Re: 1 Bedroom unit at Cornerstone
From: Diana Carroll (
Date: Wed, 29 Jan 2020 06:20:34 -0800 (PST)
To be fair, this is not a cohousing issue.  Cornerstone is located in a
very popular neighborhood in the very expensive Boston, MA metro area. I
did a quickie search for one-bedroom condos nearby and $550k is fairly
typical (on the high end of average). This IS's a HUGE
issue in the Boston metro area, that everyone is aware of. But it doesn't
reflect cohousing per se being expensive. :(

It's why we (Mosaic Commons, Berlin, MA) developed out in the boonies -- no
way people most our group could have afforded to acquire land closer to

(Not that WE are affordable either, other than our few mandated subsidized
units. Sigh.)


On Tue, Jan 28, 2020 at 11:16 AM Sharon Villines via Cohousing-L <
cohousing-l [at]> wrote:

> > We are pleased to announce that the lovely one-bedroom apartment at
> Cornerstone Village Cohousing is on the market at a lower price: $555,000.
> This 575-square foot apartment is on the first floor.
> No reflection on Cornerstone at all, but this is an example of why I chose
> “Sustainable Cohousing” as the name for the effort to focus on the
> development of low-cost cohousing.
> These prices are not sustainable for at least half of the kinds of people
> we attracted to cohousing 10-20 years ago.
> I am working on a blog post now on income levels in the US. _Half_ the
> population earns _less_ than an average income of $30,000 per person
> annually. That is derived from indirect figures which I will explain, but
> even if these figures are off a few thousand on the low side, cohousing as
> we know it is not sustainable.
> This price is $965 per square foot. To purchase this apartment would
> require an annual income of $1,397,000 using the guideline of 2.5 x the
> price of the house to qualify for a mortgage. Or someone has to have a lot
> of money just sitting around. And probably rich parents. If my calculations
> are off—very possible—please let me know.
> A $30,000 income would qualify for a $75,000 mortgage.
> Since utilities and services are paid with additional monthly condo fees,
> adjusting the price to give credit for cohousing extras is not very
> relevant.
> This is expensive. Yes, it is Boston. These are Manhattan prices — though
> Cornerstone is much nicer than this apartment for $555,000 in Manhattan
> would be.
> Think about it.
> Sharon
> ——
> Sharon Villines, Washington DC
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