These are general questions often asked. For more information please see our Cooperative Information page.

What is a cooperative?
A Cooperative is a business owned by the people who use it. Each member of Westerfield Townhouses has an equal vote in the Cooperative.

What is membership?
A small cash investment purchases your membership in the Cooperative and makes you one of the 258 owners who enjoy the advantages of ownership with the convenience of renting. Your monthly payments cover your fair share of the Cooperative’s cost without a built-in profit margin.

What is equity value?
See our Equity Value page.

How many townhouses do you have?
We have 258 townhouses.

Do you have any vacancies?
We operate in way that allows us to maintain full occupancy at all times. When an outgoing member vacates their unit they either provide us with a prospective buyer or requests that we assist in finding a qualified applicant from our available wait list. Our current waitlist is over 5 years long, therefore it has been closed to new applicants. You may contact outgoing members directly (with flyers, through contacts, etc.) to inquire about any available units.

Do you allow Pets?
Unlike many apartments, we are pet-friendly! We allow two pets per townhouse. (Fish, hamsters & other small, contained, non-dangerous pets do not apply towards this limit.) You will be required to complete a pet permit and adhere to the pet rules and regulations. There is no size limit however the two pet rule and our pet policies are strictly enforced.

What’s the difference between renting, owning, and being in a cooperative?

COOPERATIVE PLAN RENTING OWNERSHIP
Monthly Cost Your monthly payments are amazingly low. You pay only actual costs. The tenant must pay what the landlord asks The owner’s monthly expenses are much higher.
Total Cost Your costs are cut to the bone: longest mortgage terms, special low interest rate. The tenant’s rent includes high cost of commercial construction and financing. The owner pays for higher mortgage interest rates, uncontrolled profits, closing costs.
Ownership You and the other townhouse residents are the sole members of the property. You occupy the home of your choice for as long as you wish. The tenant owns nothing (except a file of rent receipts). The owner is completely responsible for his/her house.
Liability You have no personal liability — you sign no mortgage or note The tenant has no personal liability. The owner is personally liable for the mortgage and note.
Maintenance Your cooperative takes care of your townhouse inside and out (except redecorating). The tenant has no control over maintenance standards. The owner is fully responsible for all repairs.
Management Your household and every other household each have one vote in an election of directors. Business affairs are handled by a professional management firm. The tenant has no voice whatever in management. The owner alone is responsible for all decisions … and mistakes!
Community Control The elected Board of Directors help establish policy, rules, and standards for your community. The tenant has no control. The owner has no jurisdiction except in court.
If You Have To Move You give notice, and your cooperative may help you sell it, for a small fee to cover overhead expense. The tenant is bound by a lease drawn up by his/her landlord. The owner must sell his/her own house and pay larger brokerage fees.
Increase In Value Your membership can increase in value under a formula written in your Coop By-Laws. You can get credit for improvements. The tenant gains no increase in value. The owner’s equity depends on market factors beyond his/her control.
Tax Benefit You deduct from your income tax report everything paid for interest and real estate taxes. The tenant has little or no tax benefit. The owner can deduct interest and taxes.
Replacements Your cooperative has reserve funds waiting in the bank to replace items as they wear out. The tenant must wait for the landlord to decide when and if to make replacements. The owner must foot the bill for replacements.