Policy Database

Policy FolderPolicies on the cohousing.org website come from two major places: The collection of Useful Documents done by Laura Fitch and others in December of 2011, and the Cohousing / Intentional Community policy database which was created and is maintained by Daniel Lindenberger. To submit a policy for inclusion on this site, contact our webmaster.

Proposal Name:                  Dispute Resolution Guidelines Proposal  (Elaborating on Strata Bylaw #27, subsections 1-3)   Proposal Number:              35 B Distribution Date:               November 5, 2008 Group:                                   Community Team or subgroup:           Contact Names:                  Annie, Mary Phone:                                   250-898-8308; 250-331-0151 Email:                                     Decision Type (circle):      short term      long term                                                 low impact     moderate impact      ...
Section 1: Donated Items - Items donated to the community belong to the community free and clear. Related teams will decide if a donated item will be accepted. Section 2: Loaned Items –Columbia Ecovillage individuals or families may loan items to the community. Related teams will decide if an item will be accepted. The community is not responsible for any loss or damage for the loaned items. Section 3: Waiver - All community members will sign a waiver releasing the community from any liability for loss or damage to loaned items. I waive any claim for damages against Columbia...
No vehicles may be driven in the pedestrian areas or emergency access areas except for emergency vehicles and emergency medical access except as follows: Upon reasonable notice posted conspicuously in common areas, the pedestrian ways may be used by delivery vehicles and for other extraordinary uses. The unit owner requiring such use shall be responsible for any damage to lawns or other landscaping occasioned by such use of pedestrian areas. (By-laws) Vehicles on loop should not exceed walking speed and should use chocks when parked.
 Division 1 -- Duties of Owners, Tenants, Occupants and Visitors 1          Payment of strata fees (1)  An owner must pay strata fees on or before the first day of the month to which the strata fees relate. Interest will accrue on late payment of strata fees at the rate of 10 percent per annum compounded annually. 2          Repair and maintenance of property by owner (1)  An owner must repair and maintain the owner's strata lot, except for repair and maintenance that is the responsibility of the strata corporation under these bylaws. (2)  An...
Email Communication, Suggested Guidelines Email is a powerful tool for communication. These guidelines will help email senders and receivers be aware of the benefits and pitfalls of using email rather than talking by phone or meeting in person. Benefits of Email Email is best suited for informational uses where the content is practical and specific, and is free of emotional content. Pitfalls of Email • Careless use of email can create negative feelings and mistaken understanding or interpretation of the sender's intent. • Think back to instances where you have...
Exterior Modifications - WindSong 2002 Exterior Modifications Policy The exterior of our building is owned by the Strata [cooperative or homeowners association]. • This means that the Strata is normally responsible for the care and maintenance of siding, exterior windows, decks, roofs and the exterior walls. Individual homeowners are responsible for maintenance of the interior of their walls. • The Strata has in the past given permission for individual homeowners to modify exterior features, but this has been only under the condition that the owner takes over the responsibility for any...
WindSong Facilitation Team and Team Processes Windsong is a legal strata and is thus subject to the Strata Property Act. We do not elect a strata council as described in the Act. Our by-laws allow us to include every Windsong resident in our decision making process. All decisions in Windsong are made by consensus at community meetings unless an individual or a group has been delegated particular decision making authority by the Community Meeting. Community meetings are held on the first Friday of every month, starting at 7:30 pm. The Facilitation Team meets about two weeks ahead of...
Homeowner Insurance Requirements 1) Each unit is required to carry a minimum of $300,000 in liability insurance.  2) Each unit is required to carry dwelling replacement insurance of a minimum of $65 per square foot. (Dwelling replacement covers the walls, floors, and ceilings from the center of the studs or joists in, cabinets, attached light fixtures, fans, kitchen appliances, bathroom fixtures, and other such items. It does not cover personal property such as clothing and furniture.)  3) It is recommended that owners consider carrying a higher amount...
  FINANCES - CAPITAL FUND The Capital Fund is established as a permanent fund for major expenses beyond the scope of the annual budget (such as the West Deck, etc.) Funds for the Capital Fund are allocated in the annual operating budget or by special assessment. (10/15/95) Unspent dollars from a completed project will stay in the Capital Fund as “unassigned.” All Capital Fund project budgets not spent in a given year will be zeroed out at year end unless the committee responsible for the expense...
