Re: Finding and Vetting a Developer
From: Lorraine Faris (
Date: Sun, 30 May 2021 18:51:55 -0700 (PDT)
Thanks so much, very helpful

On Sun, May 30, 2021, 7:45 PM Barbara Smith via Cohousing-L <
cohousing-l [at]> wrote:

> (The original post was on May 25)I'm a member of Hager Homestead, a
> developing, over-55 cohousing community in Littleton, MA, that has been
> working with a local developer, Matt Blackham, since June of 2018. Before
> that, the founders, Victoria Thatcher and Mayhew Seavey, had failed to
> reach agreement with a developer (who wanted to be paid upfront for his
> work).  At this point, for professional guidance, they contacted Katie
> McCamant, president of CoHousing Solutions, who helped bring the idea of
> cohousing to the United States.
> With McCamant’s assistance, the two founders began contacting architects
> they knew personally for advice and recommendations for a developer. One
> architect recommended three developers, among them Matt Blackham. Victoria
> and Mayhew interviewed all the developers, liked Matt, and Katie McCamant
> helped by interviewing him.
> Most important, McCamant gave Mayhew and Victoria her own criteria for
> selecting a developer:
> *The developer understands the importance of partnering -- his interests
> and your interests are aligned
> *He’s “bank-able” – the bank will loan him the money because he has the
> money
> *He has skill, experience and resources to be the project leader during
> construction
> *He has solid experience in developing multi-family housing
> *He’s willing to meet weekly to ensure good communications
> *Has good character qualities.  In Matt’s case, he is well-educated,
> articulate, communicates easily, is relaxed, patient, has a good sense of
> humor, is hard working, diligent, and reliable.
> Victoria has often said that this advice enabled this group to select a
> wonderful developer. Without his help Hager Homestead might still be
> looking for land, instead of being poised to purchase it, and – we hope –
> to break ground late this year.
> ThanksBarbara B Smith
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