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Guest rooms are primarily for the friends and family of community members. Many communities also welcome people from other cohousing communities who need a place to stay and prospective cohousers who want to get a feel for community. By inviting a broad range of people, the community shares the value of cohousing and gains engagement with a large variety of interesting people.
In general, guest rooms are cleaned by the community member who is hosting the guests. This includes laundry for linens and basic cleaning of bedroom and bathroom. Most communities have a plan for occasional deep cleaning of the common house; this cleaning can include guest rooms. This may be a community work day, the job of an individual, or a paid service covered by community funds.
The size of guest rooms varies, as do the furnishings. Most communities have two guest rooms, and often one is furnished with a queen bed and the other with two twins. If room allows for a trundle bed or pack-n-play, this may also be provided. Typically some sort of nightstand is present. Other possible furnishings include a desk, suitcase stand, and dresser (which may be used to store linens). Linens (sheets, towels and spare blankets) are often used items supplied by community members.
Most communities do not charge members for routine use of guest rooms for family and friends. Often there is a suggested donation of $15 to $35 per night for guests who are not connected directly to the community. Extended stays of more than a week are charged by some communities for any guest.
Most communities maintain a guest room calendar accessible to all community members. Most often this is an electronic calendar such as Google Calendar or the like. In some communities, any member may add their name. In others, requests are sent to a single person who manages the calendar for the community.
Reservations are generally first come, first served. Some communities have a limit on how many nights a single member can reserve in a year.
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