Re: Valuation for Common Facilities use - Adjacent Neighbors & Sharing
From: Jessie Kome (
Date: Wed, 30 Sep 2009 05:35:59 -0700 (PDT)

We have been struggling with that question at Eastern Village Cohousing for a while without coming to closure on it. Our situation is complicated because we have 11 condos in the same building that are not part of the cohousing community. Personally, I think the path to a solution is to look at what services you offer and to compare that to the services and the fee structures for local country clubs, community centers, and local rec centers. What do those places offer that you do not? What do you offer that they do not? What is their market? What is your "market"?

Then look at how your community benefits from what the extra users offer. Do they increase the richness of your culture? Do their activities make you all happier? More stressed? Do any resources get used up because they participate? Do they help improve or maintain the physical resources?

Also, consider what will it cost the community in time and money to handle additional financial transactions? How does that balance with the above? How high a value is hospitality for your community? Have you been thinking of the off-site folks as guests in a way? How do they think of themselves and how does that affect their willingness to commit to pay money or time for use of the community's resources?

Just talking through the questions above will get you a long way toward knowing what to do. As you can see, I don't think the question really has all that much to do with money.

Jessie Handforth Kome
Eastern Village Cohousing
Silver Spring, Maryland
"Where the strong and clever among us just figured out how to get the Bike Lids up to the green roof, and one of our members just got called the "Jeff Bezos of kosher free-range organic meat."

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