Lotus Lodge

Candler, North Carolina, United States

  • Last updated: February 28, 2018 (2 seconds ago)
  • Listing created on: September 15, 2006

Mission Statement

Co-creating a space of mutual respect, awakening, grace and joy.

Community Description

Lotus Lodge is a unique shared-house community located just 12 minutes from the heart of downtown Asheville, NC. We have 9 adult men and women (about half each), currently ages 20s-70s, in a quiet, 2-story four-plex (converted old 4400 sq. ft. farm house into 4 full apartments that people typically, share plus now a new, 1-room, private studio apartment, all under one roof. Rooms for long or short-term residency open up intermittently, so contact us if interested. Studio apartment ($800/mo plus electric) and rooms (about $500/month plus electric) are furnished, sunny and attractive. Includes WiFi and TV access. Electricity per person is about $44/month on average). Studio is perfect for business travelers or people relocating who need a home space for a few weeks or months. Email (preferred) or call for availability.

The large group room downstairs welcomes everyone and is where we have intermittent movie / TV nights, house concerts, potlucks and sometimes workshop space. Outdoor shared areas include a big front porch, back patio, fire pit, clotheslines (which some use year ’round) organic gardens and rain barrels to water them (into permaculture). Across the street is a wooded walking path alongside Hominy Creek. We are in a semi-rural area (Candler) yet close to all the amenities of downtown Asheville, NC.

Part of what is unique about Lotus Lodge is that the 9 of us are quite autonomous. Some work full or part time away from home, and/or go into town with some frequency so there’s a surprising amount of quiet and privacy, even in the shared apartments. We almost never do meetings and each person has their own food (all types of food are ok, though we all tend toward organic, non-gmo and healthy), own cupboard and refrigerator space, and each determines when to connect with others for mealtime or whatever. This translates to people enjoying each other’s company frequently and often eating together mostly on an impromptu, inspired basis with each eating their own food. It flows.

It’s really the best of both worlds – of having your own space & life, as well as having a sense of family & community with 8 other friendly, caring, intelligent, interesting and health-conscious people. Some folks do meditation & Qi Kong or Tai Chi regularly, some lean toward vegetarian foods, most also eat some meat, eggs & dairy – and all are free to do their thing. Residents tend to be well educated, progressive, creative, upbeat and great to be around. We enjoy meaningful conversations, laughter, privacy and mutual respect, and we maintain a tidy space.

If interested in possibly living or staying here, please email me at: [email protected] with a paragraph about you that includes your ideal timeframe for being here, and a REQUEST for our questionnaire which we’ll send to you right away. Once we get your filled-out questionnaire returned, we’ll get back to you within a day or so and – if all seems like a go, we can proceed with a call and then a face-to-face meeting(s) here at the Lodge for you and at least some of us to see if we’re a good fit. To stay short-term, just email us of your interest or call, 828-581-9036.

If you do join us as a long-term resident, you’ll likely enjoy many good times and little drama – and hopefully will stay a good while. No smokers or pets please. Best regards to your collaborative living! Namaste, Gaya Erlandson, PhD (founder, owner & resident committed to healthy, happy living).

Note: If you are relocating to the area, we can refer you to a really good local real estate broker to be your buyer’s agent.

  • Status: Established (At least 4+ adults, 2+ years)
  • Started Planning: 2000
  • Start Living Together: 2004
  • Visitors accepted: Yes, rarely
  • Open to new Members: Yes
  • Please read the details in Membership below before contacting this community. Send Message
  • Website address: http://www.lotuslodge.com
  • Business, Project, or Organization: http://LotusLodge.com
  • Contact Name: Gaya (aka Gayatri) Erlandson
  • Phone: 828-581-9036
  • Community Address:
    11 Old Candler Town Rd.
    Candler, North Carolina, 28715
    United States
  • FIC Membership

    Since 2014
    This Community is an FIC Member
  • Location


  • Type(s): Shared Housing, Cohouseholding, or Coliving (multiple individuals sharing a dwelling)
  • Programs & Activities: Transition Town (post-petroleum and off-grid communities), Neighborhood, Community Housing, or Homeowner’s Association, Organization, Resource, or Network, Festivals, Conferences, Events, relevant workshops on community living
  • Location: Rural


  • Status: We have land we have developed on
  • Area: 1 acres
  • Current Residence Types: Multi-family homes, Room(s) in a house or building, A private studio apartment, with it’s own exterior door, bathroom, kitchenette, etc.
  • Current Number of Residences: 8
  • Planned number of residences: 8
  • Planned Residence Types: Room(s) in a house or building
  • Housing Provided: Rental
  • Land owned by: Individual community member(s)
  • Additional Comments:

    Our housing is within one building that is a four-plex with 9 bedrooms across 4400 square ft and each bedroom rented separately – so each person shares their kitchen, bath and dining area with just 1-3 others. We are interested in being involved in the greater community – helping to catalyze our neighborhood of mostly strangers into a caring, collaborative eco-village local community. And it’s working!


