Re: What is success?
From: Jenny Guy (
Date: Sat, 15 May 2021 16:03:35 -0700 (PDT)
Hi Carol, this is something I've wondered, too. Awhile back there was a
discussion on this forum, asking people about the level of connection they
felt in their cohousing communities. The answers ranged from like a close
family, to a condominium complex where you know your neighbors a little
better than in a typical condo.

What defines successful cohousing for me is that there are common meals
(maybe at least weekly? -- I haven't put a number on that), and the
community is still member managed, with all members welcome at meetings. So
for me, the bar is fairly low, and I think a 'minimal' cohousing community
would still offer a considerably better way of life than a typical
condominium complex, apartment building or disconnected house.

Those are measurable things (meals and management), and of course there are
many communities without those things that have a greater sense of
togetherness than some successful cohousing communities. I'm just saying
that, in my mind, those are the measurable things that mean it hasn't
devolved into just another condominium complex. And those are things that
can keep the sense of community going, if core people leave.

The fear that cohousing, once built, could devolve into any old condo
complex would mean: an elected board with no meetings of the general
membership, no common meals that the entire community is invited to, and
maybe a locked common house that you have to pay to use. As far as I know,
that's what people are talking about when they say no built cohousing has

Jenny Guy
Kingfisher Cohousing, Oakland Calif. where we'll have a 1 bedroom apartment
for rent in Sept or Oct!

On Tue, May 4, 2021 at 10:36 AM CJ Q <homeschoolvideo [at]> wrote:

> Hi all,
> In a recent post someone said that they have never seen a cohousing fail
> once it's built. That is wonderful.  I guess I've heard some wonder about
> failure once it's built. What would that mean? EVeryone leaves and
> forecloses and one person is left with a huge property? Or is it
> impossible? At worst it would sell as individual houses and as a condo,
> right?. And others have spoken of the secret sauce so sometimes you could
> get that in a condo that wants to be more connected.Some even say they make
> cohousing by moving into a condo and slowly have others move in and take
> over at least part of it. So, my question is - what is success? What is
> failure?
> And I'm on the team for more connections and success no matter where/what
> it looks like.

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