Tue 19 Jun 2018 6:23PM

NORC's as opportunity to Retrofit cohousing, build Intentional Communities?

BW Bill Wendel Public Seen by 311

Invite members of Revolutionize Your Retirement Facebook group to discuss this thread as well as other members of RE2020:

Dorian, thanks for the invitation to introduce ourselves and access past programming. My intro: Trained as a city planner, intrigued by need / opportunities to rethink senior housing, downsizing, and shared housing. Competition between baby boomers and Millennials for affordable housing is likely to be part of Harvard's report today on the State of the Nation's Housing. Other issues and potential solutions were introduced by your interview with Louis Tenenbaum after his article "Aging in Place Needs Out of the Box Thinking" appeared in Forbes 18 months ago:

Policy, Housing and an Aging Society

Our opportunity: NORC's or Naturally Occurring Retirement Communities in places like Boston invite us to experiment with aging in community. Eager to test the intergenerational demand from both buyers; renters, too.

Most of the buzz about real estate start-ups building CoLiving focuses on new construction and millennials, and "housing as a service" rather than bottom up, self-organizing intentional communities. As some of your readers / listeners know, there are senior cohousing groups have difficulty finding sites so the approach described in the article above makes me cheer:

Modern Housing With Village Virtues

"... there are alternatives to building from the ground up. More recently, people have been gravitating toward what is called *** “retrofit cohousing,” *** in which neighbors transform an existing neighborhood over time. There are 11 retrofit cohousing communities operating in the United States today, and more in development, according to the Cohousing Association."

Am aware of several sites in Greater Boston, and would like ideas about ways to test potential demand for each from intergenerational homebuyers or renters. Rather than merely selling condos to the highest bidder, believe there is an opportunity to "curate micro-communities of co-owners or housemates."

What's the best way to do that? Understand that thread is was not intended for that purpose, so invite feedback on the collaborative site below. Here's a preview of that IDEA STARTER on RE2020:

"All my friends are saying the same thing: 'We're done with house hunting. We want to find a community.' " Is the #DIY CoLiving / CoHousing / Intentional Communities the next big thing? Is it already?


Bill Wendel
Cambridge, MA


Bill Wendel Tue 19 Jun 2018 6:51PM

Preview from Harvard's LIVESTREAM on State of the Nation's Housing. Follow #harvardhousingreport or watch 4-5:30pm ET via:

Unsustainable. Globalization/commodification of #RealEstate disconnecting prices from fundamentals. Can competition betw/ babyboomers & millennials for #affordableHousing morph into collaboration? Turn NORC's into Intentional Communities? http://bit.ly/REtroFit2020
#CoLiving #RE2020



Bill Wendel Tue 19 Feb 2019 7:55PM

COLIVING UPDATE: Newest buzz on alternative forms of shared housing from Massachusetts Healthy Aging Collaborative & “The Communal Living Issue” of Curbed, an national real estate / housing site with local editions including Boston: