Re: marketing Aria Cohousing in Denver to families
From: Beverly Jones Redekop (
Date: Thu, 29 Sep 2016 14:39:14 -0700 (PDT)
Some thoughts...

1.  Keep it affordable (maybe -- some families are not affected by this
need, some are).

2.  When you find yourself leaning towards units with two big bedrooms,
consider configuring the space for three smaller bedrooms instead.

3.  AVOID STACKED FLATS AT ALL COSTS!  Our ugliest conflicts have been the
result of larger units (1440 s.f. with three bedrooms) stacked above
smaller units (1000 s.f. two bedrooms).  Families live above empty-nesters,
and our side-to-side soundproofing works great, but the above & below
doesn't work much at all.  Noise leads to short tempers and nasty
comments.  It would have been so much better to have these units side by
side as stacked personal homes (the 1000 s.f. as 500 down and 500 up; the
1440 as 720 down and 720 up).  If you must have a few 1000 s.f. units all
on one level for accessibility, put a unit that is severely skewed towards
child-free households above, such as a tiny studio or one bedroom...or
common house storage or something.  You will be tempted to stack units to
save money, but it is the worst possible disaster you could ever inflict
upon yourselves....and aren't personal interior staircases cheaper than
public exterior staircases anyhow?

4. Share glimpses of positive intergenerational relationships via social
media.  (Even just posting your community dinner menu on Facebook gives a
glimpse of a miracle to a busy parent who is tired of cooking dinner every
single day.)

5.  Ask your seniors and empty-nesters why they want intergenerational
cohousing.  Remind them about mess and noise and non-intentional neighbours
(the parents choose to live in cohousing but the kids don't make a
choice).  Have them record  their reasons for wanting intergenerational
cohousing when it would be just as easy to build seniors cohousing.  Share
this document on your website for families to see!

6.  Parking on the perimeter is excellent, but include private gear garages
at each home so that people's "stuff" (bikes, kayaks, scooters, strollers,
carriages, garden tools, etc...) doesn't get strewn about. Strollers are
expensive and they get ruined when left outside on a porch.

On Thu, 29 Sep 2016 at 05:33 Alice Alexander <alicecohous [at]> wrote:

> Susan, good for you to be joining Aria Cohousing! Attracting families was a
> focus of one of the sessions at the Aging Better Together conference (which
> I believe you attended), led by Katie McCamant, which, to cut to the chase,
> advised that in all your marketing and communications, keep families in
> mind. This includes providing child care so parents can come to meetings,
> having events that cater to kids, marketing with pictures of families,
> being present like tabling at community events that would attract families.
> The Cohousing Association in our 2017 strategic plan is creating a new
> initiative "Young Families in Cohousing" which will focus on encouraging
> families to live in cohousing, and also supporting intergenerational
> communities in attracting families. So your query is right on schedule and
> I hope we can both learn from successful practices that may be posted here!
> Alice Alexander, Coho/US Executive Director
> On Thu, Sep 29, 2016 at 12:45 AM, Susan < [at]> wrote:
> >
> > After reading this list serve for years and dreaming of living in a
> > cohousing community for even longer, I will be moving from Oakland to
> > Denver in the late spring to join Aria Cohousing. I am looking for
> > suggestions for reaching out now to families with young children so that
> we
> > can be the multi-generational community we want to be. Any suggestions
> > specifically for the Denver area or generally for networking with
> families
> > would be greatly appreciated.
> > Thanks,
> > Susan Green
> > _________________________________________________________________
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> >
> >
> >
> >
> --
> Alice Alexander
> Executive Director
> [image: The Cohousing Association]
> _________________________________________________________________
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