Co-op housing is the only form of social housing where residents govern themselves. The idea that people who live in housing would make key decisions is very different from other models.

 

Co-ops are different in the way the residents share the responsibility and control of their homes. 

COOPERATIVE LIVING..
Provides service of the best kind to their members at an affordable price
Gives all members equal voting rights
Uses any money saved by the members by performing their own maintenance and upkeep to top up the replacement reserves and keep housing charges low
Encourages occupancy of those with special needs
They are integrated into social organization of the co-op
Provides an environment where members give and receive support beyond their shelter needs and treat each other with respect and tolerance

 

CO-OPS ARE OPEN TO ANYONE READY TO TAKE ON THE RESPONSIBILITY OF BEING A MEMBER
Members share responsibility and control of their homes. People who live in a co-op aren’t just residents or tenants, they’re members and that's important. The co-op belongs to it’s members and they take pride in keeping it clean, attractive and in good repair. Members realize that keeping the buildings in good shape means there are fewer expenses to affect the monthly rent. And when it’s time to raise the rent, everyone gets a vote.  Nobody is in a position to make a profit so this means that a housing co-op will remain an affordable place to live for many years. The co-op sets aside reserves for the future, and charges the members only what it needs to operate soundly. Since everyone helps to run the co-op, there’s a better chance of getting to know all the neighbors. Various projects and jobs are divided up among the members who have volunteered for specific tasks.  Everyone in a housing co-op has a vote and gets to use it often. From electing a Board of Directors to buying new windows, all important decisions are made by the members. Having input into decisions that affect your life results in a very satisfying sense of control. Co-ops help to improve the quality of life for others.
THE 7 CO OP PRINCIPLES
Although co-operatives can operate in many different sectors and either as a for-profit or not-for-profit enterprise, there is one thing that every co-op has in common. Co-ops around the world are organized according to the seven international principles of co-operation.

1. Voluntary and open membership
2. Democratic member control
3. Member economic participation
4. Autonomy and independence
5. Education, training and information
6. Co-operation among co-operatives
7. Concern for community