From: Sharon Villines (
Date: Thu, 5 Feb 2004 09:19:29 -0700 (MST)
On 2/5/04 11:01 AM, "Linda Gluck/Treehouse" <treehouse [at]> wrote:

> Seeking information about what coho residents pay for maintenance fee, what
> it covers, and how many members share that cost?

A huge topic. Again this varies according to whether people are a lot
development  model where people are more responsible for things like their
own basement storage space, lawns, etc. or a condo model where all these
things are shared.

We are a "highrise" condo and town house mix so we have condo fees similar
to a traditional condominium. Fees cover gas and water for individual units,
the expenses for the commonhouse and common lawns, parking maintenance, etc.
We are currently in disagreement about "limited common elements" like decks,
walkways, shared basements, etc. Our Bylaws say individual homeowners are
responsible for "limited common elements" but this seems hugely
impracticable -- I am not about to be responsible for replacing the concrete
skywalk that 4 units and the guest room share and the community would be
stupid to trust me to do it!

One thing to consider is that it is cheaper to have centrally metered water,
gas, etc. because the utility company charges a fee for _each_ connection.
Many units may never use more than the minimum amount charged for -- this
varies from locality to locality. But then after the central meter is
installed one begins to wonder if so and so is using more than their share.
This was recently raised here since some units have gas fireplaces but most
others don't. Gas is centrally metered and paid for by the association. And
some would like to pay more and use more without their neighbors being

Personally I would like as much as possible to be included in the condo fee
because I believe that central negotiating and buying is more effective BUT
this also requires that your community have strongly shared values about
usage and maintenance. We have a large, new community and thus have very
widely divergent ideas about both usage and responsibility for shared

Some people are perceived to be what in grocery stores are called cherry
pickers -- they take what is on sale but don't pay full price for anything

Sharon Villines
Takoma Village Cohousing, Washington DC

Cohousing-L mailing list
Cohousing-L [at]  Unsubscribe  and other info:

Results generated by Tiger Technologies Web hosting using MHonArc.