Rules and Tools: How to Establish Best Practices for Living in Community

One of the most common questions I’m asked is “how do I start a community like this?” I thought I might share just a few quick rules and tools that can help you get started on your path to building community as you age. These 10 things are just a sample of the kinds of things that you will need to establish before considering shared housing.

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  • Agreements. The very first step in establishing community is to determine the shared agreements for individuals living within the household. Are you expecting to live with friends or will you be sharing your house in an unknown roommate situation? Do you own the home or is there a landlord? Leases and agreements should be detailed and will be legally binding once signed by all parties.
  •  Exit Strategy. Each housemate should have an understanding of what would happen when they leave the household. There should be plans in place for breaking a lease early and for providing notice to the home owner. It may also be important to know what to do in the case of a toxic roommate.
  •  Roles. There are many ways to share a home. Each housemate may be very independent and only responsible for themselves and their space, or there may be a desire to share household roles such as cooking or cleaning. This should be established prior to someone moving in.


Click below for the rest of the rules and tools you need for creating your own community.

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Toxic Roommates: Asking Someone to Leave the Community

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It is important to understand that when you are building community there can always be unforeseen circumstances that come up regardless of the rules that you might have in place. So, when making arrangements for new housemates to enter the home it is important to know what to do if it doesn’t work out. How do you handle toxic personalities and what is the safest way to ask them to leave? Here is some practical advice for handing this kind of unpleasant situation in your shared home.

1. Understand your rights a tenant or homeowner. Much of your leverage when it comes to asking a housemate to leave is based on the original wording of their lease agreement. Laws surrounding tenant eviction vary from state to state so be sure to check with your landlord or, if you own the home, check with your local government. Since community living can be based on home ownership or a rental situation it is important to know where you stand before a situation occurs.

I encourage you to click below for two more important tips on handling negative situations.

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Women For Living in Community