FINANCES-GENERAL OWNERSHIP INTERESTS. The determination of the percentage ownership interest of the respective units in the common areas and facilities have been made upon the basis of the approximate relation that the fair value of each unit on the date hereof bears to the aggregate fair value of all the units in the condominium on the date hereof. (Master Deed) We agree to fairly reapportion condo fees.( 2/5/01) We agree to the concept of a mixture of value of house and per household for determining condo fees. (12/9/01...
  FINANCES - LATE CONDO FEES (orig 2/11/95; last revision by Finance Committee 2/17/01) Condo fees are due on the first of the month The grace period ends on the 15th of the month. The finance charge on late condo fees is 14.5%, with a minimum charge of $5. The finance charges can be avoided by arranging a payment plan with the bookkeeper before the end of the grace period. If there is no payment plan, the 14.5% finance charge is charged from the due date. [Generally don’t charge the %, just the $5. Don’t charge late fee for...
Initiation: Any member of the community can propose to the community formation of a new team. Person(s) with the idea writes a general description of the new team including a name and the proposed scope of work of the team. Description and request for a new team are sent via email to the community and the agenda planners (Coordination Team) prior to the general business meeting. At meeting community agrees/disagrees with the need for a new team. If authorized, the team is recognized as a Start up Team. Start up Team: A Start Up Team has authorization from the group to recruit members, hold...
1 The highest decision-making power in our community is the General Meting. The Meeting also serves as a core community development activity, gathering members together to build and maintain the collective life of the community. The responsibilities of the General Meeting are to a) govern the shared life and property of the community through setting policies and agreements, b) approve decisions regarding the annual operating budget, capital expense appropriations, and community/condo fees, c) see that the work of the community gets done, and d) address issues and conflicts that arise as the...
1 Occupancy in and use of the Condominium and its common areas is limited to owners, their guests, and such renters as are permitted 2 These Agreements and bylaws shall apply to all owners, renters, and guests residing within or using the common areas or facilities of the Condominium. 3 Unit owners and their guest and tenants shall comply with all laws of the United States, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, and ordinances of the Town of Amherst. 4 These bylaws may be amended by the Cherry Hill Condominium Association in accordance with its Bylaws, and these agreements may be changed by...
BACKGROUND: The 1/7/01 General Meeting approved the expenditure of $2000 from the capital fund to purchase a golf cart. The General Meeting also stated that the community would need to agree on a golf cart use policy at a general meeting before the purchase could be made. Henry agreed to lead the effort of developing a use policy and he convened a meeting on 1/28 with Henry, Flo, Nancy DeProsse, Jerry, Pam and Robin. The following is the golf cart use policy we developed and are proposing for consideration at the next available general meeting. CONCERNS: Needs: There are several types...
1. Deposit is $60. 

It can be in the form of an undated cheque written out to WindSong CoHousing and kept at our house.
The cost of replacing the lock if a key is lost is approximately $60.

 2. The key must be returned within two days of the guests leaving. If the key is to be placed into mailbox #7, it MUST be in an envelope with the host’s name on it. The key could be hung outside the door of #7 (at the top of the stairs) if we are not home. The deposit will be returned when the key is (unless you would like to leave a re-useable cheque here).
...
We are having a moratorium on External guests. The ones that we have no connection with until further work has been done on what it means and what it looks like and when we are ready. 6-14-09 GUESTS: Guests are Invited family, friends and supporters of the Ecovillage. RESERVATIONS: A calendar will be posted with reservations. Members may sign up for reservations by submitting requests in writing (by email) to the person appointed by Common Interiors Team to handle reservations. As a general rule, everyone is entitled to approx 10 days a year (365 days divided by 37 units = 9.86)...
When confronted with conflict of any kind, the community agrees to adhere to these conflict resolution principles and steps:   I Problem-Solving Guidelines. The village agrees to the following guidelines when involved in conflict resolution efforts: 1. A commitment to mutual respect. 2. A commitment to solve the problem. 3. No put-downs. 4. No intimidation, implied or direct. 5. No physical contact. 6. No interrupting. 7. Agreement to use the conflict resolution protocol, below.   II. Conflict Resolution Protocols: Community members in conflict will:   1...
