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A Collective House is about shared living:
- it is neither a commune, co-housing, nor a co-rental place but a type of loose intentional community
- it is a creative response to extremely high urban real estate prices and monthly rental fees
- it keeps rents low and cost of living low while increasing sense of community
- it is a return to normal tribal way of living (before modern nuclear and partial-nuclear family living)
- it is usually composed of interesting housemates doing very interesting projects
- it is not suitable for those who just want to save money; the community aspect is essential.
Ways to start or join a Collective House
- gather a group; do some visioning ~ 3 month, craigslist potential housemates, more visioning, and let things coalesce
- to find available spots in collective houses: craigslist keyword "collective" in the "housing" section
- every one has to participate in household chores (it keeps the place democratic)
- rules are kept to a bare minimum and reviewed regularly for appropriate tweaking
- establishing mission statements and common lifestyle goals is good (some do) but optional (some don't)
- long term commitments, although good, are not mandatory nor enforced
- one of the biggest collective decisions to make is to pick a foodstyle for shared meals
- many houses end up choosing Vegan as the foodstyle all can agree to live with (housemates can supplement privately)
- many houses agree on some degree of kitchen permaculture
- it is important to accept that sometimes a housemate leaves and a new one come in
- it is important to accept that some housemates are "deep cleaners" and others not (must enforce only agreed minimum cleaning requirements)
- Vancouver Collective House Network workshop shows benefits of shared living, straight.com (Vancouver online news), April 15, 2010.
- Vancouver Craigslist searching "collective" in "housing" section