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Cooperatives offer a sense of community

View a video about senior cooperative housing, developed by the Senior Cooperative Foundation

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“It’s not about real estate – it’s about relationships!” Cooperative community life is as unique as the people living in the cooperative. Here, you find people facing life issues together, and opportunities to participate socially with others who share similar interests. You will find time to develop new friendships, as well as the choice to enjoy the privacy of your individual home.

Cooperatives provide freedom from home maintenance

Rest assured, home maintenance responsibilities are taken care of for you. All repairs inside the home you have selected as well as the entire building, including service calls, lawn care, and snow removal are handled for you and included in the monthly fee. You have the assurance of knowing your home is secure, and with heated underground parking, you never have to battle the weather. Also, you can leave for a weekend, or the entire winter, secure in the knowledge that your home will be taken care of through our “While You’re Away” vacation service.

What do cooperative members have to say?

“All the comforts of home are available here, and there is time to enjoy them, without the challenges of the house and yard.”

“New friends – old time family.”

“I write fewer checks than I did in my previous home – so much is included in one monthly fee.”

“I am so happy that we chose to do this when we could do it ourselves and when it was fun, rather than a chore.”

From an article written by Dennis Johnson of the Senior Cooperative Foundation,
published in the Northfield News 1/10/09

The market for single-family homes has recently been characterized by declining market values. In contrast, the value of a membership share in a cooperative appreciates at a fixed amount of 1–2 percent per year. Co-ops have experienced none of the ups and downs that impact single-family home values. True, it does not appreciate similar to increasing market values of single-family homes, but it also does not experience the value declines. In the 30 years since the first senior housing cooperative was created, member shares have steadily — and reasonably — increased in value. Shares that are offered for sale normally sell quickly because cooperatives have waiting lists of potential buyers. Some members compare co-ops shares with certificates of deposit: modest return with little risk.

The number of older people is growing rapidly — a trend that will continue for the next 30 years. In the United States, over 85 percent of households over 55 own their own homes, and it is clear that many of them want to continue to be owners — not renters — in the future. That means we are at the beginning of a rapidly expanding growth in demand for homes designed for ownership by older adults.

Senior housing cooperatives have already proven themselves as the “option of choice” for Minnesota seniors.

By becoming a member in a senior housing cooperative, in addition to a place to live, you are buying into a lifestyle — an enlivened community for independent living. One of the most common responses I get from senior housing cooperative owners is, “I should have done this years ago.”

For more information on housing cooperatives, visit the Senior Cooperative Foundation