Another option, Viewing.
Manuela and I have pretty well investigated all of the ideas that would involve us beginning this project with others, except perhaps a smaller pilot version. Of course living with a few people and getting to know them well, is far easier than starting with around 30 people who may be to some degree strangers and therefore have many and varied ideas or requirement needs. We certainly don’t have a wealth of experience at setting up living communities at this scale and would obviously expect to encounter challenges that we hadn’t factored in when we brought this project to life. Now that quite a few others are keen to join the Share-It Community we are looking into some other models and or properties that would kick start the project as early as the spring 2022.
For example, our initial ideas are based as you may have read (How are we funding this page) on a ‘smallish’ capital investment of 75.000€ and a monthly rental cost of 1.300€ to cover all of the community spending on a monthly basis. This single cost would include all food, activities, bills, and renovation/repair costs and something to prepare for later care needs as members grow older. Now we are investigating a broader plan of investment for those that can, and a slightly altered structure of monthly rental costs to suit a smaller more immediate way of getting away from the stress of living under all of the ever growing mental struggles caused by the Pandemic of 2019>. So we are now also considering buying a smaller property, that can be expanded to suit the growing community with immediate needs met and space for more investors/members over the coming years. We can’t yet say exactly what the revised estimate costs would be, but depending on the community decision making as to what people need or require, the figure may be low enough to be affordable with a pension. Our new searches are looking for something with a potential for almost total self sufficiency with water, heating and living accommodation as well as food growing sovereignty.
Obviously we also hope that the new members joining the Share-It Community will bring their own ideas and suggestions to help the project grow organically into something amazing and long lasting. We have now come up with an idea of ‘ownership bundles’ for the capital investment. Maybe a finite number of ‘bundles’ that will enable us to keep expanding the project whilst giving the members a feeling of being invested in the actual property as well as the community. Say 250 ‘bundles’ of a figure that we all agree upon, possibly €10.000 a ‘bundle’ . The members/investors then buy an amount of those ‘bundles’ that best suits their potential to invest in the Share-It Community project, and the more ‘bundles’ we purchase, the bigger the property and the faster the project can grow, and the sooner it can begin. We are still looking at more properties so that we are fully aware of all the potential opportunities to get the Share-It Community underway and in a place that will offer us all a great outlook for the future.
One property of 324m2 we recently saw for example was set on a plot of 9ha, mainly 1000 olive trees with other spaces for food growing and fruit trees of all kinds. The living accommodation was initially two, one bedroom ground floor apartments and an upstairs living space with two separate double bedrooms and one smaller single. Each of these bedrooms had an adjacent bathroom, not specifically en-suite and were spaced so that the bedrooms were not next to each other. A medium sized kitchen and a large dining/living room with amazing views across the valley was a great setting for a smaller community. The property had been totally renovated in those living areas and had central heating powered by both a gas heating system and also a large wood burning stove for a more self sufficient community. Solar heating panels also served this system and some of the apartments had underfloor heating. (On our second viewing of the building itself, (20/12/21) we estimate now that with only minor alterations to a few spaces we could have effectively 8 double bedrooms for the early members to come and live in. Further to that the other buildings could also add more living spaces over the first year or so depending on available funds from the ownership bundles.)
Added to this, the property had more floor metreage (approx 380m2) of buildings yet to be either converted and or restored to full active living spaces. A large workshop/tractor shed would make an amazing community lounge/library/common room. Another outbuilding was actually a triple car garage/workshop, and yet another that needed a new roof would make an amazing industrial community kitchen/food preparation area. There was a wood store and a bread/pizza oven across the driveway close to the main house. Also yet more structures were, several tractor/straw storage sheds, car parking, and an old cow/livestock barn which was specified as a possible reconstruction site for a permanent living social structure. We thought this would be an ideal site for up to ten ground floor bedroom/en-suite bathroom apartments and a large south facing living room and yoga Shala with views across the valley below.
We estimate that currently the building could house between 6 and 9 members with many more after expansion. However the expenditures would be recalculated relevant to the available space and desired needs of the members at this point. So the other costings we previously mentioned (How are we funding this page) would not necessarily fit this property and scale of activities, but we feel that you will also comprehend these variations. And as nothing is yet set in stone and the current members have not yet all agreed as to what, where and how we go forwards we await any new and novel enquiry into joining the Share-It Community project. Without you we won’t be able to go ahead and as things are constantly changing in the world at rapid speeds, we need to be fluid and flexible as to what we can do and where we choose to do this. You may remember that we felt, ‘Il Colle’ (Viewing day 1) would be a great starting point, and I personally would have gone for the property in ‘Gubbio’ (Viewing day 3) because of the possibility for future expansion. Well just to add quickly an idea of the huge potential for buyers of property in Italy at this moment, the current climate is ripe for a bargain. And without any trying on our part one of the estate agents contacted us with regards the ‘Gubbio’ property we saw four weeks ago to ‘let us know’ that the owner was quite keen to sell us the property and was prepared to reduce it a further 350.000€. Wow, that would be a bargain. Previously valued in 2017/18 at 4.500.000€ now at 1.150.000€. If we had that money already we would be moving in in the spring I can tell you. This appears to be the state of the economy at this point, and far from wanting to capitalize on the pain or loss of anyone else, we feel it would be an amazing chance to live the dream of a co-operative sharing community in the sun…..
Please get in touch and let’s make a real change for the better with regards our shared vision for battling loneliness and purposlessness in older age.
The Share-It Community team. x