Re: Urban/Suburban/Rural decision at start?
From: OCC611ng (
Date: Tue, 9 Aug 2005 15:33:01 -0700 (PDT)
Hi Buzz:

   In the condominium model in which all the living units are sold as
pre-built homes,  nearness to places of employment is a prime factor in
determining the market value of the homes as well as the marketability of
the units among cohousers.  It can also be a strong determinant of the ages
of your members.

    Here in the Central Coast of California,  we are not within commuting
distance of any large city.  Jobs paying middle incomes are scarce.  We are
located in a small city and within commuting distances of two other small
cities.  Most of the high-paying jobs in the state are in Southern
California and in the San Francisco Bay Area, neither area being within
commuting distance.  We are not rural.  We are located in a pleasant
residential neighborhood near a large outdoor mall shopping center with huge
parking lots and many cars.  You might say that we are suburban but not
within the pull of a nearby urban center.

     This is a desirable area (picturesque wine country, nearby beach).
Relocating here is impossible for many young people because of lack of jobs
and the high price of housing.  This was a severe handicap in marketing our
units.  Our construction costs were high and we were concerned that we would
have to sell the units for less than it cost to build them.  We had to cut
corners (value engineering) in order to keep the asking prices from being
too high for the market.  We barely made the quota of pre-sold units that
the developer asked for before agreeing to start construction.

     Looking at your market area is vital in determining the success of your

Norm Gauss
Oak Creek Commons
Paso Robles, CA

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Buzz Harris" <buzz [at]>
To: <Cohousing-L [at]>
Sent: Monday, August 08, 2005 2:31 AM
Subject: [C-L]_ Urban/Suburban/Rural decision at start?

> Hi folks.
> I am involved with a new cohousing group starting up in the greater Boston
> area (I was involved with Mosaic Commons - Hi Catya! - but the land that
> they found is, sadly, too far away from work, etc. for my honey and me).
> While my partner and I are open to living in cohousing in urban, suburban,
> or rural settings, some people have strong preferences for one or another
> of these possibilities and/or for specific areas of a state.
> My question is this - in the experience of those who have gone down this
> road before, how important is it for a cohousing group to clarify early
> where it wants to search for land (urban, suburban, rural)?  Or is it
> important at all?
> Thanks,
> Buzz
> ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
> Buzz Harris
> Writer, activist, & political researcher
> buzz_harris [at]
> ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
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