/"no longer 
interested" names, yet we have a DB of 5000 households living in and/or 
on the market for cohousing. Because openings at specific communities / 
in specific regions are so few and far between, there's not a "market" in 
the commodified housing-market sense of the term, and someone who was 
interested last year may have gone ahead and bought a single-family house 
since and might not be ready to buy right now, but we try to capture 
people when.

We're setting up mechanisms for groups to supply contact info for members 
willing to share their info (they can choose whether they want their info 
shared or just for Coho/US mailings, and whether they want to receive 
info in the mail or just electronically), and for groups to tie their 
websites directly into ours so that info requests can go into a 
centralized database, with less work for the group contact, less spam all 
around, and a single place where sellers and builders and 
community-formers can go look.

Oak Creek Commons in Paso Robles, CA, has been actively using our 
national list and other lists... with sufficient success that they kept 
on doing it for several years during their development process. Other 
communities have done list rentals on an individual basis when particular 
households have units for sale.

The classified advertisements on our website, , 
remain popular spots for people to look, so maintaining a presence there 
is a minimal step you can take; it also makes sense to do regional/local 
targeting of community lists a la Craig's List, , to have a PR strategy that gets into local 
papers, and to think about who you're trying to reach and where they go 
for information/connections. There are professionals in the cohousing 
industry who can help with these specific areas.


Raines Cohen <my initials,2,dash,coho,dash,L at my first name .com>

  Member, Swan's Market Coho [Oakland, CA] <>
Site of a great "Settlers of Cataan" potluck yesterday.

  Secretary, Berkeley [CA] Cohousing
Working on a proposal to do some shared wiring.

  Supporter, East Bay Cohousing <>
Recruiting at the Cohousing Co. slide show in Berkeley this Wednesday.

  Boardmember, Coho/US <>
Thanking all those who supported us in 2003 -- why not be one of the 
first in 2004?

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