About Co-ops

Fairlea Park

A housing co-operative is a democratically controlled association formed to provide housing for its members. The typical Canadian housing co-operative owns houses or apartments and rents them to members for an indefinite period of time on a non-profit basis. When a member moves out, their membership lapses.

Co-ops are different from other forms of non-profit housing. They are governed by a board of directors elected by the members, who are also the residents. Members approve budgets, appoint the auditor and set many of the co-op’s policies.

You can find more information about Canadian housing co‑operatives on the website of the Co-operative Housing Federation of Canada (CHF Canada) and housing co‑operatives around the world on the website of Co-operative Housing International.

Management Type

The trend in co-op management is toward management companies. Volunteer-only co-ops make up half the share of our clients (4%) that they did in 2007. Co-ops with their own employees are down to 30% of Agency clients, while management companies serve 52%. The rest have only a bookkeeper.