|Re: Seattle group seeks property for co-housing||<– Date –> <– Thread –>|
|From: Craig Ragland (craigraglandgmail.com)|
|Date: Thu, 24 May 2007 09:21:20 -0700 (PDT)|
Hi Jordan Are you sure you're intending to create a cohousing community? Or is that a label you've selected to make your quest more palatable? This page from the Coho/US website has the "classic" six criteria: http://www.cohousing.org/overview.aspx Are you looking to create on a neighborhood level? From your description, it sounds like there may be some active shared economy? Possibly, a better description of the shared housing you seek is a large Cooperative Household? A Collective? Our community, Songaia Cohousing (near Seattle) operated as two shared households (next door to each other) for almost 10 years while we built the resources, plans, and community to construct a 13 unit cohousing community (on our 10.6 acres). For the last few years that we spent as a shared household, we stopped renting to people who were not committed to the cohousing project and we set up four "virtual private apartments" within the two houses. We had extensive common spaces, including most of what is now our common house. The apartments were not physically separated by doors, but by our practices/norms... for example, other community members would call out before coming down the hallway that defined my family's space (3 small bedrooms, 2 baths & a T-shaped hallway). Sure, we could have installed an extra door, but that would have been wasted effort as we focused on the new homes we ultimately built on the property. Today, there are dozens of cooperative households in Seattle. Some rent and some own their houses and other dwellings where they have created their communities. Most of these communities are in the exact neighborhoods that you list as being the most desirable for your group. A number of these communities have extensive inter-connections. Some have existed for many years. I believe your best path to finding a suitable property is by networking with these folks... on occasion, some of these communities have "lost" their houses - their landlords have sold the houses out from under them. In a few cases, the households have moved to other buildings. In some cases, these communities have occupied more than one adjoining house, as they've expanded. Here are the FIC Directory listings for several communities (mostly in the Seattle neighborhoods you mention) which currently occupy buildings similar to what you seek: http://directory.ic.org/records/?action=view&page=view&record_id=20064 http://directory.ic.org/records/?action=view&page=view&record_id=20044 http://directory.ic.org/records/?action=view&page=view&record_id=2239 http://directory.ic.org/records/?action=view&page=view&record_id=20271 http://directory.ic.org/records/?action=view&page=view&record_id=20042 http://directory.ic.org/records/?action=view&page=view&record_id=5579 I've visited all of these and there are really savvy folks living in them, many of whom might help you network to achieve what you seek. I really don't understand why you think you are "asking for too much," Or that there is any real possibility "it will never happen." This type of messaging may not be the best approach as you reach out to prospective sellers, even when you state that you are "pre-financed." Similarly, your website reference to yourself as "crazy hippie kids" - which doesn't inspire confidence. There are many properties which would seem to meet your criteria on the open market in Seattle. Here's a simple search for Seattle properties with 5+ bedrooms and 4+ bathrooms in Seattle: http://homes.realtor.com/search/searchresults.aspx?ctid=910&bd=6&bth=8&typ=7&sid=a26aadbcdb3342d0bbd7f5b9bfe2b6c7&sdir=1&sby=2 It lists 159 properties ranging from a $274K 2-unit property to a $15.5M mansion on 3/4 acre. I have no doubt that this list includes several properties in the neighborhoods you desire. Have you explored this conventional path? Is part of your (unstated) criteria that the property must be selling for a price that is significantly below its market value? Or that the seller must be willing to owner-finance under atypical terms? Anyway, here's some info on digital resources which may be of use to you: This Cohousing Listserv has relatively few of us in the Seattle area and many hundreds that are scattered all over the world. There are other local, online resources which might be more helpful to you in your quest: NICA (Northwest Intentional Communities Assocation) http://www.ic.org/nica/ has been helping people interested in community and communities for years. It's annual summer gathering in late June is at a property owned by the Goodenough Community, which tried and failed to build a larger complex similar to what you described. You might consider attending to network with others of us who are most active in the local communities movement. NWCommunities listserv http://lists.riseup.net/www/info/nwcommunities currently has 199 subscribers who are mostly in the NW and are interested in a broader swath of community than just cohousing. Seattle Wiki on Seattle Coop Houses: http://seattle.wikia.com/wiki/List_of_cooperative_residences has more info of potential use. I wish you well in your quest... Craig Ragland Member: Songaia Cohousing, Fellowship for Intentional Community Board Member: Coho/US ------------------------------ Date: Tue, 22 May 2007 22:07:12 -0700 From: "Jordan Schwartz" <coho [at] hive-mind.com> Subject: [C-L]_ Seattle group seeks property for co-housing We've got the people, we've got the financing, we've got the agreements, we've got the will...we're missing the right property. :( A group of us have been looking to buy an apartment building or large multi-family house to set up a co-housing home,. If you don't have what we're looking for but know someone who might, please forward this to them. I put up a web page that explains our quest in more detail at http://www.hive-mind.com/coho/. Please forward! Do you have a roughly 6,000+ sqft large house, multiplex or apartment building in Seattle you would consider selling? Group of eight+ looking for a home. We're pre-financed. We are a close group of friends who have worked together, traveled together, camped together, painted together, built together and lived together, and now we're ready to settle down together. There's one child in our group so far, and many aunts and uncles. Our family wants a place to call home. Will you sell it to us? I know what you're thinking. You're asking for too much, it will never happen. And maybe you're right. But my mother taught me that you're much more likely to get what you want if you ask. So let me tell you exactly what we're looking for. - In Seattle, ideally in the Capitol Hill, Central District, North Beacon, Wallingford, Ravenna, University District neighborhoods. - 6,000+ square feet (or expandable to that size). We want common space, private space, work space, art space, storage space. - Ideally, subdividable into 5 or more separate units, but with a large common space. We're ready to do some remodeling. - A yard for a vegetable garden and for kids to go dig up worms and build tree houses and pick dandelions. It's a lot to ask for, I know. If you have something that sort of resembles what we want, go ahead and contact us at coho [at] hive-mind.com! Maybe we can make it work. Thanks! Jordan
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