Re: Per Household or per person?
From: Diana Carroll (
Date: Tue, 19 Mar 2013 07:59:06 -0700 (PDT)
Note that apportionment of costs is hugely different during development and
after move-in.

Lots of people including me have weighed in regarding condo fees (that is,
post-move-in expense sharing.)  This is not relevant to the original
question posed.

The way we at Mosaic Commons covered costs during development (up to the
point where we got a construction loan) was that contributions were
voluntary.  They were credited towards the final cost of your unit.  So no
one was "giving" money to the group....they were essentially "loaning"
money that would be paid back at purchase.  Therefore the question of
individual v. household was irrelevant.  We offered incentives (such as a
very attractive interest rate) to encourage people to contribute.  But of
course we needed more money than came easily...toward the end, members had
to dig REALLY deep (taking out second mortgages, cashing in retirement
accounts and so on) to get us over the hump.  Again, it became a matter of
who had the money, not whether it was by individual or household.

(We did bookkeeping by "household" in the sense that a household was the
people buying a unit together, and their contributions would be credited
toward that unit.)

People who were not yet committed to joining/buying a unit but who wanted
to participate in the group (come to meetings and events and so on) were
asked to pay a nominal membership fee to help cover meeting expenses and
the like...I don't remember if we did that by individual or household,
because the amount was so small in the context of our $20M project.

*IMPORTANT CAVEAT*: This email only answers the question of what we did
regarding household v. individual.  I am NOT (NOT!!!!) suggesting you
follow our advice for how to structure your finances during development.
 We ended up having much pain and suffering and loss of money due to our
construction lender blocking our plan to credit unit purchases to early
contributors.  It's a long sad tale and not relevant to the question posed,
but I didn't want anyone jumping up and down and going "Aha, that's a great
plan".  If we knew then what we know now... *sigh*


On Mon, Mar 18, 2013 at 11:12 PM, John Leet <jwleet [at]> wrote:

> We are Panama Cohousing Village, in the formation stage in  Panama.  One
> of our member is single and is objecting strenuously to paying "twice as
> much" as those of us in coupled relationships for our expenses relating to
> marketing for new members.
> Can you share with us what costs you assess per household, and what costs
> you asses per person?
> John Leet
> jwleet [at],
> _________________________________________________________________
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