Village Cooperative: A new kind of communityJun 01, 2020 03:19PM ● By Melanie Wiseman
Village Cooperative offers hassle-free homeownership for active seniors
Cooperative living isn’t new, but it is to the Western Slope. Co-op housing combines the financial advantages of homeownership with the convenience of community living without the hassles and expense of home maintenance.
Village Cooperative communities boast more than 3,000 members and are currently in nine states, including Colorado’s Front Range.
This fall, Village Cooperative will break ground on a 62-unit, three-story building, just south of Mesa View Senior Living on North Seventh Street in Grand Junction. The community will feature a variety of one- and two-bedroom open-concept designs for singles and couples. At least one person per home must be 62+.
As of this May, over 60 percent of the units were sold.
“The response here has been fantastic!” said Grand Junction Sales Manager Lisa Doudy. “When I was helping my parents transition, the cooperative didn’t exist and it would have been ideal for them.”
No Realtor needed
A cooperative is a nonprofit corporation owned and operated by its members who purchase a share entitling them to occupy a unit and joint ownership of the property.
No Realtor or closing fees are involved as there is no real estate transaction. A reservation simply requires a $500 refundable deposit to select your home.
If you choose to sell your share, the cooperative facilitates the sale to people on the waiting list, without Realtor or closing fees, returning the member’s share plus an estimated 3 percent annual appreciation accrued equity.
Each member contributes monthly (1 percent of share price) to the maintenance and management of the grounds building and common areas.
Lock and leave
Each unit includes a well-appointed kitchen, laundry room with full-sized washer/dryer, and a private balcony. Some homes feature a separate den for those who need office or hobby space.
On the grounds, there are raised gardens, an outdoor barbecue grill and fireplace, a community room with a full-sized kitchen, reading areas, guest suites for visitors, a fitness room, hobby room and a club room with private dining. Each home is allowed two small pets.
If it’s early enough in the construction process, co-op members can choose carpet, floor coverings, countertops and cabinetry color from standard options or select upgrades. Except for your personal belongings, everything in the building is insured for repair/replacement.
Communities have secured entry at all access points, complete with camera monitoring. Secure, heated underground parking gives members peace of mind.
The community lifestyle
Those who choose to live in cooperatives typically desire sharing and participating in community activities and lifestyle.
“As soon as we opened the Grand Junction office in July 2019 and people started buying shares, I organized free monthly member socials,” said Doudy. “I don’t want them to be strangers.”
Members have been treated to a limo-guided Christmas light tour, a Red Cross CPR class, Tai Chi lessons and miniature golf at Bananas. Activities will be self-directed once the building is complete. Members are actively and democratically self-governed.
“It’s a proven fact that if you live socially as you age, you’ll be healthier, happier and live longer,” said Doudy.
One couple from Ridgway bought at the Grand Junction Village Cooperative as soon as it was available after hearing friends in Iowa rave about their new lifestyle in the same community.
“I love what I do because I get to hear all the stories from people on what a difference this option is going to make in their life,” said Doudy.
At Village Cooperative, staff and co-op members believe the greatest difference between life in cooperatives and other housing options for seniors is the attitudes of their members. They reflect a sense of belonging reminiscent of the neighborhood where they lived and raised their families.
For more information about Village Cooperative, call Doudy at 628-3628.Could you live in a tiny home? Read about these Western Slope tiny houses.