Cohousing: Joining Affordable, Sustainable and Collaboratively-Governed, Single Family Neighborhoods

39 Real Estate L. J. 113 (2010)

Zoning & Planning Law Handbook Chapter 16, 2011

18 Pages Posted: 25 Mar 2010 Last revised: 25 Apr 2017

See all articles by Michael N. Widener

Michael N. Widener

Bonnett, Fairbourn, Friedman & Balint; Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University

Date Written: March 18, 2010


For many Americans purchasing a home in a conventional single-family subdivision is and will remain impossible. Credit challenges facing this population mandate rethinking why, where and how we build, and occupy, dwellings and their neighborhoods, and understanding how our choices affect sustainable and supportive communities. If local government officials, planning and design professionals and construction industry leaders fail to respond, sensibly and swiftly, to declining renewable resources and downward-spiraling personal net worth, social and ecological equilibrium will be mightily disrupted. This essay urges new behaviors challenging urban planning, development and neighborhood governance conventions. It affords one example of new strategies, conjoining themes of affordability, sustainability, safety and rational neighborhood governance, in devising a housing market for a changed dwelling-owner class.

Keywords: affordability, housing, sustainable, real property, shipping containers, cohousing, communities, community governance, homeowners association, alternative housing, ISBU

JEL Classification: H81, K11, K23, Q15, Q32, R14, R21, R31, R52

Suggested Citation

Widener, Michael N., Cohousing: Joining Affordable, Sustainable and Collaboratively-Governed, Single Family Neighborhoods (March 18, 2010). 39 Real Estate L. J. 113 (2010) . Available at SSRN:

Michael N. Widener (Contact Author)

Bonnett, Fairbourn, Friedman & Balint ( email )

2325 East Camelback Road
Suite 300
Phoenix, AZ 85016
United States

Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University ( email )

Prescott, AZ 86301
United States

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