Neighbors who are gone a lot
From: Bonnie Ferguson (
Date: Mon, 26 Sep 2016 12:05:26 -0700 (PDT)
     We have some neighbors who travel a lot but they all contribute to the 
Community when here so it doesn't feel burdensome.  Also sometimes absent 
neighbors allow residents' guests to use their homes/ parking places while they 
are gone so we get additional guest rooms out of the deal.  We consciously try 
to ensure that there is a lot of redundancy in who knows how to do what so we 
are not bereft of Community skills when folks are out of town.  And lastly we 
have a lockbox which contains keys to all our homes so any of us can get into 
an absent resident's place in case of need.  This is useful even for when folks 
are just at work, in case of plumbing disaster for instance which happened 
      I think the snowbird phenomena could work in cohousing with advanced 
thoughtful agreements about these issues.  It is very nice to feel secure when 
you are out of town about your neighbors looking out for your place, watering 
your plants, taking in your mail and feeding, and walking your pets.  And as 
long as it's an exchange of favors it works.
                Bonnie Fergusson
               Swans Market Cohousing
                Oakland, CA

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