Community Types

Coliving and intentional community goes deeper than sharing housing or living in the same housing cluster. Below you will learn more about different types of intentional community and the benefits of living in community.

How are all types of intentional community similar?

Intentional community includes some degree of sharing values, resources, and time. Camaraderie and a shared purpose are part of the appeal. Sociologists have identified three conditions to making close friends: proximity, repeated unplanned interactions, and an environment that encourages people to let their guard down and confide in each other.

Many writers have commented on the difficulty of maintaining friendships in our busy lives. During teen and young adult years, sociability is typically a frequent part of life. In later adulthood, it can be harder to make new friends.

While community life does require that members consider others’ needs and preferences more often, which can be inconvenient, intentional community is an opportunity to recapture a sense of strong social connection. It also offers significant practical benefits.

Types of Intentional Communities and Alternative Housing Solutions

The community pages linked below are intended to point you to the best resources for joining or creating successful ICs of the type you’re interested in. You’ll find multiple resources for setting up time-tested frameworks for effective cooperation. Some of these types of intentional communities are coliving communities. Others share recreational or work resources, but they don’t necessarily share living or work space on a consistent basis.

Something that all intentional communities have in common is that they have shared decision-making and some shared values. In the following list, ICs are organized by categories describing what members are primarily looking for, such as affordable housing or a family-focused IC.

Affordable Housing


Nomadic or Time-flexible Stays

Shared Cultural Values

Self-sufficiency & Sustainability

Care and Social Safety Net

Community as a Work Team

Join as a Subscriber for Extra Visibility

Is there a description above that matches your intended IC? Consider subscribing to a paid membership to get your profile posted on a community types page. Without a subscription, your profile is still searchable and shows up on the Match for Free page. Subscription makes it easier for others to identify your shared interest in a specific community type.

During 2023, subscribers can pay a monthly listing fee of $3 to be featured on pages for the community types listed above.

Ask to be featured for free based on a pro-social mission and a completed profile. See the FAQ What do I get from becoming a subscriber?

Alternative Housing Solutions

Which of these stages are you ready for?

Forming-phase group with location flexibility

  • Forming-phase groups may have a goal of a residential community that is immediate or years away.
  • You may be invested in getting the best fit in personality and values before you together decide on an exact location.
  • You may be saving up and waiting to discover affordable land or build multi-unit co-housing.
  • In this phase, ICmatch gives you the ability to search for and contact potential members whose detailed profiles help you identify compatibility. You can advertise your group as a forming group without a set location, but state your general location preferences.

Forming-phase group with location stability

  • In this phase, you may have found a property you want to purchase and are actively recruiting in order to increase your financial resources.
  • Groups that are searching for members can maintain a group profile to help determine a good fit in values of prospective members.
  • In this phase, you may want to list both with and with puts your forming community on their map, while ICmatch helps you advertise your group for free, benefit from ICmatch’s outreach work, and identify compatibility.

Established intentional community

  • An individual within an established IC may wish to bring in a business partner or life partner.
  • An IC may have vacancy for your group to enter as a household unit.
  • When a group is seeking membership in an established IC that has residences available, the trade-off is that these may be harder to get into, but they are more likely to be stable over time, with a set culture and rules.
  • ICmatch groups that meet their goal to rent or purchase land or residences become an IC. Then post with an IC directory such as the FEC or FIC to get on their map.