Re: Charge People as Households or Individuals
From: patjavcc (
Date: Wed, 12 Jul 2006 17:40:01 -0700 (PDT)
At JP Cohousing we based our membership fees by household and paid 7% of the 
estimated unit price as the equity membership fee (5% to qualifying low income 
households who also had the option of setting up a payment plan to reach their 
equity amount.) 
We offered interest incentives for all money contributed above the 7% equity 
All money related decisions were decided by household - but all 'living there' 
issues were decided by the individual.  We still use that method today - a year 
after move in.
Patti Lautner
JP Cohousing
Boston, MA
-----Original Message-----
From: beckyweaver [at]
To: cohousing-l [at]
Sent: Wed, 12 Jul 2006 6:47 PM
Subject: Re: [C-L]_ Charge People as Households or Individuals

Hi Emily, 
  We found it made the most sense to base our membership fees by household, 
since ultimately each household will purchase one house. It made record-keeping 
easier. Household membership also fluctuates, but a house is a house. There is 
also a precedent in standard Homeowner's Association (aka condo)  fees, which 
are assessed to each household regardless of the number of residents in the 
(although square footage can make a difference). 
  This setup feels unfair to single people compared to multi-income households. 
On the other hand, some single people have more disposable income than, say, a 
one-income family of four. Since in this case, as in so many, it's impossible 
be fair, we decided to make it simple. 
  We also scaled equity membership fees depending upon the expected size of 
homes. Those buying one-bedrooms have a lower fee than those buying 
three-bedrooms. The fees are loosely based upon expected home price. 
  When we are distributing the costs of an event, for example a training 
workshop with meals and housing, we charge per individual attending the event. 
  Becky Weaver
  Central Austin Cohousing/Kaleidoscope Village
  Austin, Texas

Richard and Emily <june227 [at]> wrote:

I am part of an emerging cohousing community in Richmond, Virginia. We are at 
the stage of possibly signing on with a developer. There is an initial 
assessment of our needs/liabilities/strengths, for this we are being charged a 
fee that we all agree is quite reasonable. 
Where we have diverging views is around whether to charge people per household 
(no matter the number of occupants), or as individuals. Has this issue come 
up?What have you all done about this? 

Thank you for your help!

-Emily Reusing
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