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Are We a Match?

Higher Ground residents in the Common House enjoying a meal together

Expectations of Higher Ground residents

What does it mean to be an active part of a co-housing community? First, it means a willingness to engage with neighbors and participate in community activities. For most, this is 2 – 6 hours per month, per adult. Second, it means periodic leadership in some aspect of neighborhood life, such as the garden, social events, landscaping, community meals, or with another committee. This involves another 2 – 6 hours per month, per adult.

Moreover, because Higher Ground’s motto states that we are a “community dedicated to people and the environment,” our expectation is that new residents will strive to lead an environmentally sustainable lifestyle. Activities such as reducing garbage, air-drying laundry, carpooling, bicycling, and similar sustainable choices are strongly encouraged.

Most commons maintenance is done by neighbors working together on monthly Saturday morning Community Days which foster friendships and help keep HOA dues low. The same Saturday afternoons are for other creative community events.

If you answer yes to more than 15 of the following questions, Higher Ground may be a good fit for you!

  1. Do you like the idea of getting to know your neighbors?
  2. Do you enjoy potlucks and like the idea of cooking for neighborhood dinners?
  3. Would you be willing to contribute to the governance of your neighborhood by serving on the homeowners’ association board or a committee?
  4. Would you enjoy participating in community work days to help common areas and facilities look and function their best?
  5. Would you enjoy caring for your neighbors’ pets and appreciate them caring for yours?
  6. If you have kids, do you like the idea of exchanging childcare with your neighbors?
  7. Would you like to help maintain our lovely community house?
  8. Are you comfortable with dues of $93 per month to help your neighborhood be a great community?
  9. Do you like the idea of interacting in a positive way with neighborhood kids?
  10. How about helping senior neighbors grow old gracefully by lending a hand?
  11. Might you enjoy working in a community garden or orchard?
  12. When you see a problem in your neighborhood, do you think, “How can I help improve this?”
  13. Do you like the idea of shared community open space and helping to care for it?
  14. Are you comfortable with houses close together, in order to protect more community open space?
  15. Might you sometimes enjoy celebrating a holiday with your neighbors?
  16. Do you want to be part of a community dedicated to reducing its environmental impact?
  17. Are you comfortable lending and borrowing tools, cars, outdoor equipment, etc. with your neighbors?
  18. Do you enjoy sharing your interests with others by creating and organizing activities around them?

So, are we a match? If you think you may be, attend a community meal, board meeting, or simply stroll around our neighborhood and talk to folks. The bottom line is: for Higher Ground to be a special neighborhood, we need residents who are eager to roll up their sleeves and enjoy the work and fun activities that make it special. Living at Higher Ground is not a spectator sport! For more information, contact Carlos Wysling at brazilcharlie@hotmail.com

Is Bend, Oregon a fit for you?

Bend is a rapidly growing city of about 95,000 with a diverse economy. It stands at the place where the Cascades Mountains meet the high desert of Central Oregon, and straddles the lovely Deschutes River. Bend serves as the regional center for government, medicine, commerce, and the arts. While rapid growth brings challenges, it also provides employment opportunities, lively politics, and a flourishing arts scene. Bend is blessed with a strong (though stretched) school system, and a stellar park and trail system. While some natural areas are overused, a modest drive provides abundant opportunities for solitude in numerous National Forests, State Parks, and on BLM lands.

Higher Ground residents, like most Bendites, bike, hike, canoe, kayak, ski, climb, camp, backpack, raft, and fish, as well as write, meditate, worship, make art, sing, play music, and dance!