How often do live-work spaces become available?

It’s difficult to predict, but in general, turnover of live-work spaces is about 1-2 per year.

Am I eligible to live at the Artist Building at 300 Summer Street?

Per our bylaws, a qualified applicant to the Artist Building must:

  1. be a practicing visual artist;

  2. have a recent body of work (less than three years old), documented by either a personal and/or gallery website or other online media sites;

  3. have a demonstrated need for live-work studio space (due perhaps to a desire to own rather than rent, instability of present occupancy, or loss of a studio through displacement); and

  4. satisfy at least one of the following three criteria:

  • have an education or background primarily in visual arts;

  • have a record of exhibitions or gallery affiliation;

  • demonstrate with letters of recommendation from recognized art professionals that the applicant is a serious working artist

How do I pre-apply to be notified when a live-work space becomes available?

To pre-apply, you need to complete a questionnaire. On the questionnaire, you will be asked to include your art website to at least 10 images of your artwork from the last 3 years with dates, sizes, and medium.  In addition, your website must have your resume and artist statement. Learn more.

300 Summer Street is a limited equity cooperative. What does that mean?

  • The “cooperative” part of this title means that each member of the cooperative owns one share of stock in the cooperative, entitling the member to lease his or her live-work space from the cooperative according to a residency agreement and proprietary lease. Note: Mortgage interest and real estate taxes are deductible, just like owning real estate.

  • The “limited equity” part of the title means that when a member sells a share (that entitles the new member to a proprietary lease for a live-work space), he or she does so according to a formula that establishes a selling price meant to both profit the seller and help keep the live/work space at lower than market rate over time.

Learn more about limited equity vs. market rate cooperatives

How is the selling price of a share of stock (proprietary lease) for a live-work space calculated?

The Maximum Transfer Value (money paid to Seller) of a live-work space is calculated according to the Maximum Transfer Value (MTV) as defined in the building by-laws and devised to preserve the Artist Building as a lower than market rate primary residence building for visual artists. There are three components involved in the MTV:

  1. The 1995 initial consideration (cash down and personal loan) adjusted for inflation and a built-in annual profit.

  2. The appraised value of the improvements in their current condition (it does not matter who made them when).

  3. Principal paid on live-work space's portion of all loans the Coop has made since 1995, no matter which shareholder owned the stock, and based on elapsed time.

The final adjusted MTV figure is the maximum price that the buyer pays to the seller with cash or with a loan called a share loan. Both buyer and seller need to have their own attorney who will write up a purchase and sale agreement with this number as the MTV price. The maximum price is not guaranteed to seller.

PLEASE NOTE: There is an additional part of the price, explained in the following section, in the form of a debt fee which the Buyer assumes from the Seller, which is the live-work space's monthly proportional obligation payment for the cooperative's blanket loan (or coop's first mortgage with National Cooperative Bank). 

What monthly charges would I pay?

  1. Debt Fee.The live-work space’s monthly portion of the cooperative blanket loan (first mortgage).

  2. Coop Fee (or Member Assessment Fee). The live-work space’s monthly portion of the cooperative’s fees as determined by the annual budget (shared utilities, cleaning and maintenance, repairs, real estate taxes, management company fees, legal fees, etc). This may increase over time.

  3. The buyer’s personal obligation to pay the monthly payments on a share loan (i.e., your personal mortgage for the Maximum Transfer Value, second mortgage to coop's blanket loan), if the buyer elects to have one. The MTV may be paid all or partly in cash. The amount paid in cash determines the size of the monthly obligation of the share loan.

  4. Members are required to purchase homeowners insurance, as per by-laws.

The new member will also be responsible for water charges billed separately by our management company and for individual electricity usage billed separately by the utility company (Eversource).

Can you give me an example of total costs?

Example: Live-Work Price and Monthly Costs as of May 31, 2019 (all figures are approximate):

Size: 1215 sq. ft.

Price: $349, 361 with no improvements (add #1 and #2 below), amount buyer will need to financially qualify for with bank and cooperative. Most live-work spaces have improvements. (The maximum for allowed improvements is $33.25 per sq. ft., so if this live/work space met the maximum, buyer would pay an additional $40,415.)

  1. Maximum Transfer Value (MTV): $176,561 (no improvements) or $216,976 (includes $40,415 maximum improvements allowed). Buyer finances the MTV amount with share loan, cash or combo to pay seller. A share loan, if needed, is a second mortgage to the National Cooperative Bank (NCB) Coop Blanket Loan and 2019 line of credit (LOC), below.

  2. Live-Work Space’s portion of Coop’s NCB Blanket Loan balance and 2019 NCB LOC: $172,800. Buyer assumes this debt by continuing seller’s monthly payments of $1261 (see #2 below).

Total Monthly Costs: $1984 fees + utilities (plus share loan monthly payments if member elects to have one):

  1. Member Assessment Fee: $723, for operational costs:

    1. Management fee

    2. Live/work space’s portion of property taxes*

    3. Common area maintenance and repairs

    4. Building insurance, legal fees, reserve fund, snow removal, etc.

      * Property taxes are tax deductible. City-qualified primary residents receive a tax credit.

  2. Debt Fee: $1261. Buyer assumes this monthly fee to pay for the live-work space’s portion of balance of NCB cooperative blanket loan (first mortgage) and 2019 LOC (line of credit).

  3. Utilities: Member is billed for heat/AC (based on sq ft) and water by management company. Electric company bills member directly.

  4. Monthly payments for share loan if buyer/member elects to have one.

What other responsibilities would I have as part of the cooperative?

In addition to financial responsibility, coop ownership includes expectations that members will:

  • participate in yearly Open Studios events,

  • serve on the cooperative’s governing board of directors from time to time,

  • volunteer for building-related committees, and

  • abide by the building by-laws, proprietary lease and residency agreement.

Members are also expected to join the Fort Point Arts Community (FPAC). Membership is available online, or you may write

Membership Coordinator
300 Summer Street M-1
Boston, MA 02210-1115

What are the building’s by-laws, proprietary lease and residency agreement?

These are the legal documents that guide the cooperative and its members. If you successfully pre-apply to become listed in our prospective applicant pool, we will furnish you with access to the governing documents upon request or at the Open Houses.

I already have a home, but I need a studio. Can I purchase a share of stock for a live-work space to work in?

No. All members of the 300 Summer Street cooperative must be primary residents of the building.


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