Living in community
Cohousing is a wonderful way of living. Some describe it as a cross between a condominium neighborhood and a large multigenerational community home. Each family or individual owns their own home. Together they own and manage the land and common house, where dinners and other activities are frequently shared.
Resident owners often do much of the work of maintaining the common house, land, home exteriors, as well as other buildings and gardens. Resources such as the common kitchen, tools, cars, excursions, and short-term personal care can be shared to reduce costs and increase opportunities for interacting with neighbors.
Decisions are made by consensus, leading to ownership of decision making and a relatively high level of personal growth. As Katie McCammett said, when she chaired the 2012 National Cohousing Conference, "Cohousing is the longest, most expensive self-improvement program you can find."
This form of community was brought to the United States from Denmark in the mid-1980s by two architects, Charles Durrett and Katherine McCammet. Currently, there are between 250 to 300 cohousing communities in the U.S. Katie and her husband, Chuck Durrett, are warmly considered the parents of U.S. cohousing.