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  • ‘Collaborative housing’ encompasses a growing range of innovative responses to rising housing costs and demographic and social changes.
  • It may improve the range of tenure options for the growing number of people who cannot afford home ownership in Australia.
  • It requires good legal design – as individual and group property rights may need to be adjusted using contracts, covenants, and hybrid or customised ownership and governance structures.

Collaborative housing is an umbrella term for housing models that prioritise community-building, affordability, resource-sharing and resident participation. These models are becoming increasingly relevant in a housing market with limited options. Common features include:

  1. A mix of private and shared spaces. Residents determine what is shared and it often extends beyond spaces to vehicles, tools and household goods, resulting in resource efficiency and sustainable, liveable cities.
  2. An intentional focus on building a sense of community through design facilitating informal social contact and sharing, without compromising household privacy.
  3. Participatory approaches giving residents a significant role in the scheme’s design, development and governance.
  4. Emphasis on affordability, superior design quality and, often, an accessible location.

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