Re: Attracting younger families
From: Dick Margulis (
Date: Tue, 5 May 2020 07:24:19 -0700 (PDT)
On 5/5/2020 9:08 AM,Abe Ross <cohoyote [at]> wrote:
In reviewing the archives I see that several cohousing projects have
encountered difficulties attracting younger families.&#xA0; I also see that
the suggestions which have been made are anecdotal. Has anyone asked young
families who have joined cohousing communities what it is which attracted
them to cohousing?

I can tell you that in our current experience of marketing homes at Rocky Corner (Bethany CT), we have tremendous interest from young families. They see cohousing as a great way to raise kids as well as being good for themselves as young adults. The stumbling block is cost.

Even with 13 of our 30 units subsidized to be affordable, most young families do not have the resources to buy a cohousing unit. Some few do, and they're happy to purchase. But a lot of people have come close to buying only to find out they can't qualify for the mortgage they would need.

Of course, we're only seeing people who are interested in cohousing. I suppose there's a population of young millionaires who are too full of themselves to be interested. But we don't encounter them.

Another lesson about young families is that during the long years of forming the community, (a) they can't wait that long, because they have to find a bigger place to live NOW and a school district for their kids to enroll in NOW, not five years from now; and (b) they really do not have time to attend endless meetings, even if childcare is offered. They're too busy schlepping kids to tennis and swimming and karate and piano, etc., not to mention endless laundry, grocery shopping, and what have you that attend to young parenthood. So they don't really get embedded in the group very easily, no matter how attractive they find the idea.

Finally, if their kids are a little older, they don't want to subject them to the strain of changing to new school district if they're happy where they are.

Dick Margulis

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