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Old 03-16-2013, 10:54 AM
Status: "Worst cold of my life!" (set 2 days ago)
Location: Forty Fort
4,106 posts, read 3,143,796 times
Reputation: 8741


Tales of a now-deceased relative:

This woman rented a large home to house her brood of five children, but in addition, she ran the place as a boarding house. This was in the early 1900s. As young people began leaving the rural communities to take jobs in the cities, there was a need for cheap, safe housing. Since the proprietor's family also lived in the house, screening was intense and only the clean and respectable were accepted.

Now this woman ran her show with a heavy hand but the place was clean and the cooking, while plain, was plentiful and good. At any one time, she could have four boarders in addition to her own family. She was always on the lookout for a bigger, more desirable place and would frequently inform the boarders that they would be moving on Monday and given the address of the new place. They left for work on Monday morning and when they came home from work, they reported to the address given to find everything in their room in place, just as it had been at the old house. And dinner on the table at the usual time.

The family told of the time she forgot to tell one of her boys that they were moving and when he came home from school for lunch, he found an empty house. All was not lost, because the new house was only on the next street and a brother was dispatched to get the poor waif.
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Old 03-16-2013, 12:31 PM
157 posts, read 26,817 times
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How many of today's women could handle all that as well as she did?
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Old 03-16-2013, 12:34 PM
Location: Kalamalka Lake, B.C.
1,461 posts, read 1,452,262 times
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Default Now called Homestay

[quote=Komeht;28680937]You know - the old fashioned kind where someone with a house with excess rooms could rent out to traveling workers on a short or mid-term basis. A clean easy place to live in where sometimes meals were provided by the proprietor.

Provided a spacious cheap housing option for young singles looking to get started. Allowed people (often older women) to rent out rooms and keep their homes when otherwise they would have to sell and move from the neighborhood they've spent their whole lives in.

I'm not talking about flop houses. Some could be quite nice - think Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson at 221b Baker Street.[/quoteActually stayed in one in the early sixties to give mom and dad some private time. The lady introduced me to music and it was a great experience for all four of us.

I found a missing relative and his wife, and the story was they lived while married in such accomodations. Common after the war (WW2) with housing demand and bank limitations on mort.

My Hex and I accidently ended up with a house full of japanese homestay kids when my son was born twenty plus years ago. We shared all the costs and meal prep. Sunday was my responsiblity. Would I do it again? Of course, silly.
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Old 03-16-2013, 04:09 PM
1,302 posts, read 1,945,375 times
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The boarding house still exists in other countries. I stayed in one in France years ago (it's still there). They are called foyers - the one I stayed in was for females only, had an age limit of 25 years, and was run by Catholic nuns. I also stayed in something similar in Brazil several years later. Both served meals and had common areas where people got together/hung out and watched tv. I also suspect that there are regulations now in the US that prevent the boarding house.
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Old 03-16-2013, 04:14 PM
Status: "Fall is almost over!" (set 15 days ago)
Location: Foot of the Rockies
69,637 posts, read 59,643,119 times
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Originally Posted by nikking View Post
How many of today's women could handle all that as well as she did?
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Old 03-16-2013, 08:20 PM
Location: Planet Earth
3,335 posts, read 3,641,561 times
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Originally Posted by chirack View Post
Ah why? If they are in an area with bad transit(exburbs often) then using them as boarding homes does not make much sense. The ones that can not provide a value will simply be torn down like any other housing. There will always be demand for big housing, a few large families or people looking for more room.
Well, a higher density could spur demand for more transit. The problem is that the street grid might not be transit-friendly, but there might be ways of making it work.
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Old 03-16-2013, 08:26 PM
Location: Western Massachusetts
27,930 posts, read 14,184,664 times
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Originally Posted by Komeht View Post
The boarding house may be an answer to the problem of McMansions - when no one wants them anymore and the people who live in them no longer need all that space nor can afford to heat and cool it.
A roommate share situation would be much easier to work out, which is what tends to appeal to the same demographic today as boarding houses did many decades ago. Still around.


sounds like no transit, they all use cars.

Chopping them up into tenements won't really work - but allowing people to use them as boarding homes or rooming homes could benefit the neighborhoods by preventing a whole series of derelict homes and providing income for increasingly isolated seniors.
There's no way you can turn a McMansion into a tenement — the physical layout is too different.
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Old 03-16-2013, 08:28 PM
Location: Western Massachusetts
27,930 posts, read 14,184,664 times
Reputation: 8847
The other downside of a boarding house is the old lady might disprove of the young person's habit. Not a roommate situation, but a live-in landlord, so some similarities:

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Old 03-16-2013, 09:10 PM
Location: A land flowing with milk and honey...
2,132 posts, read 1,101,289 times
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Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
Boarding houses were not for travelers, or not exclusively for travelers anyway. They were more for people living on their own.
This is my understanding as well and I found some interesting thoughts on reviving them...or not

Best regards, sincerely


Northridge, Calif. Killings Prompt Bill To Regulate Boarding Houses

Barely a week after four people were found shot dead outside an unlicensed boarding house
in Northridge, a bill that would regulate such homes drew passionate responses Monday.

Northridge, Calif. Killings Prompt Bill To Regulate Boarding Houses

Is It Time to Revive Boarding Houses?

Over time, single room occupancy hotels became the housing of last resort for the poorest and
most troubled segment of an urban population and have all but disappeared.

Over the past several months there has been a surge of stories about micro-apartments, a new
form of relatively inexpensive housing for single people in cities where housing costs are sky
high. Last year, San Francisco approved legislation that allows for “micro-unit” apartments that
can have as little as 150 square feet of living space.

Is It Time to Revive Boarding Houses?

HOW TO RUN A BOARDING HOUSE - Through most of American history, when you traveled or
moved to a new town or were simply poor and alone, your only choice was a boarding house.
"Boarding" was not a surfing term in those days. It had to do with food being spread out on a
board -- a table -- for you to choose from. "Bed and board" referred to a place to eat and sleep.
The concept was that you were staying in somebody's private home, eating at their table, in
exchange for which you paid them a small amount of money -- usually barely enough to make
ends meet, and even then it was hard for most boarders to pay it.

how to run a boarding house, room and board business, tips
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Old 03-16-2013, 09:11 PM
Location: Earth. For now.
1,116 posts, read 1,046,376 times
Reputation: 882
In Minneapolis/St.Paul, if you qualify for the program, you can be set up in a boarding house at the expense of the county. The owners of the houses are paid $869 per month for each resident to cover room and board, and I know of one boarding house that has 200 residents spread among 4 former apartment buildings.

This program is used for people who have had trouble with homelessness, drugs, mental illness or past criminal records and is called Group Residential Housing (GRH). Residents have to adhere to rules of conduct. Contrary to a lot of preconceived notions, these places are quite safe and clean and have 24-hour management and security. There are dozens of these houses in the Twin Cities and nearly all are segregated by sex, though some are mixed. Some are located in converted mansions, some are new buildings and some are in older apartment buildings.
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