September 7, 2021

Our Impact | New Resource | Paths for Housing Co-operatives

Co-op housing is an essential piece of the housing continuum in Alberta and Canada, however, as government subsidies continue to dwindle and current co-op assets face increasing maintenance costs, the inventory of units is threatened. This project assesses the financial needs of current co-ops, explores research solutions, and shares recommendations for new co-op housing models.

The Sustainable Housing Initiative, a division of the Rural Development Network, partnered with the Alberta Community and Cooperative Association and the Northern Alberta Cooperative Housing Association to create new resources to support the growth of co-operative housing in northern Alberta.

Through a literature review, stakeholder engagement, and financial analysis, five key themes emerged contributing to the overall success of a housing co-op:

  • Strong capacity
  • Focus on inclusion
  • Strong sense of community
  • Supportive community design
  • Effective planning and processes for long term sustainability

Each of these themes includes corresponding strategies to accomplish them and accounts for the different types of housing co-ops.

“By sustaining, improving and growing the housing co-op space in Canada we can more readily solve the many issues we face in the Canadian Housing Industry – including those regarding affordability, accessibility, equity, availability, and sustainability.” – Paths for Housing Co-ops Research Report

Explore the Research Report, Guidebook, and Development Calculator Tool here. Combined, these resources aim to help new and existing housing co-ops develop and operate successfully.

The Foundation funded this project in our 2020 grant round. We are proud to invest in this impactful work and resources for Albertans – real estate professionals in the industry and real estate consumers – to support the creation of sustainable, efficient, and resilient housing co-ops in Alberta.

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