We are currently orbiting around steps 4 and 5 on the diagram below, taken from the excellent UK Cohousing leaflet. We welcome your involvement.

See also this create it page on the US Cohousing website, and the extremely useful how to do it page at Community Led Housing.

For further details of recent happenings, see our Blog page.

Things to do: 2020

At the moment I think that we might be able to get as far as the end of stage 7 by the end of 2020. Each of the tasks below can easily be broken down further, and different people can volunteer to help with different tasks and subtasks. One item to discuss will be having a co-ordination committee to oversee our progress through the stages.

Note that all timings are speculative, and that most documents will go through a number of versions before we get to a “final” working version!

By end of May

  • 4 – Identify the group’s site/property criteria
    • Type of location
    • Existing property or new build?
    • Size and requirements
    • Important features
    • If group doesn’t agree, -> 3
  • Others
    • Formally incorporate as a housing co-operative
    • register with the West Midlands Co-op network
    • register with the West Midlands Self-Build
  • Documents
    • Rules (updated model MHOS rules from co-op website)
    • Formalised project plan
    • Updated business plan

By summer break

  • 5 – Build membership
    • Agree membership offer
    • Make communications plan
    • Hold regular open meetings
  • Other
  • Documents
    • prospective site plan v0.1
    • prospectus v0.1
    • roadmap for 2021 by quarter v0.2
    • update existing documents as required

By end of year

  • 6 – Time to get serious
    • Create membership categories of full members, who make decisions and contribute funds and/or time, and supporters
    • Establish working groups to share tasks
    • Keep an eye on your community vision
    • Ensure full members can stay the course – invest in fun!
  • 7 – Assess financial capacity
    • What can you afford?
    • Refine business plan
    • See Community Led Homes website for resources for members on finance and funding
  • Some bits and bobs pulled forward
    • Refine documents previously produced – e.g. decision-making, ethos, etc.
    • Register with the West Midlands Combined Authority
    • First talks with, e.g. Ecology Building Society, Triodos Bank, etc.
  • Documents
    • roadmap for 2021 v0.1
    • roadmap for 2022 v1.0
    • land – site selection criteria v0.1
    • buildings criteria v0.1
    • energy strategy criteria v0.1
    • financial strategy criteria v0.1
    • task groups v0.1
    • sounding out of Triodos, Ecology, etc. v0.1
    • planning criteria v0.1

Things to do: 2021 (Land, financing found? Planning permission requested?)
Things to do: 2022 (Building starts?)
Things to do: 2023 (Move in?)

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