Re: Financial Audit Question
From: rphilipdowds (
Date: Thu, 24 Oct 2019 07:25:23 -0700 (PDT)
Our household moved to Cornerstone in 2007, after it had been up and running 
about six years.  At the time,Cornerstone was paying a management company for 
“doing” our “books”, and the result was largely incomprehensible; we tried to 
inform ourselves by translating the company’s financial reports into our own 
spreadsheets.  We switched to another management company, which also maintained 
incomprehensible books.  In those years, we usually hired an accountant to do a 
simple audit, and the audit reports never seemed to match up with the 
management company reports in any particular way.

In 2009 we switched to maintaining our own records in Quickbooks, and dropped 
both the management company and the auditor.  We are both happier and richer.  
Enough members have regular access to the Quickbooks file and its reports that 
it's highly improbable we're suffering from any fraud or gross error.

Philip Dowds
Cornerstone Cohousing
Cambridge, MA
On Oct 17, 2019, 2:17 AM -0400, S. Kashdan <s_kashdan [at]>, wrote:
> Greetings,
> This is Sylvie Kashdan, Jackson Place Cohousing, urban Seattle, Washington, 
> built in 2001.
> I am writing to ask communities what their practices are around professional 
> financial audits.
> Here at Jackson Place Cohousing, our community does not meet the revenue 
> threshold that would mandate an annual formal financial audit in our state.
> Since we are below the level at which yearly audits are legally required, we 
> have the option to forego audits.
> We'd appreciate hearing how other similarly-situated cohousing communities 
> approach this. Even though you aren't mandated, do you still conduct a formal 
> audit annually or do you waive the annual audit some years and conduct them 
> other years? Do you have a set frequency, or are there specific events that 
> "trigger" a formal financial audit?
> Every year our finance team discusses whether or not to have a professional 
> audit, and then brings their recommendation to the whole group to make the 
> final decision for the year.
> So far we have had some professional audits, but not every year.
> We are wondering how other cohousing communities schedule professional audits.
> Cohousingly,
> Sylvie
> Sylvie Kashdan
> Community Outreach Liaison
> Jackson Place Cohousing
> 800 Hiawatha Place South
> Seattle, WA 98144
> info [at]<mailto:info [at] 
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