1 Context: The Ad Hoc Facilitators “think tank” (Dyan, Steve, Mike and Jerry) on additions agreed that we may have gone as far it is useful to go in the discussions of what has been called principles, values, and/or guidelines related to additions. In some Quaker meetings, when agreement is not reached on a particular issue they write a “process minute.” The process minute essentially records the “state of the art” of the discussion. We feel we have reached that point with additions – that whatever limited good may come from more discussion does not...
1 DEFINITION OF UNIT (Master Deed) 1 The boundaries of units consist of the outside face of the exterior framing members, and, as to basement areas, the interior face of concrete walls. The units shall also include all windows and any porches or decks attached thereto, even if outside the boundaries described in Master Deed. (Master Deed) 2 Any office building unit shall be owned and used for business purposes by an owner or owners of a residential unit in the condominium. (Master Deed) 2 UNIT SITES (By-laws) 1 All areas surrounding the units shall be kept well-cared for and free from...
1 No unit owner shall sell their unit or otherwise transfer ownership without first offering same to the association for purchase at its transfer value, as detailed in the restrictive covenants in each individual deed. (Master Deed) 2 INTERNAL TRANSFERS 1 If anyone moves out of the community and their house becomes available for sale, then that house will be offered first to any member of the community (1/20/96, amended 3/8/98) 2 Individuals who are part of a family unit, and who reside within the community for a minimum of two consecutive years, are considered a member for purposes of...
1. Illegal Activities Policy: 1. No illegal activity is allowed on Windsong property, including: · Fires that do not conform to the fire regulations · Underage drinking · Possession or use of illegal drugs in common spaces · Noise outside of that permitted by applicable noise bylaws · Damage to common or private property This is stated in Windsong’s Bylaws, and is consistent with federal, provincial, municipal and strata law. 2. To address ongoing safety concerns, it is proposed that two designated tobacco smoking areas are...
Only unscented laundry products will be used at Columbia Ecovillage. This includes laundry sheets, detergents, and fabric softeners In order to allow community members to use up previously purchase products, scented laundry products will be allowed in the washing machine in the farm house until June 1st, 2009. No scented dryer sheets will be allowed anywhere. After June 1st, only unscented products will be allowed in any washer or dryer on the property. 4-5-09
1 The Finance Committee is responsible for legal matters concerning the community. (By budget approval) 2 Robin Luberoff is retained as the community’s lawyer without compensation. (2/28/98)
Maintaining accountability                            August 8, 2008:   Prepared By: Alan Carpenter Date: March 06, 2008           Passed:  August 8, 2008 Background: "One of the most common sources of conflict in a community occurs when people don't do what they say they'll do". Diana Leaf Christian. This policy establishes a protocol for creating a system of accountability at Windsong....
MEAL PAYMENTS Adult meals $3; Children’s meals $1.50 (7/12/01), which includes a $.50 and $.25 per meal surcharge to pay for all of the kitchen’s costs including stock items, bottled water, supplies, replacing dishes and equipment, and the like (12/94?) To participate in the meal system, there must be a deposit paid for each adult ($50) and each child ($25) (12/94?) If you want to eat meals in the community, you will need to pre-pay a set amount (we recommend $100 but that is...
  MEAL SYSTEM (no clear records found on any item here) Meal system 10/00 and affirmed 6/01DB Policies and Process Paper (?) (12/3/94) Cooks will list ingredients of menus and alternative menus when signing up on meal charts. Cooks are responsible for cooking for all our dietary needs. Individuals are responsible for their own Late Plates Cooks are asked to prepare for 4-6 extra people when they cook in order to insure there will be...
Listen with respect Share the airtime Be careful about interrupting Take responsibility for your own feelings, reactions and interpretations Focus the discussion where it needs to go Raise hands before speaking. All focus on one conversation. No one should be called on twice on a particular topic until all those who want to have spoken once Our goal is that our meetings will start and end on time.
