Re: Participation Agreement / Tracking work hours
From: Kay Wilson (
Date: Mon, 18 Jun 2007 23:09:04 -0700 (PDT)
We have considered such a fee, but then the problem/challenge
becomes: how do we track people's time without generating an
accounting nightmare?

I have read some prior discussion on this issue, and it sounded
like the group that had the best system used a computer program
written by one of the residents.

Has anyone else come up with a simple time-tracking system that
works? (A time-clock is simple, but is not an attractive option

(My own feeling is that time tracking would just create issues of
equity: If it takes one person 1 hour to weed a planting bed, but
takes someone else 2-3 hours to weed the same bed, does the fast
person get credit for 1 hour and the slow person get credit for 3
hours? And does 2 hours writing minutes equal 2 hours of weeding?
And so on...)

Kay Wilson
Bartimaeus Cohousing

-----Original Message-----
From: Rob Sandelin [mailto:floriferous [at]]
Sent: Thursday, June 14, 2007 9:27 PM
To: 'Cohousing-L'
Subject: Re: [C-L]_ Participation Agreement

One way to set up participation is to bill everybody a monthly
fee, then refund it to those who do whatever the work requirement
is. That
way, those that do not, pay more, and the money can then be used
to hire
outside help for bigger or less desirable maintained tasks.

Rob Sandelin

-----Original Message-----
From: mbarrett [mailto:mbarrett [at]]
Sent: Thursday, June 14, 2007 7:04 PM
To: Cohousing-L
Subject: Re: [C-L]_ Participation Agreement

I see a couple of  possible problems in including specific
requirements" into condo bylaws as David reports.
1) Lenders such as banks, and insurance companies are generally
conservative and if they should get to read "strange" stuff they
may turn
you down.
2) Rquirements are essentially meaningless unless they are
enforceable i.e.
backed up by sanctions.  Are you going to evict non-compliant
residents - or
We have recently drafted a document titled "Expectations, Hopes
Opportunities" to give to prospective residents which at least
makes clear
what we expect and hope for, though without any legal muscle.

Michael Barrett
Shadowlake Village,
Blacksburg, VA   - from whence last weekend about 20 adults and
22 children
went camping together for two nights in a State Park in the

------ Original Message -----
From: "David Heimann" <heimann [at]>
To: <cohousing-l [at]>
Sent: Thursday, June 14, 2007 9:34 PM
Subject: Re: [C-L]_ Participation Agreement

> Hello,
>  We have a lot of what's included in this agreement in our
> i.e., it is required rather than voluntary.
>  A buyer must go through an orientation and sign a statement
> they have done so, understand what the community is about, and
agree to
> abide by the condo docs (which include a good amount of
> clauses).
>  With respect to (1) and (3), residents are *required* to
> participate in General Meetings and committee meetings, and to
> in the maintenance of the property (i.e., a work requirement).
>  This probably has to be done during development and be
> incorporated into the condo docs.  At least that's what we did.
>  All the best in incorporating this participation!
> Regards,
> David Heimann
> Jamaica Plain Cohousing
> Date: Wed, 13 Jun 2007 09:50:57 -0700
> From: Joani Blank <joani [at]>
> Subject: [C-L]_ Participation Agreement
> To: cohousing-l [at]
> Message-ID: < [at]>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"
> In general I think that ya' gotta get people to buy in at the
> beginning to the notion that the residents--all of them, not
> owners--agree to take responsibility for both managing and
> maintaining the community.  Some communities have a
> agreement.  I'm attaching ours (Swan's Market Cohousing,
Oakland, CA)
> that is technically voluntary, but there is an expectation that
> people will sign it.
> It's better if it is presented to people before ar at the time
> become members of the group, way before construction.  (I was
> "required" to sign it when I first joined the group at Doyle
> Cohousing where I used to live, before that group realized that
> couldn't legally make it mandatory.)  I initiated having one at
> Swan's Market where I live now after we had lived here a year
or two,
> and not everyone signed it, though most did.    (I've posted
> this before, and asked people to contact me to have me send it
> them, but since it is short, I'm appending it here.)
> Swan's Market Cohousing
> Participation Agreement
> [Note:  Signing this agreement is voluntary, and it is not
> binding]
> I live (or plan to live) in the Swan's Market Cohousing
community.  I
> am aware of the nature, goals, character and history of Swan's
> Cohousing and I intend to maintain and enhance its sense of
> and cooperation.
> If I lease or sell my unit, my tenant(s) or buyer(s) will be
> an orientation and encouraged to sign this participation
agreement. I
> support the Community's aim of cooperative living; I agree to
> participate in activities of the Community on a regular basis,
as follows:
> 1. Management of our community through the Homeowners
Association. I
> will play an ongoing role in the Association (and, if an owner,
> will  serve on the Board of Directors). I understand that if I
> to have a say in the decision-making process, it is my
> to participate in Association meetings.
> 2. Preparation of common meals. I understand that every adult
> resident (18 or older) shares equally in the preparation and/or
> clean-up of common meals on a rotating basis.  I intend to do
> share, regardless of how frequently I sign up to eat those
> 3. Maintenance and improvement of the community property.
> Market cohousing  self-manages and maintains its property.  In
> to keep our property in the best condition possible, I agree to
do my
> share of the ongoing maintenance of the common areas
> Signed:_________________________________  Unit #_________
> Date:_________________
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