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House Sharing & Co-Housing
Hallo, I am looking for some child friendly community
housing in Berkeley. Does anyone know of any available?
Oh, how I welcome this post! I am a single mom with no
extended family support and have made it through child
rearing 0-8 years old in that realm. This American culture,
with its priorities on individual success has led most of us
parents into a real lack of support for ourselves and lack
of enduring role models (adults) and playfriends (neighbors)
for our children. I am finally seeing clearly and now have
gathered 3 other families and we are looking for property to
buy where we can all coexist in a supportive and enduring
way. I have researched the current community living
communities, which seem great but are nearly impossible to
get into, and have finally decided to sell my single family
home and buy something more conducive to community housing.
Best of luck!! Kim
It seems to me like an ideal scenario to buy a duplex/triplex
with a couple of families with the idea of creating a
mini-community. When I say mini-community, I'm not talking
commune. I'm thinking more along the lines of a fun shared yard,
a communal dinner here and there and some baby-sitting swapping.
I'm wondering how things work for those of you already in a
co-housing situation. What do you like about it? What isn't so
good about it? Ideally I'd like to get into something like this
with friends I know but they're all settled in their own homes
already. How do I find other like-minded people out there?
I'm no hippy- I just like people!
You're on the right path. I live in a cohousing group with 6
households in north Oakland, and know other folks in the area who
are in situations in duplex or tri-plex setups. We share
washer/dryer, eat together a couple of times a week and share
dog/babysitting duties from time to time. We also all keep an
ear to the ground about neighborhood activities and keep each
other up to date on that. As for finding the people to join you
- you could try Craigslist, or also ask about that on
cohousing.org website. A couple of folks to look for in the
local community are Raines Cohen or Karen Hester - both very
active in the local cohousing communities and know a lot of
folks, they may be able to connect you.
http://www.hesternet.net/ is Karen's website.
http://www.raines.com/ is Raines website. Best of luck!
I am also interested in co housing and have been looking into either
something or joining one. I love the idea of sharing meals, gardening,
and childcare duties because it makes these chores more fun while also
more time to do other things that you enjoy. I also like to have my
and alone time, so co housing seems to be a nice way to get the best of
community world and solitude. I visited a co housing community a few
We, and anyone else interested in co housing should talk.
Craving community in this work filled life.
Sounds like you're not yet plugged into the cohousing networks
that already exist. There are people just like you who are
ready to buy with relative strangers and then form a community.
There is lots of information about this once you start looking.
Get yourself on to the list that Karen Hester runs:
http://www.hesternet.net/cohousing.html She sends out emails
about properties that are good for cohousing or groups that are
forming. Also Cohousing Network has a list serve that can be
about networking, too.
As for problems and realities of living in cohousing -- you can
also begin to get a taste for that from these two resources
above. You might try to make some personal connections in order
to do some informational interviewing.
I was able to skip all that and
Got lucky and bought a cohousing apartment.
Do you have neighbors where you live now who would like to swap
babysitting and share communal meals?
Buying a triplex and moving sounds like an upheaval that might
not work out in the end.
I would love to talk to you-- I too have looked into co-housing,
as we would love to have another or other families that we
joined occasionally, lived in proximity and watched each other's
kids. We also have interested friends, who aren't really up for
moving anytime soon. We presently live in a TIC (tenancy in
common) in Berkeley- so I know quite a bit about the ways this
If you'd like to talk, write me!
Our family would really like to live in an EcoVillage or some sort of
co-housing in or near Berkeley, Albany, or Alameda. Maybe
Orinda/Lafayette. We don't need it to be particularly cheap; less than
$800,000 is ideal but not required. We need it to be in an area that
is safe, has a good school district, and has other young kids around.
Extra bonuses would be close to public transit, an easy commute to U.C.
Berkeley, and in a bike-friendly area.
Five years ago, we interviewed a nanny at someone's house in, I think,
Rockridge where several neighbors had taken down their backyard fences
to make one big yard. They also held monthly potlucks. That sort of
thing would work for us too.
Know of anywhere that fits the bill? Have a house for sale next to you
and might want to take down backyard fences?
Looking for a Home
I am in the early stages of assembling a co-housing group. I too would like to
build in the Lamorinda area or possibly near Berkeley. Land is always a challenge,
but with a core group of committed folks, it is possible to move ahead. My goals
match yours in terms of cost, geography, and co-housing model. In addition I would
like a shared focus on Mindful Living: eco-friendly, support for healthy lifestyle,
community involvement and a culture of kindness. If interested, please call or
I live in cohousing in Berkeley. Our adjacent neighbor is selling his house right
now. Send me a note and I can put you guys in touch.
I am a single mother, work full time and I am going back to
school this month. I currently live in Oakland but would like
to move back to San Francisco. I have a 5 yr old. I am
wondering if anyone knows of a reliable housing source for
seeking roomates. Preferably other single parents. I would like
to find housing to share, but of course finding roommates that
are child friendly is a challenge.
Any thoughts or advice?
Try Co-Abode: http://coabode.com - it is designed for single moms.
Since you are a BPN subscriber, you can post to the
Marketplace Newsletter in
the section "Housing".
I often see similar posts in that section.
I'm a 33-year-old single mother with a one-year-old son. I'd
like to share a household with another single parent(s), but
I've been having a hard time finding other single parents with
the same goal.
My ideal household would be community-oriented. We'd share our
lives in a meaningful way--for example, through some shared
meals or outings with the children. I'd also be open to sharing
childcare on occasion. I'm a vegetarian, ! though am not adverse
to meat in the house, and would definitely like to limit
My ideal parent housemate would be financially stable, easy-
going, patient, and fun-loving, while also being a positive role
model for the children.
I'm looking for advice on how to connect with other single
parents looking for a shared household in the North Oakland,
Berkeley, Montclair, Rockridge, or Lake Merritt areas.
Have you tried co-abode.com? The service is headquartered in San
Francisco and was founded by a single mother for other single mothers
seeking cooperative living situations. On their website you can post
your profile describing your lifestyle, parenting philosophy, housing
preferences, etc. Though I haven't paid the registration fee ($30)
required to read and send emails to prospective housing partners, it
seems to be the most promising resource that I've seen so far. Good
this page was last updated: Jul 11, 2012
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