Re: Cohousing-L Digest, Vol 121, Issue 30
From: Douglas G. Larson (
Date: Fri, 28 Feb 2014 07:09:15 -0800 (PST)

<Does your community have an associate membership policy that?s been in
effect for at least two or three years? In my community, we don't have such
a policy yet, but would like to know what other <communities have done to
formalize welcoming relationships with neighbors as well as former owners
and renters. Here are some questions we have:

<Do your associate members pay a one-time or annual fee per individual or

<If there is a fee, what does the fee entitle them to?

<Is there a screening process used for people wanting to become associate

<Can associate members participate in work parties, cooking, etc., and if
so, do you have them sign a liability waiver?

<Are they welcome to attend your meetings, and if so, do they participate in
discussion and decision-making? 

<Have problems arisen with your policy or is it working well?

Here at Songaia we have had an associate member policy for several years. I
don't recall exactly when we adopted it but it was at least 4 years ago. It
may have been 5 or 6 years ago.  

We spent many, many hours drafting and discussing our policy taking about a
year to do so.  We have 3 levels of associates with renters being a 4th
Each level carries a fee with it though for level 1, the lowest and most
restrictive level (with the fewest privleges), we ask for a donation. Each
higher level carries higher fees and more rights, privileges and
responsibilities that go with it. 

The full details of our policy are too complex to type here. I can send you
a copy if you are interested. 

As for problems, we have had a few, though I don't recall the nature of them
just now. They were small problems as I recall. 

We revising the policy now, though that is because we are adopting a larger
structure to encompass not only Songaia but out two neighboring communities.
The most significant parts of the revision have to do with renters. I don't
recall all of the proposed revisions just now. 

We have quite a few associate members. I don't know the exact number but its
over 20. Of that number only about 7 or 8 come around on a regular basis.
The rest come occasionally.

Douglas Larson
Songaia Cohousing,
Bothell, Washington

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