Membership Process 1. Visitor attends at least one business meeting as an observer or attends a social. 2. Sponsor is assigned, if appropriate. They serve as liaison and provide information packet to potential member. 3. Visitor pays a non-refundable $250 consideration fee (payable to Gainesville Cohousing) and becomes a participating but non-voting member. 4. Participating member then attends at least five business meetings/socials over a minimum of two months. 5. Membership committee posts status reports on website so participating members always know where they stand. 6....
New Residents Welcoming and Orientation Package We hope these notes make it a little easier for you to settle into your new home at Windsong.  This packet is not meant as a comprehensive guide to living at Windsong.  Rather it represents a brief over-view of important information. GOVERNANCE AND DECISION MAKING Windsong is a legal strata and is thus subject to the Strata Property Act.  We do not elect a strata council as described in the Act. Our by-laws allow us to include every Windsong resident in our decision making process. All decisions in Windsong are made by consensus at...
One of our residents writes: “Truly it is auspicious to find this place and time together to create what we need most in our lives. To go the full mile together in this space (and beyond) requires a personal commitment to awareness.” To support this commitment and to help us to realize our needs over the long term we have identified a number of guidelines that serve as points of reflection and reference from which to model our communication and actions. Responsibility - In all situations we intend to take responsibility for our own feelings. Ultimately, no one can make us feel....
Official business includes: • Work parties and outside contractors doing work here. • Team notices - between meetings • Community meetings and minutes • Notices and meetings • Proposals for inclusion in community meetings Official notices will be posted on the bulletin board by the mail boxes and also posted on the windsong-biz@googlegroups.com. If the notice is urgent it will be posted with a red card, if it is important a yellow card is attached.
A sample Operating Agreement presented by Jonathan Klein at the 2008 Cohousing Conference: Download
Organizational Model Background to how we got here. This proposed organizational structure is the product of several Council meetings investigating: • What works here at Creekside? • What we’ve seen work elsewhere. • What seems to need change to work better? • What tasks are we doing to keep our Community...
CREEKSIDE COMMONS COHOUSING ORGANIZATIONAL MODEL   Background to how we got here… This proposed organizational structure is the product of several Council meetings investigating: - What works here at Creekside? - What we’ve seen work elsewhere? - What seems to need change to work better? - What tasks are we doing to keep our Community & facilities functioning? - 5 alternate models of organization (based on previous meeting feedback) & what still   needs attention   At the March 13, 2010 Council meeting, the Organizational Review team was tasked with creating a hybrid...
ORIENTATION OF NEW MEMBERS June 6, 2008 Requirements to get onto the waitlist for owners or renters...
1. We find beauty and wisdom in nature’s design and seek to emulate it in our village. 2. We value caring and respectful interactions with members of our village, guests, the surrounding neighborhood, society, all living things, and the earth. 3. We approach change and challenges with open-minded rather than dogmatic attitudes. 4. We have an egalitarian power and decision-making structure. 5. We make and honor agreements with great care and sincerity. 6. We balance participation in the village with individual needs, and welcome the opportunities for engagement, fun and enjoyment that...
We are an urban cohousing ecovillage cultivating supportive relationships with each other, the larger community and the Earth.
Parking Agreement - Trillium Hollow 2007 Parking Agreement There are currently 34 covered parking spaces and approximately 12 uncovered parking spaces on the property. 29 of the covered parking spaces have a full wall in front of them which can be used for storage of personal items. (see Storage agreement below) NOTE: See the diagram posted on the bulletin board across from the Laundry Room. Each of the 29 units is assigned one regular parking space within the garage. These parking spaces and/or the wall in front of the space may be loaned by one resident to another resident at...
Parking Allocation - Creekside Commons 2007 Parking Allocation Background: on the plan Creekside residents have been allocated 36 parking stalls and 
Creekside visitors have been allocated 28 stalls including 2 disabled stalls. Values: to make sure there is fair and equitable allocation of parking stalls, giving 
consideration to those with access issues first, then closest to home. 
 Rationale: Residents of Creekside will need to know where they may park when we 
move in. 
 Proposal: We have allocated parking stalls to residents with identified...

Pages