Re: Alternative financing
From: Sharon Villines (
Date: Wed, 22 Oct 2014 08:41:03 -0700 (PDT)
On Oct 22, 2014, at 10:43 AM, John Goldberg <johngoldberg [at]> 

> Many cohousing communities put a high priority on home ownership vs. renting, 
> and on residents doing chores rather than paying for them to be done. I would 
> like to know if there are successful cohousing communities that have more 
> renters than owner and/or pay for many chores to be done.

We have owners who have leased their units or rented for a period of months. 
We've had very good success with renters being as fully involved in the 
community as owners. There is really no difference. I would encourage long term 
rentals, however, because it takes time for people to become familiar and know 
how to participate and pitch in on workshare.

We have an associate member status. They are like full members except there are 
a few legal decisions, like amending the bylaws, on which they can participate 
in the discussion but can't object to the decision.

It is still difficult to have new people and get them educated and acclimated. 
It isn't a small task and needs focus. We have buddies for new people plus 
after move-in orientations.

And it is wear and tear on the walls, doors, etc. I now know why condos charge 
$150 move-in and move-out fees. For one second floor unit that has had several 
changes in ownership and rentals, the wooden stairs of pressure treated wood 
and are quite worn (round edges) and need sealing again only 2 years later. The 
rest are fine.

Note that it isn't the owners or the renters who move in and out, its the 
moving company. Or if the owners and renters move themselves, it's 
inexperienced people. It isn't easy to avoid damaging something.

Sharon Villines, Washington DC
"The truth is more important than the facts." Frank Lloyd Wright

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