Applying for Full Membership

Hello @reef-associate,

(Long post again, the TL;DR is at the end)

It’s been since November that you have joined The Reef, and since mid-December that you took the step to become Associate Members, and so according to our membership process it’s now time to invite you to apply for Full Membership.

Taking the decision …

Becoming a Full Member of The Reef is not a decision to be taken lightly. First of all because in essence it’s about investing your life-time savings into a real estate project, and second because we’re a self-managed group, which means that you’ll become a partner who will be expected to contribute their fair share.

We know from experience that this is an important life decision that is preferably only taken with enthusiasm and confidence. In case you’d like to talk about it, please don’t hesitate to contact your buddy and/or any Full Member you feel comfortable with.

Other things you could read (if not done yet) that could help you to take your decision include the following:

Full Members’ rights

As we discussed in the context of the last plenary, the importance of the decisions we are going to be taking in the near future is increasing dramatically. For this reason, when we got together with the Full Members, we realised that it is important to us that only those who are committed to the project by getting financially involved take part in the decision-making (see my post ahead of the plenary of 09/03).

As a result, the full members proposed to make the following changes as to how we would like to move forward (see Chris’ post ahead of the plenary of 09/03):

  • Requesting Full Membership is only possible if one has received the green light from the confesseur. In practical terms this means the following: A = green light, B and C = go the Immotheker and/or Fonds de Logement, and brief back to the confesseur so you can get the green light.

  • Starting from 03/04, participating in level 3 and 4 decisions will only be possible for Full Members (more info below).

This comes on top of other additional rights for Full Members that we already decided on:

  • Possibility to be a member of the Board

  • Possibility to vote on whether we’ll purchase a certain site, yes or no

  • Priority in choosing your unit or lot (i.e. the sooner you become a Full Member, the higher up in the list you’ll be)

Full Members’ responsibilities

Here again we’re a bit in a fuzzy situation because we are about to move forward to purchase the site, but we are not a 100% there yet.

When taking the decision, I would recommend you do it based on the following assumptions:

  • The Full Membership fee arrangement will be reverted back to normal: the 2000 you will be asked to pay will thus be a donation and not a 1500 euro loan plus a 500 euro donation. As used to be the case before, you will be able to recover your 2000 euro once a new Full Member has been accepted.

  • We may decide that by the end of April we would like to collect 150.000 euro, so that we can pay the option to purchase the site without blinking. We will further discuss the details, but what matters is that the contribution you will be asked to pay (estimated to be between 7.000 and 20.000 euro) will be administered as a loan (so you can get it back immediately if you leave before we purchase the site).

Other than that, I think it would also be good to give some thought to the commitment you are taking on. We’ll talk about that a bit more on the Saturday of the Reeflings weekend.


As you may have noticed, the date for the change in decision rights has been slightly moved (to 03/04 instead of 23/03). This way, the new arrangement will only enter into force after the Reeflings weekend.

The reason for this is that, upon some reflection, we figured that there is no immediate need to change the decision-making arrangement, and also because we believe that the Reeflings weekend will be a good opportunity to make a better informed decision about full membership.

Therefore the new deadline by when we would be incredibly grateful to receive your application is Monday 27/03 COB. The last possible moment to send in your application (according to our membership process) will be 15 June.


To apply for full membership, please send an email to The Reef’s mailbox, and save your email on Nextcloud (ASBL > Members Registry > Membership application or here).

Decisions on full membership applications are taken by consensus by the Full Members. After we have received your application, it may therefore take up to two weeks before we’ll be able to communicate the outcome.


  • If you sense a “hell yes!”, we would be incredibly grateful to receive your full membership application (email to The Reef’s mailbox – please save it here) by Monday 27/03 COB.

  • If you need more time to take the decision, that is fine. Please don’t hesitate to talk to your buddy and/or another Full Member, and otherwise just continue to participate in The Reef as before (just without participating in consent rounds starting from 03/04). The ultimate deadline for applying is 15/06.


Hi @Lee. Thanks for this thorough post. I still have a follow up question regarding the loan for the option. You explained yesterday that this is what Brutopia did. In their case, was the loan made to the société civil or also an ASBL? Where do you plan to have further discussion on this ahead of a decision? Is it team legal/finance and then plenary?

Hi Vicky,

The loan will be to the asbl, just like it was done in Brutopia. You’ll find an example of the loan convention in the proposal on how to share the money for the option that we discussed last Sunday.

Like everything else in The Reef the process that we follow is that we decide on it in the plenary, based on a proposal from a Team, which in this case will be Team Finance. The planning and details are on the agenda of the next Coordination Group meeting, which is planned for 05/04.

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Hello @reef-associate,
(ping @reef-full)

As you have now learned by now, this is the first time that we are going through an onboarding process like this, which sadly means that we need to figure out certain things as we go. I regret that this sometimes comes at the cost of the clarity and predictability that we value so much, and I promise we’ll make it a point to learn from this experience as much as possible.

Then to the current situation. Since I posted the first message on top, two things have happened:

  • Several Associate Members have expressed a wish for feedback and/or a desire to be heard.
  • We had a Full Members meeting yesterday to talk about potential membership applications.

One of the key conclusions that we reached yesterday was that we should probably take our time for this membership process, and so we would like to propose the following:

  • We arrange bilateral meetings with all the Associate Members, i.e. every Associate Member will be invited to go for a coffee by one or two Full Members. We use this meeting to answer any possible questions, and also for mutual feedback.

  • We ask you to hold on to your membership request until after the bilateral.

  • We strive to get full clarity about membership by the plenary meeting of 17/04, which is when we hope to be ready to conclude on the “checklist to purchase a site”.

Thanks in advance for your understanding!


Just wanting to give an update on our household:
As you all know, @JolanWuyts wasn’t able to attend the Reefling weekend because he had a previously set commitment in Lisbon. He’s back in Belgium now, but with both our work schedules we haven’t yet had a chance to have a proper conversation about the weekend, all the talks and things that happened. We’ve set aside some time this week to bring him up-to-date on everything and have a thorough talk about how we’re both feeling about applying for full membership. In the meantime we’re taking steps to get our financial ‘green light’, as last time we got a B+ out of our meeting with the confesseurs. To be continued :slight_smile:


Hi Lie and Vicky, the example of the loan convention you mentioned - is it this one? I understand from the document that they did the loan once they had found the site and not before and I thought the latter was the case after last week’s plenary…so now I am confused. :thinking:

Hi Claudia,

Yes, that the loan convention that we’ll use as the basis indeed.

The decision about whether to collect the money well in advance or just ahead of the purchase will be taken at a plenary meeting.

Thanks for your quick reaction. I had understood from discussions at the last plenary meeting that the idea of collecting the money “well in advance” came from Brutopia, did I misunderstand that?

No, it’s the other way around.

In Brutopia they collected the money just ahead of the purchase. In The Reef we are considering to collect the money well in advance, because some of us feel insecure in the presence of candidate Full Members who seem to be waiting things out until the very last moment.

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