There are many ways to set up housing groups – here are some examples:
- BEND – Bega Eco-Neighbourhood Developers is a not-for-profit Incorporated Association in Bega, NSW. Within BEND an affordable eco-housing cooperative formed and partnered with an existing Community Housing provider. www.thebegavalley.org.au/bend.html
- At Christie Walk, a small eco-city development in Adelaide affordability was achieved by people creating a non-profit development cooperative and building company. See www.urbanecology.org.au
Architect and town planner, Gabi Bohnet, describes the Tenant Syndicates in detail on the page Living Space for Everybody. Here is a quick introduction:
In Germany the Tenant Syndicate (www.syndikat.org) acquires properties and permanently removes them from the speculative housing market. There are currently 33 independent housing projects in the syndicate, which are all autonomous and self-organised. Their style and methods of operating may vary widely but they are all connected in that each one has a representative of the Syndicate on their board of directors with veto power, should the group ever be inclined to sell out.
Each housing project pays a small amount of their rental income into a solidarity fund which is used to legally and financially support new projects. Other finances have been mostly sought through private direct credits of lenders who find this socially ethical project worthwhile. The Tenant Syndicate is willing to include projects overseas.
Both the Cooperatives and Syndicates have in common that the members / tenants participate in designing their own living space and surroundings. This allows each project to become architecturally, ecologically and socially authentic and real. http://www.planningforreal.org.uk/