About the Money

Windsong Cohousing, Langley, BC

Windsong Cohousing, Langley, BC by McCamant & Durrett Architects

LiveWell Cohousing projects are run on a not-for-profit basis.  LiveWell earns fees for managing projects but does not add other costs or profit to the cost of a project.  All projects are managed on an open-book basis so cohousing members can track how money is being spent.

Building a cohousing community takes time, resources and the commitment of a large number of people (group members, supporters, and key advisers).  And these days anything involving real estate is expensive.

Preliminary floor plan of Smithers cohousing project - common house.

Preliminary floor plan of Smithers cohousing project – common house.

With so much money at stake, it is essential groups have business-like operations and meetings, plus strong group decision-making processes.  There will be bumps along the road, and the group must be able to work together to overcome such challenges.  Happily, it is often these challenges that unite the group and bring people closer together.  Sharing the journey and overcoming obstacles are important aspects of the community-building process.  See our Resources page for more tools on group building and decision-making assistance.

Silver Lining

From a financial perspective, evidence from the USA confirms cohousing projects have performed very well and maintained or increased in value after completion.  “A report completed in January 2010 by the appraisal firm of Bartholomew Associates concluded that resales in cohousing communities in Northern California sold at 1.7 to 3.12 times the prices of other townhouses and condominiums in the area. When prices were adjusted for specific differences in age, condition and location, cohousing homes sold at 11 to 63 percent premiums compared to the closest comparables. This data was collected through 2009 and thus includes the years of the great recession.”  Creating Cohousing: Building Sustainable Communities (New Society Press, 2011).