Some businesses and individuals call themselves cohousing developers. To some degree, every existing cohousing community has been “developed” and they can be thought of having used “developers” (see wikipedia:Real-estate_developer for some related background). In fact, many cohousing communities have been self-developed, with various members and committees of the forming group assuming responsibility for real estate development activities… in addition to forming the human community. Self-developed groups sometimes hire development consultants, who sell their services, but do not assume any risk.
Some cohousing developers partner with forming communities and assume a portion of the risk associated with the real estate development project in return for a portion of the profit. Developers typically use their track record, connections, and assets to help secure the financing for construction and provide many other Cohousing development services. Many companies who self-identify as “cohousing developers,” however, operate purely as consultants – working on a fee-for-service basis, rather than assuming financial risks.
Unfortunately, the distinction between a “developer” and “development consultant” is unclear and many forming groups believe they have “development partners,” as they begin paying significant fees to consultants who, themselves, assume zero financial risk. In common language, the word “partner” is often mis-used when describing business relationships. See the wikipedia:partnership article to better understand the meaning of this commonly mis-understood idea. Basically, you are not partners unless you both make investments (of time and/or money) and are both are potential recipients of any resulting profits (…or share responsibility for losses).
An interesting “development” in cohousing development is Developer-led cohousing, where the developer makes higher levels of initial investment – assumes more (or all) of the earliest risk. Some in the movement feel this is the beginning of a trend that will rapidly spread cohousing. Others fear the active leadership from commercially-motivated developers may dilute the power of community which many self-developed cohousing communities feel they have attained through their survival of the intense period of development.
List of Cohousing Developers
The list below is intended to grow into a list of Cohousing developers which may be available to forming or existing Cohousing communities. Feel free to add yourself or business below alphabetically (by last name if person). You are also invited to edit your listing here into a directory description, as is found in the Cohousing Consultants articles.
The Cohousing Communities Directory lists developers for individual projects, when supplied by the community.
- Cohousing Collaborative: cohousingcollaborative.com
- CoHousing Solutions cohousing-solutions.com
- McCamant & Durrett Architects mccamant-durrett.com
- Cohousing Development Company cohousingdevelopment.com
- Cohousing Resources, LLC: cohousingresources.com
- Eco Housing Corp www.ecohousing.net
- Wonderland Hill Development Company: whdc.com
- LiveWell Cohousing Developments Ltd. (based in British Columbia, Canada) www.livewellcohousing.ca
Other Lists of Cohousing Developers