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A new residential option is available for Brechin seniors with the opening of the first purpose-built shared home in Ontario. Brechin Manor is an exceptional 6 suite shared home that provides seniors with a warm, family style and supportive living environment while also promoting individual autonomy in the decision-making within their home. Co-housing originated 25 years ago in Denmark, but the model developed by Muskoka businesswoman Shelley Raymond is a further evolution of this concept.
“My parents were in their own home,” says Raymond, “but felt burdened with the responsibilities of maintaining a house and the on-going everyday tasks required. They longed for a less complicated life, but didn’t believe a retirement home was a suitable option for them at that time. I felt compelled to create what we couldn’t find – an option for the healthy senior who wants to retain their decision-making but also wants to be free of burdensome chores and live in a friendly environment.”
Solterra (named after Raymond’s own home) facilitates the renovation or custom building of a home for occupancy by four to 6 seniors. Each senior (or couple) has their own private space, which includes a sole bedroom or more, such as a bedroom, bath and sitting room combination or den area. These private areas are clustered around central common areas such as the kitchen and living room. The extent of support services provided by the home are largely determined by the individuals who live in the home, but staff can provide services such as cooking, housekeeping, errands, gardening, social events, trips, home maintenance and transportation.
Perhaps the most appealing characteristic of a Solterra home is the structuring of the decision-making process. Each individual in the home, along with their chosen advocate, comprises the home’s board of directors and decides how the home is to be run and the services they wish to have available. Co-owners purchase an equity interest in the home and are registered on title as Tenants in Common. Co-owners are subject to the provisions of the Co-ownership agreement and when they want to or need to leave the home their interest can be listed on MLS with their real estate agent. The financial comparison with other residential options for seniors is a compelling testimony for the affordability of the Solterra choice.
“It’s also an incredibly social and participatory model,” explains Raymond. “Our seniors will have many choices of activities and won’t have to step far from their private area to find a friend.”
Brechin Manor is featuring a Grand Opening with house tours, a barbecue and ribbon cutting ceremony on Thursday, June 13th, from 11 am – 2 pm. The official opening and ribbon cutting ceremony is at 12 pm and further information is available at toll free 1-877-833-0007.
Media Contact:
Shelley Raymond, President (705) 645-0007
Solterra Co-Housing Ltd.

Filed under: Barrie Community InformationSimcoe CountyUncategorized

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