Frequently Asked Questions
What is the ownership model for the lots and units?
Each lot and dwelling unit will be individually owned. The individual owners will be responsible for the upkeep and maintenance of their lot and home.
Will ownership be restricted to old students?
Restrictions on ownership would limit the ability for owners to get conventional bank financing for home construction and purchase of a home. Therefore, in the initial phase, there will be no legal restriction placed on the ownership of a lot or home by an old student. That said, the lots are currently being marketed only to old students. A requirement that owners give the homeowners association or other residents first option to purchase a lot and home is under consideration.
Will assisted living services and long term care be provided?
Assisted living services and long term care are not part of the project. However, it is expected that the residents will organize these types of services as needed and take advantage of the ability to share the cost of healthcare professionals that they need. For example, a group of residents could get together and pay for an on-site nurse or caregiver to serve multiple households.
How far away are the nearest medical facilities?
The nearest hospitals are in Fresno about an hour away. There are some health care clinics in Oakhurst and several ambulance services based about 30 minutes drive from the village.
How much will the units cost?
The goal is to keep the pricing of the units close to the median price of a home in North Fork with a similar number of bedrooms. However, if the opportunities for sharing resources are accounted for, the overall cost to live in the village is expected to be less than owning and maintaining a similar home in North Fork.
Will there be monthly homeowners association fees?
Yes, there will be monthly fees to cover the cost of maintaining the common facilities and shared infrastructure (roads, water, wastewater treatment, landscaping). These fees will be set by the homeowners association which is managed by the residents.
What will be the policies governing the residents?
The residents will decide on the policies for the homeowners and residents. These are likely to include policies that are conducive to practicing Vipassana meditation.
When will the lots be available for sale?
Once the internal roads and utilities are in place, the county will approve the final subdivision map and the lots can be sold. Once there is funding available for the construction of this infrastructure it will take about one year to complete. At this time we are unable to predict how long it will take to find households and individuals that are able to contribute funds for the infrastructure. If you are interesting in contributing funds to the project, please see the Founding Members section.
When will the homes be built?
Each lot owner will be responsible for financing and scheduling the construction of their home. Costs can be reduced if several owners coordinate the construction of their units. Construction of a unit may take 8 months to a year to complete.
Will financing be available to build and/or purchase a lot and home?
Based on the qualifications of the owner, conventional construction loans and home mortgages can be used to build or purchase a home. Typically these loans, require that the owner cover the cost of the lot with their own financing.
How will the construction of the infrastructure be funded?
The infrastructure construction will be funded by capital contributions from founding members and overseen by the Standing Stone Village LLC. We are currently seeking old students to become members of this LLC. Members of the LLC will be able to apply their capital contribution towards the purchase of a lot or recoup their investment from the proceeds of the sale of the lots. Members of the LLC will be given priority for lot selection and be offered the purchase of the lot at a discounted price. Please fill out the contact form if you would like more information on becoming a founding member.
How will the construction of the common house and common facilities be funded?
Construction of the common house and other shared facilities will be funded by a portion of the lot sale price and/or through private financing. If private financing is used, then the homeowners association will pay the monthly principal and interest payments for the private loan through fees assessed from the residents.
Can I customize the design of my own home?
Customization to the pre-set designs will be allowed at the expense of the owner and pending approval of an architectural review committee. Each owner, will be able to select the interior finishes (flooring, countertops, paint color, etc) for their home at the time of construction. Founding members will participate in the design process for the homes and common facilities.
Will tiny homes be allowed?
The home designs will be smaller than what is currently the convention for new homes. If there is interest from the residents, the designs can be modified to make them even smaller.
Are wildfires an issue?
The area of the village is susceptible to wildfires. These issues will be in part mitigated by a fuel reduction and fire safety plan implemented by the homeowners association. The roofs and exterior walls of all buildings will be constructed with fire-resistant materials. Interior fire sprinklers will be installed in all buildings and the water system will have two fire hydrants giving access to a 40,000+ gallon water storage tank. The local fire station is also less than 2 miles from the village.
Will there be an age restriction for residents?
While it is expected that most residents will be older, there will be no restrictions on the age of residents and households with children are welcome.
What consideration is being given to energy use and environmental impacts?
As required by the California Building code that will be in effect in 2020, all homes will have to be net-zero, meaning that they must produce all the energy that is used by a household. This will be accomplished by an energy-efficient design and by the use of solar to produce electricity. By clustering the houses, the impact on the environment is also greatly reduced. Additionally, by sharing resources (rides to town, vehicles, landscaping, and recreational equipment), the overall consumption by households can be significantly reduced. The residents at their discretion may also find other ways to reduce their environmental impact.
Has the county approved the project?
In the fall of 2018, the Madera County Board of Supervisors and the Planning Commission conditionally approved the subdivision. The conditions are to construct the internal roads, parking areas, provide for storm drainage, bring utilities to each lot, and create a wildfire fuel reduction program. Once the conditions are met, the county will approve the subdivision and the lots can be sold to individual households.