Bellingham Cohousing

Bellingham, Washington, United States

  • Last updated: January 17, 2019 (2 seconds ago)
  • Listing created on: December 31, 1999

Mission Statement

We trust, respect and accept one another.
We bring joy to our work and play.
We resolve conflict responsibly.
We live interdependently and acknowledge our individuality.
We contribute to our community.
We care for each other.
We live lightly on the earth.

Community Description

The mission of Bellingham Cohousing is to work together to create a diverse multigenerational neighborhood of 33 homes on the historic Donovan Farm site. We intend to be supportive of one another, share resources, and strive to be stewards of the land. We aspire to collaborate with the larger Bellingham community to build housing for mixed-income households.
Bellingham Cohousing is a living situation that requires considerable neighbor participation. Bellingham Cohousing residents dedicate as much as 20 hours per month attending committee meetings, planning meals and community activities, and working on community projects.

Although Bellingham Cohousing is a supportive community, it is not designed or intended to be an environment for individuals needing therapeutic levels of attention or care.

Bellingham Cohousing offers many opportunities for neighbors to develop and foster a sense of community through:

Optional common meals several times a week
Working together on projects around the site and in groups and committees
Managing our community together through consensus-based decision-making
Community-wide celebrations of major life events: Already we have had 2 weddings and fantastic birthday celebrations
And…casual discussions, book groups, salon-style discussions, a regular mid-morning coffee klatch, barbecues and potlucks, performances and talent shows, impromptu dinner concerts, and other shared activities ranging from shopping expeditions to sea kayaking and backcountry skiing

  • Status: Established (At least 4+ adults, 2+ years)
  • Started Planning: 1995
  • Start Living Together: 2000
  • Visitors accepted: Yes
  • Open to new Members: Yes
  • Please read the details in Membership below before contacting this community. Send Message
  • Website address:
  • Contact Name: Bellingham Cohousing
  • Phone: 360-935-2614
  • Community Address:
    2614 Donovan Ave
    Bellingham, Washington, 98225
    United States
  • Location


  • Type(s): Cohousing (individual homes within group owned property)
  • Programs & Activities: Neighborhood, Community Housing, or Homeowner’s Association
  • Location: Suburban


  • Status: We have land we have developed on
  • Area: 5.8 acres
  • Current Residence Types: Multi-family homes
  • Current Number of Residences: 33
  • Planned number of residences: 33
  • Planned Residence Types: Multi-family homes
  • Housing Provided: Purchase, Rental
  • Land owned by: Individual community member(s)
  • Additional Comments:

    Bellingham Cohousing is a condominium

    from 2 bedroom flats to 4 bedroom duplexes



  • Adult Members: 64
  • Child Members: 10
  • Non-member Residents: 0
  • Percent Women: 51-60%
  • Percent Men: 41-49%
  • Percent Transgender: 0%
  • Visitors accepted: Yes
  • Visitor Process:

    We invite you to visit during our daily coffee hour, held every day at 10 a.m. in our Common House. Members and friends gather for coffee, tea, conversation and community. It is a great chance to meet us, and get a glimpse of cohousing in action.

  • Open to new Members: Yes
  • Membership Process:

    See for unit availability

  • Additional Comments:

    Spiritual traditions are member-based

    based on individual choices


  • Decision Making: Modified Consensus (everyone agrees, with some exceptions or fallbacks.)
  • Identified Leader: No
  • Leadership Core Group: Yes
  • Additional Comments:

    We are set up as a legal condominium with a homeowners association.

    Our Board of Directors serves more as representative core group.


  • Dues, Fees, or Shared Expenses: Yes
  • Shared Income: None
  • Required Labor Contribution per Week: 0
  • Open to members with existing debt: Yes
  • Additional Comments:

    not applicable

    9 hours per month per adult member is expected.

    Members own their own condominium units

    monthly dues based on size of unit

Sustainability Practices

  • Energy Infrastructure: We are connected to the grid.
  • Current renewable energy generation: Up to 25%
  • Energy sources: Solar, Clean Energy from the Grid
  • Planned renewable energy generation: Up to 25%
  • Current food produced: Up to 25%
  • Planned food produced: Up to 25%
  • Food produced locally: Up to 25%


  • Common Facilities: Common House, Garden(s), Vehicle Share, Library, Workshop, Hot tub or hot springs, Large Scale Kitchen, Fire pit, Swingsets & play areas, Gym or sports area, Internet
  • Internet Available: Yes, community provides it
  • Internet Fast?: Yes, exceptionally.
  • Cell Phone Service: Good for most people.
  • Shared meals: 2-5 times per week
  • Dietary Practice: Omnivorous (plants and animals), Organic (no pesticides or synthetic fertilizers), Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free
  • Dietary Choice or Restrictions: No – people may eat however they wish.
  • Special Diets OK: Sometimes
  • Alcohol Use: Yes, used occasionally.
  • Tobacco Use: Yes, used seldomly, or ceremoniously.
  • Additional Diet Comments:

    whenever a cooking team volunteers to cook a meal

    we have a small volunteer community garden

    Common meal have vegetarian options, some organic meals are prepared

    based on individual behavior, not regulated

    based on individual behavior, not regulated

  • Common Spiritual Practice(s): Christian, Buddhist, Jewish, Wiccan, Catholic, Quaker, Unitarian Universalist, Paganism or Earth Religions
  • Spiritual Practice Expected?: No
  • Education Style(s): Home Schooling, Private School off the property, Public Schooling, Up to each family or individual
  • Healthcare Options: Up to each family or individual

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Community Network or Organization Affiliations

The Fellowship for Intentional Community (FIC), Coho/US