Book Review – Let’s Talk About Money

Let’s talk about Money: A conversation guide for Intentional Communities by Eris Weaver

This book is small but user friendly. It has exercises to work with your group on money issues. Of course it’s a hot item and brings up  individual as well as group values.

I like page 32 where the book says “Some want to spend money on X and others don’t. This frequently surfaces when the product or service is one that will be used by a subset of community members: children’s play structure, treadmill, piano….some of us want to do Z ourselves while others want to spend money hiring it out….we need more money in the group coffers, but some of us are unwilling or unable to contribute more”  

Then there is a wonderful solution:

Have your current values statement posted on a wall or chart or hand out copies

Write up the expenditure or decision that is currently vexing the group

For each item on the values list, ask the question “how does this issue connect to this value?”

I think that would help many groups and if you don’t have a clear values statement, make that first!

The other exercise I like is thinking of what you want for something like the common house. In one column you write need, the next column you write want, and in the last column dream.

The book focuses on values, and all of our personal history with money and how these come together in intentional communities.  There is wonderful advice for forming communities on defining “affordable” early one. 

This book is a must for all communities to have in their library (or in hand until the place is built).

About CJ

I was a Spanish teacher for 5 years in the Public School system in 3 different states. I homeschooled and taught at a democratic free school. I heard about cohousing in 2010 and wanted to move in right away. I met a group building one in 2018 and got to move in the summer of 2019. It only took a year to want out.
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