Last month, at the end of KfarDC’s National Jewish Cohousing Day event, we offered participants a chance to write down questions and said we’d follow up with answers. Below are those questions (slightly edited for clarity) and our answers.
We hope to answer more questions on our January 12th, 2020, cohousing tour.
- How are we going to develop the conflict resolution and mediation skills needed to build a community.
As we start with the work of building community, we are luck to have the advice and guidance of cohousing professionals, such as Ann Zebaldo from Mid-Atlantic Cohousing and Roger Studley from Urban Moshav. As we progress, we plan on sending KfarDC members to moderation and mediation training to ensure the community has the skills internally to move us forward.
- With Millennials and Gen Z being so transitory, is there a space for them? Can there be a space for potentially temporary community members?
We make no assumptions about what generation owns vs. rents. There are 20-year-olds who own condos and 60 year olds who prefer to rent. That said, KfarDC does plan on making a space for those who choose to rent. It is our goal to have a mix of owner-occupied and rental units.
- Approximately what it will cost to live in KfarDC?
Costs in KfarDC will be market prices in the area. However, in addition to your condo, you’ll have access to communal resources, such as a communal kitchen or studio space you wouldn’t have elsewhere. Potential savings when living in cohousing also comes from shared resources, such as community-owned tools; traded services, such as babysitting and pet care; and from buying in bulk.
- What will be KfarDC’s formation process?
You’re in it! KfarDC is currently conducting outreach events to build a broader You’re in it! KfarDC is currently conducting outreach events to build a broader community. From this broader community, some members will come together to create the formation group. This group will work on establishing the parameters of the community while developing a strong connection. At the same time, we will be working with a developer to identify and secure a property.
- Is it more difficult for individuals to get financing for cohousing?
An apartment in cohousing is simply a condo or a co-op (depending on the legal structure the community adopts). Cohousing has no special status and thus its likely that lenders will treat a unit like any other unit in the neighborhood when making a lending determination.
- Is it more difficult to sell property located in a cohousing community?
While we do not have data in general on this, there is DC-specific information. The two DC cohousing communities each have a list of hundreds of individuals interested in purchasing a home in those communities. Recent units for sale were purchased days after being listed or even before being publicly listed.
- Must everyone buy to live in KfarDC? What about people who may not be able to afford to purchase a unit in KfarDC now or ever but very much want to be a part of KfarDC?
It is our goal to have a mix of owner-occupied and rental units to address multiple incomes.