Fwd: Resales and Rentals
From: Kathryn-Jane Hazel (k.j.hazelshaw.ca)
Date: Thu, 20 Feb 2020 13:23:57 -0800 (PST)
Hi Ann:

I’m the chair of the Public Relations Team at Pacific Gardens Cohousing 
Community in Nanaimo, B.C. The PR Team looks after sales and rentals here.

To answer your questions:

1.      We have not used any the material from your website, but have developed 
our own - which shares some similarities!

2.      We are in the process of instituting sales and rental agreements for 
our cohousing community. There have been some concerns about charging a fee for 
sales and rentals assistance, which we are currently exploring through our 
consensus process.  In the meantime we have had two sellers who are donating 
the sales fee to the community anyway, and we need to make a determination as 
to whether those funds will go into our operating budget or a community chest 
for special projects.  It is a work in progress!

3.      We ask potential members to attend one of our many social events, and 
also a meeting, preferably a community meeting.  We also ask that they 
participate in what we call a cohousing conversation, an informal discussion of 
expectations that also provides prospective members with the opportunity to ask 
questions about what it is like to live in cohousing. We try to get a 
representative sample of community members - young, old, single, married, with 
children, renters, long-time and new members. We’re still fine-tuning the 
process, but we’ve found it generally works well and is appreciated by those 
exploring living in our community.

4.      Many of these initiatives were instituted recently.  To give some 
background:  our community was built during the boom of 2007-2008, and then we 
had to sell during the recession.  As a result, for many years we had unsold 
units we had to rent out to survive financially.  It is only within the last 
two years that the final units were sold, and we have started, as Diana Leafe 
Christian says, to “narrow the gateway” to living at Pacific Gardens, so that 
people who purchase here are a good fit for the community. Before we did this, 
we had some unfortunate experiences with people who, on the surface seemed like 
they would make good members of the community, but because we did not have 
something like our cohousing conversations to clarify expectations, created a 
great deal of conflict and dissension and eventually left.

It’s been a tough learning experience.  Happily now, though, because we have a 
better screening process, plus a new vision and mission statement, those who 
choose to live here have a better understanding of what to expect - and 
willingly accept it. We even have the beginnings of a short waiting-list - a 
first for us!


Chair, Public Relations Team

Kathryn-Jane Hazel
#210-347 Seventh St.
Nanaimo, B.C.
V9R 1E3
k.j.hazel [at] shaw.ca <mailto:k.j.hazel [at] shaw.ca>

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