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Frequently Asked Questions

Is NewCoh only focused on building a residential community?

In addition to working towards a residential community, NewCoh members work towards a sense of community by meeting together to share resources, research more environmental and sustainable ways of life. We will support projects that align with our vision and goals.

How will our NewCoh residential community be realised?

The founders of NewCoh have agreed to use a model that involves working with a developer who will buy land that suits our needs and work with us to design and build our homes and joint facilities. Future residents of NewCoh would buy ‘off the plan’ from the developer.

What is the benefit for a developer to do this?

In this model, NewCoh is a buyers group and the developer has ready made sales without any marketing. Cohousing has grown in popularity around the world. The experience of working with this model may provide further work for the developer with other groups who are interested in cohousing.

What is the benefit for us to do it this way?

This model allows the cohousing development to get the community we want to live in without needing to have the substantial resources required to buy and develop the property. We take fewer risks.

Would each residence be privately owned?

Every residence in NewCoh would be privately owned under either a Strata or Community title. We have received legal advice on the optimum ownership model for us. Owners would also jointly share ownership of shared space and facilities (such as a common house, workshop etc) to which all residents would have access.

What is the time frame for the community to be ready to buy into?

NewCoh has had ongoing contact with a number of developers who have expressed interest in our model. The first step is to come to agreement with a developer on land that is in our desired Newcastle suburbs, reasonably close to the city and to services and transport. Once this is purchased, we think the design and construction phase would be about 3 years. At this stage we are still pursuing a developer who is willing to work with our model.

Will I have any say about the design and inclusions of the complex?

Once we have formed a workable relationship with a developer, NewCoh would host workshops for interested members who are involved at the planning stage to determine key aspects of the design and inclusions of the complex, particularly relating to shared facilities. A NewCoh representative would then brief the architect used by the developer on these agreed preferences.

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Will my residence have private outdoor space?

Each residence would have its own private outdoor space.

When will I have to put $ in and how much?

As we would be working with a developer, the cost for individual dwellings would be in line with market prices for apartments in the area. Once the preliminary stages of the development were achieved, we would be able to advise the amount of an initial deposit. Our model involves asking the developer to agree to a deposit of 5% of the cost of a residence to buy off the plan, once the design is agreed to. A further 5 % may be paid before construction begins. The deposit would be made on signing of a contract that commits the developer to providing the resident that is described in the contract. The deposit money would go into a trust account – not to the developer.

What sort of residences will be available?

There will be a range of residences available, from studio to 3-bedroom apartments – and possibly a few townhouses, depending on the site.

What transport facilities would be available?

Parking for cars would be on the outside edges of the complex. This ensures that the common areas are child-friendly and will afford people the opportunity of neighbourly interaction.

We may also be able to facilitate car sharing for those who are interested and, of course, would ensure there are secure places for bicycle parking.

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What about ongoing rates, fees, etc?

Once we get further along in our planning, we should have an idea of ongoing levies/fees that our residents would need to pay. In general, we aim to be as self-managed as possible to reduce the costs involved.


Can I keep a pet? 

Yes!  NewCoh has a pet policy. It is included in our Members Handbook.

How will decisions be made by residents?

The link to our Members Handbook will also take you to an outline of our Decision-Making Process. This policy will allow all members to have a say in decisions that affect them. All residents can be involved in meetings so that everyone living with us can play an active role in managing our community.

What if people don’t get along?

NewCoh members have developed Communication Guidelines that we hope will help people to resolve issues before they turn into anything major. We have also developed guidelines for Conflict Resolution which may be helpful if issues arise. Our Members Handbook outlines all these approaches.

We realise that we won’t agree with everything others do, but want to use the principle of tolerance and support in our dealings with other members and the world in general, as this makes for a happier life. Aspirational? Yes we are!

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