Re: Cohousing outreach lesson for the day: Be reachable
From: Sharon Villines (
Date: Tue, 5 Jan 2010 21:18:50 -0800 (PST)

On Jan 5, 2010, at 3:05 AM, Raines Cohen wrote:

So many communities I visit fail to update their websites or points of
contact once the units are sold or they move in.

And even before units are sold!!! The website is your most important point of referral. Even people who contact you directly will refer to your website later. It becomes more important everyday. it's your public face.

Please remember that people do not know where you are. Put an address on it -- including the _state_.

* Focus on People, Not Property

This is my standard response to this phrase but since it has appeared again, I'll respond again. I understand the sentiment and intention behind the focus on people and not property, but for those with few options, housing is a primary need. Reducing a concern for housing to "property," misses their needs as people.. The biggest word in "cohousing" is HOUSING.

Busy single parents on limited budgets with kids in tow need the promise of a house/apt before even beginning to talk about playgrounds and meals. You can potluck your hearts out but if they don't have the $20,000 you need them to put down or the means to support a $300,000 mortgage, they don't want to waste their time.

So please tell people what they need to know and don't shut them out because they insist on knowing about sizes and costs before they will come to an orientation or talk face-to-face. They don't want their hearts broken while you go on about people.

A rant, but we who are fortunate forget about this in our desire to focus on the wonders of cohousing -- for those who can afford it.

Sharon Villines
Takoma Village Cohousing, Washington DC

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