Theory of Membership Fees [was Setting up new membership fees for Friends and neighbors in Lakeland FL
From: Sharon Villines (
Date: Tue, 4 Dec 2018 10:47:48 -0800 (PST)
I would like to see a discussion of the various theories of membership fees. 
How does one method of charging fees affect commitment and support community 

What is the effect of charging a monthly fee just for membership in the group? 

Is there any value in allowing people to hang on forever without committing? 
How long?

Should early committers receive proportionately greater discounts on prices 
than those who join, for example, 2 years later? 

What does it mean when people who join relatively close to move-in to have the 
same choice of units as those who joined a year before?

What membership fee schedule best emphasizes the reality of cohousing as a 
financial as well as a social commitment?

What fees “should” be refundable? Why?

I ask these questions because decisions like this have both social and 
financial ramifications and it is the nature of cohousing that decisions have 
effects on the community in both ways. Decisions are never just social or just 

Sharon Villines
Takoma Village Cohousing, Washington DC

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