Tuesday, 5 October 2010

Welcome To Our Blog (by Hannah)

Hi there -

We've been talking about setting up a website for some time, and it's been decided that, for now, this is the most straight forward way to do it - so here we are!

The Golem Housing Co-operative is a small, fledgling co-op based in Swansea. At the moment there are 6 adults, and we have a new member on the way in November as I am currently 34 weeks pregnant. We're hoping to be able to buy a house for us all to live in, so that we can provide ourselves with affordable housing. We're also all fans of co-operative living, and have been learning about things such as consensus decision making to help with this.

Currently four of us live together, one lives in the next street and one lives about a 20 minute walk away, but we are doing all that we can to build the sense of community between us until we all live together by doing things like having a cooking rota so that we can eat together most nights, buying food together through a Suma order, and having lots of lovely meetings. :-)

Living in shared housing is often seen as something that people do when they're young, and it's usually presumed to be a stepping stone on the way to renting our own place and eventually buying our own house. This is generally seen as the cultural ideal, but does it always make sense? As a group we enjoy lots of aspects of communal living. We can share costs for bills and repairs. We can all do our bit around the house. Sharing cooking saves energy and makes more efficient use of everyone's time. By sharing space we are making better use of already existing housing, reducing the need to build more. When we need someone to talk to, there's often someone there to have a cup of tea with.

The social, environmental and financial benefits of living together are enormous, and we are hoping to take this to the next level by becoming our own landlords too. This will mean that we can make long-term improvements to the property we live in, and build a stable, long-term community where we can support each other.

This blog is a place for us to write about our journey towards buying a house, building a community, and expanding and sharing our skills and interests. We'd love to hear from anyone interested in housing co-ops, the environment, reskilling, or just about anything else. :-)

Much love,

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