What is a Housing Cooperative?
Housing coops offer good quality, affordable housing operated on a non-profit basis. Members of coops have security of tenure and a say in how their coops are run. Any surpluses are re-invested in the housing to maintain it in good condition for future generations of members.
Members are involved in many aspects of managing the building, and maintaining the community. Housing coops were created to be cooperative, inclusive, community-based organizations, which provide safe, affordable housing to their members
Coops make decisions democratically (one member, one vote), and so our members are actively engaged in the governance of our cooperative. This offers many educational and social opportunities to our members. Our Coop provides a friendly place to live for established Ottawa residents and newcomers alike.
The Coop is a member of CHASEO (Cooperative Housing Association of Eastern Ontario) and CHFC (Co-operative Housing Federation of Canada). CHASEO also provides an explanation of cooperative housing. The Coop follows these international cooperative principles:
- Open and Voluntary Membership
- Member’s Economic Participation
- Autonomy and Independence
- Cooperation Among Cooperatives
- Democratic Control by Members
- Committment to Service
- Education, Training and Information
- Concern for Community and Future Generations
Members can also get good deals on insurance (apartment contents and auto) through MemberGuard with the Co-operators.
In Sandy Hill alone there are four housing cooperatives, all of which belong to the CHFC:
- Coop Voisins : 613-565-0284
- Conservation Coop : 613-567-7281
- Sandy Hill Coop : 613-234-4554
- St. Georges Coop : 613-565-0105
“We chose cooperative housing after renting from landlords whose main interest was their own profit, not maintaining a good place to live. Especially in times of low vacancy, landlords can charge rents as high as they wish, and are less motivated to provide repairs or respond to complaints.
In contrast, coops are non-profit, which means repairs are handled promptly, housing charges are reasonable, and we as members make important decisions together about how the coop is run. I love knowing and having fun with my neighbours, and feeling that I am part of a community, not just a building.”
D., member since 2003