The Masala Co-op was the first house owned by the BHC. Masala began its cooperative existence as the Slovo equity co-op in the mid 1990s, and with support from the City of Boulder’s Division of Housing, became a permanently affordable rental cooperative in 1999, when it was purchased by the BHC.
Our house was originally built more than 100 years ago by Rocky Mountain Joe, a local photographer, mountain man and, all around character. It’s grown and changed since then, expanding, and then getting sub-divided into four apartment units, before the co-op re-combined the living spaces. Today the house has 11 bedrooms and 4 bathrooms on four levels from basement to attic. We’re within easy walking distance of the University of Colorado, Downtown Boulder, the Farmer’s Market, and open space trails. The co-op usually has 11-12 residents, though it has on occasion ranged as high as 14, and can legally accommodate up to 16 residents.
We strive to be a safer space for all diverse walks of life, and we strive towards inclusivity.
As an intentional community, we are interested in cooperation, consent, non-violent communication, active listening towards a mutual understanding, sustainability, social justice; to name a few.
House chores and stewardships, bi-weekly meetings, as well as an annual retreat are required for living at Masala.
Rent and Food Fees
Room Rent Range: $630-$850/month
Food Fee: $140/month
Utilities Included In Rent
The Boulder Housing Coalition (BHC) cooperatives have been developed with grant assistance from the City of Boulder’s affordable housing program. In exchange for this financial support the BHC has signed legal covenants requiring nearly all of the residents of our co-ops to income and asset qualify.
Income Cap for Masala Cooperative: 4 households at $52,680, 4 households at $43,900, and 2 households at $70,240.
Community and Governance
House meetings: Every other week on Wednesday evenings
Decision-making procedures: Consensus
Gardens: Large outdoor space with large & constantly growing garden 🙂
Other: Though we are close to the University of Colorado, we are not a “student co-op.” Because of our income qualification requirements, we cannot accept students under the age of 24 or without income, though we often have several members who are graduate students.
House Dinners: Monday-Thursday Dinners and Sunday Brunch on most weeks
House Dinner Dietary Options: Currently, our common meals are Vegetarian and mostly gluten-free (some residents are omnivorous, and meat is prepared by individuals in the Masala kitchen for private meals). We attempt to meet everyone’s dietary restrictions when making common meals.
Memberships: eGo Carshare , Community Cycles
Passes: RTD ECOpass
Laundry: 1 washer in the house and clotheslines outside
- Within walking distance of
- CU Boulder
- Downtown Boulder
- Boulder Farmer’s Market
- Open Space Trails
- Veggies, greens, and herbs from our gardens in the summer and fall!
- Veggies from CSA in the winter and summer!
- The Masala co-op is dedicated to eating whole organic foods, locally grown when possible.
Trainings and Experience
- Consensus decision-making
- Stewardship Opportunities
- BHC Equity & Social Justice trainings
- BHC Mediation Trainings
Pets: Currently, only small caged animals are allowed with discussion and full house consensus
Tobacco: Not inside, but on the property 20 feet away from the house is okay.
Inclusivity: We actively participate in BHC’s Equity and Social Justice trainings. Anti-oppression is a core value of the BHC. Masala residents, as community members of the BHC are expected to be committed to anti-racist and anti-oppressive efforts and strive to attend to issues of power, privilege, and oppression within the BHC, and the Masala Co-op house.
Organizational Ties: Boulder Food Rescue, Community Cycles, and the INVST Community Studies program at CU. We try and send at least one house member to the NASCO Institute Co-op Conference in Ann Arbor each year. We’re one of the founding members of the Boulder Community Housing Association (BoCHA).
House Chores: Signed up for 2 weeks in advance — including house cleaning, cooking, cleaning up after shared meals, food shopping, etc. Between chores, house stewardships, and meetings, we currently request that each house member spend 6 hours per week on our labor system.
Sustainability: Masala has a 4.5 kW solar array installed on the roof, which provides a significant fraction of the house’s energy.