  • Adult Members: 8
  • Child Members: 0
  • Non-member Residents: 0
  • Percent Women: 50%
  • Percent Men: 50%
  • Percent Transgender: 0%
  • Visitors accepted: Yes, rarely
  • Visitor Process:

    One great way is to come to one of our Community Network Gathering Meetup events. We host a potluck-presentation-discussion on the 3rd or 4th Sunday of every month, at 6pm, and occasionally offer other events via that Meetup. If you join (can un-join any time), you’ll be sent all the announcements / invitations, and can rsvp to those events of interest. Another way is to rent a room for a week ($330) if available. Send an email to us with info describing you, your interest, your time frame as to when you’d like to visit for how long, etc. Please INCLUDE YOUR PHONE NUMBER and put “Lotus Lodge” in the subject line. Thank you!!!

  • Open to new Members: Yes
  • Membership Process:

    People generally first email us with a paragraph or two telling about themselves, their timeframe for moving in and how long they’d like to stay. They also ask for our questionnaire. After receiving the filled-out questionnaire, we call them back and visit on the phone. If the call goes well, we then set up a time for them to come to visit us at Lotus Lodge – to see it, meet us and be interviewed to see if are a good fit. If it’s a “yes” by all parties, we then go through whatever agreements, questions & answers as needed, and welcome them in! Generally, they pay a $150 refundable deposit plus the first month’s rent upfront.

  • Additional Comments:

    Eclectic – generally into new thought philosophy. Everyone explores their own truth.


  • Decision Making: The big decisions are made by the owner (me) who I’d describe as a benevolent dictator. Everyone, however, is encouraged to participate and be involved.
  • Identified Leader: No
  • Leadership Core Group: Yes
  • Additional Comments:

    The place is owned by one member, however, so certain decisions are mostly or entirely up to her. She would love to convert to Cooperative ownership at some point! If/when that happens, we likely will go back to implementing sociocracy.


  • Dues, Fees, or Shared Expenses: No
  • Shared Income: None
  • Required Labor Contribution: Encouraged or suggested
  • Open to members with existing debt: Yes
  • Additional Comments:

    Everyone must pay own way fully.

    To contribute to the cleaning and maintenance of shared areas, 1 hour a week is suggested.

Sustainability Practices

  • Energy Infrastructure: We are connected to the grid.
  • Current renewable energy generation: Up to 25%
  • Energy sources: Clean Energy from the Grid, We manage the indoor temp. in the summer largely by using windows – open at night, with box fans and closed by day. Rarely use the air conditioning.
  • Planned renewable energy generation: Almost All, around 90%
  • Current food produced: Up to 25%
  • Planned food produced: From 50-75%
  • Food produced locally: Between 26-49%


  • Common Facilities: Common House, Garden(s), Vehicle Share, Library, Workshop, Outbuilding(s), Fire pit, Internet
  • Internet Available: Yes, community provides it
  • Internet Fast?: Yes, exceptionally.
  • Cell Phone Service: Good for most people.
  • Shared meals: 1-3 times per month
  • Dietary Practice: Omnivorous (plants and animals), Paleo (no grains, dairy, processed foods, or legumes), Local (food sourced within 150 miles), Organic (no pesticides or synthetic fertilizers), GMO Free (only non-genetically modified organisms), Gluten-Free
  • Dietary Choice or Restrictions: No – people may eat however they wish.
  • Special Diets OK: Yes
  • Alcohol Use: Yes, used occasionally.
  • Tobacco Use: No, this community does not permit tobacco use.
  • Additional Diet Comments:

    Each person chooses own diet and has own food, own designated cupboard and refrigerator space.

  • Common Spiritual Practice(s): Ecumenical (accepts all religions or spiritual practices), Eclectic (integrates multiple religious or spiritual beliefs), Not a particularly spiritual or religious community, Humanist
  • Spiritual Practice Expected?: No
  • Healthcare Options: Up to each family or individual

Additional Comments

Semi-rural yet 12 min to downtown Asheville, NC. This is a rental community so people stay for varying lengths of time – some years, others a few months. We are spiritually oriented and yet everyone is free to choose own beliefs/practices and eating preferences. We tend to attract writers (several books have been completed here – two more in the works), coaches and counselors. Highly valued is mutual respect (good boundaries, everyone readily sharing in maintaining peace and tidiness), and good skills at negotiating for what you want while staying relational, respectful and kind (versus blaming others for not meeting poorly articulated wants and needs). We value developing our intuition and ability to “hear,” trust and follow inner guidance. Having a good sense of humor, a flexible & upbeat attitude, interest in organic gardening, permaculture, perelandra & doing home DIY projects are real pluses. Folks here generally are high functioning – grounded, thoughtful, authentic, interesting and filled with wonder, a sense of humor and gratitude.

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Community Network or Organization Affiliations

The Fellowship for Intentional Community (FIC), Community Network Gathering Meetup

Community Affiliations

Findhorn, Westwood Cohousing,


Asheville, shared housing, house sharing, collaborative housing, co-housing, short-term rental