FAQ

Who lives in co-ops?

Members of non-profit housing co-ops come from a variety of backgrounds and have a range of incomes making all co-ops "mixed-income communities." Some members pay a full housing charge while other members with lower incomes may pay less. This is currently based on a model of providing rent geared to income or RGI, and sometimes with a rental subsidy for those with an existing agreement with government.

 

Are co-ops low-income housing?

No. Non-profit housing co-ops are mixed income communities with homes for people with a range of income levels. Generally, co-ops house people of low and moderate incomes.

 

What is a monthly housing charge?

A monthly housing charge is like rent. It’s what the members pay each month to live in the co-op. Housing charges are usually set to the amount the co-op needs to break even, after paying all its operating expenses and setting money aside for long-term capital repairs. In most co-ops members approve changes to the housing charges by passing an ordinary resolution at a general meeting.

 

What is subsidy?

Non-profit housing co-ops that still receive support from the government (federal or provincial) to help house some lower-income members sometimes call that support a subsidy or rent supplement. Housing charges for subsidized units are adjusted to fit with household income ("rent-geared-to-income" or "RGI"). At Twin Oaks you must have been a member for a minimum of 2 years to apply and the amount of subsidy received is based  on calculating with the formula of 26% of the member's income on rent (or housing charges) is the most someone should have to pay. Subsidy (or a rent supplement) makes up the difference between what the member pays and the co-op’s normal ("full" or break-even) housing charge. However, the amount of subsidy is limited and just because someone is eligible does not mean the co-op will have the subsidy to help. When co-op agreements with government end subsidies will be changing and at this time co-ops are uncertain what the arrangement will be