Green Pastures Senior Cooperative
Northwest Cooperative Development Center (NWCD) provided mentoring, coaching, and finally development assistance to help residents of a Senior Mobile Home Park problem solve the potential sale of the community. As a result, members of the Steering Committee of Green Pastures in Redmond, Oregon voted to take the next step towards ownership of their manufactured home community to establish Green Pastures Senior Cooperative.
Had the cooperative had not been formed, Green Pastures could have easily been sold to a developer or another owner who could significantly raise rent for personal profit. Significant rent hikes are particularly difficult for owners of manufactured housing because of the significant costs related to relocating.
Since the May 2008 vote, residents will enjoy several benefits that they did not hold as renters. They no longer have to worry about the threat of being evicted from the premises if the owner sells or makes changes to the rental agreement; allowing for long-term investment and improvements. Members also enjoy the stability of monthly payment, building assets under their home, and power over their future in retirement.
The cooperative is non-profit, which allows members to control their rent. As a result, the stability provided by the community causes homes to be more marketable because buyers have the security of knowing there will be no danger of eviction or increased monthly payments. In addition, cooperative members have the ability to vote in cooperative issues, catering democratically to the needs of the community.
After establishing a series of successful resident owned communities in the American Northeast, the NWCDC in partnership with local attorneys, financial consultants, and non-profit housing developers have decided to start this trend along the west coast.
The Green Pastures Senior Cooperative is just one such community in which the NWCDC plans to help assist members to initiate co-ops; and teach them the techniques necessary to maintain, finance, and support a cooperative community.