Re: Research on cohousing
From: Sharon Villines (
Date: Fri, 31 Jul 2009 14:45:19 -0700 (PDT)

On Jul 31, 2009, at 11:30 AM, smk2152 [at] wrote:

What about cohousing enables aging in place, how are
home health aides incorporated into this unique housing-style, what
are the challenges of establishing caring relationships with non-kin
and what are residents' perceptions of their quality of life before
and after moving into cohousing?

Thank you so much for saying you are doing your own research. Students usually as us to do it -- like sending a long list of questions, usually statistical, expecting us to answer them.

Another question I would ask is "How much is the community willing to control noise to accommodate declines in hearing." For Bill Clinton this decline started at 50 when he had a to get a hearing aid in order to hear questions in a crowd. The decline is in the ability to hear people talking when there is a lot of ambient noise -- as in kids running round yelling, both the yelling and stomping noise of running feet. And "background" music which makes listening very tiring.

A reminder as you ask these questions that a very, very small percentage of older people require nursing-home level of care as the result of aging. It is much more typical to have a short period of illness before death -- 2 weeks or months. In that range. Not years.

Of the people who need supportive services, the "aging" are not the only group. Anyone at any age with an injury or a chronic or degenerative disease requires "extra" care.

Most people see themselves as age 35, even when they are 85 so tread lightly on the "aged". Someone is likely to say they don't know any aged people. (No I don't have a reference for the research on this. I saw a study on it when I was about 35.)

with a high percentage of older people or an elder-cohouse.

If you go to an elder cohousing community, I recommend that you also to an intergenerational community. Most are intergenerational.

Sharon Villines
Takoma Village Cohousing, Washington DC

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