This model of cohousing could be described in various ways: - core and cluster, retrofit, neighbourhood or evolutionary.

In an ideal world a piece of land or development site is available on which a cohousing community can be built. However, in the absence of land, another way of going about creating cohousing is to purchase or rent properties in a neighbourhood over time as they become available. This is done with the intention of creating a cohousing community where members function as part of a supportive and sharing group. Dwellings might be within the same street, on the same housing estate or in nearby streets. What makes this model of cohousing different from the standard model is that the dwellings are not all on a single site, which has been purposely designed to create social contact and a sense of neighbourhood. For instance, the use of pedestrianised streets with cars kept on the outer perimeter of the site are usually features of cohousing. Members might have to work harder at creating a sense of functioning together as a community. This could be people who have moved into cohousing dwellings or those waiting to do so. As and when a suitable property was found and funding allowed part of a house or building could become a common room or even the whole of the building a common house. This would be used for meals, meetings, storage of shared equipment and machinery, such as a washing machine or lawnmower.

The development of retrofit cohousing would be dependent on suitable properties coming onto the rental or sales market, so there is less control than with the development of new build housing on a single site. Properties could be purchased either by Stroud Harbour Community Mutual Home Ownership Society or by Stroud Wayfarers Housing Community Benefit Society.