Frequently Asked Questions

What is the difference between a co-op and a rental?

In a Co-op you are a shareholding Member of a non-profit corporation and have democratic control of your community and secured, stable housing. Co-ops are based on a set of principles which support and value community. In a rental, you do not have those benefits.

How does this co-operative differ from others that were built in previous decades?

From the 1970s to 2002, more than 240 non-profit housing co-ops began operations in BC with federal and provincial funding that paid for subsidies to low-income residents. New co-ops don’t have that funding. All co-ops retain the core co-operative principles and participate in the greater co-operative movement.

What does the Co-operative manage? How is it run?

The Co-operative is responsible for its membership, community wellbeing and governance, and its corporate and fiduciary responsibilities. It is run by a democratically elected Board of Directors, comprised of Co-op Members. Co-operatives typically create committees to take on various initiatives and address aspects of co-operative living. They also develop a set of Rules and Policies to govern their operation and provide a framework for neighbourliness.

Are assignments/subletting allowed? If yes, what are the restrictions?

Not allowed.

Is there parking?

There will be no parking spots assigned to the members. At least one stall will be designated as a loading zone (max 30 min).

What is a share purchase and how does it work?

To join a co-op, you must purchase shares in the co-op ($2000) – it’s similar to a membership fee and a damage deposit for your home. Your share purchase is due upon acceptance to the co-op. Should you withdraw your membership, your share purchase will be returned to you minus any outstanding fees or costs of repairs.

What is the process for moving out / cancelling my co-op membership? Is my Member Share returned?

This is outlined in the schedule to the Rules (Occupancy Agreement). You must notify the Co-op per the outlined procedure, two full calendar months’ written notice calculated from the last day of the month in which the notice is given. Your Member Share will be returned to you, less any outstanding fees or charges (for example, related to damage to the home). If you have not yet moved in, and wish to cancel your membership, the Share returned to you will be discounted (by ½ of the assessed housing charge) to cover the costs directly associated with the marketing of your unit.

Are pets allowed and do I need to place a pet deposit?

Yes. You are allowed up to 2 (two) pets per home. No deposit is required, but you will need to sign a pet policy acknowledgement form.

Is smoking allowed in the home or on balconies?

No. Smoking is prohibited everywhere on co-op property and in proximity to it, including in all homes, common areas, balconies, and patios. This applies to members and guests. “Smoking” includes vaping and the inhaling, exhaling, burning or ordinary use of any tobacco or other product whose use generates smoke.

Who is the building owner, and who manages the property?

Community Land Trust (CLT) owns the building and leases it to North Arm Housing Co-operative. CLT provides management function for both property and the Co-op.

What does the monthly rent include?

Members pay monthly housing charges, not rent. Most units have in-suite storage, and those that don’t there will be a storage locker on the floor provided free of charge. Members pay for their own utilities.

Which companies will I need to set up utilities with?

Members must set up an account with BC Hydro. Telus also offers 1 years of free service to North Arm’s first Members. You will be provided with the information to sign up.

What am I responsible for fixing myself? Who can I contact for emergency repairs?

Members are responsible for the proper use, care and cleaning of most elements within their homes. Damage to the unit beyond regular wear and tear is the member’s responsibility to fix. CLT deals with building repairs related to various building systems, as well as the maintenance of common areas and building exterior. Once accepted into the Co-operative, you will receive full information on emergency repairs procedures.

Do I have to get insurance on my unit and/or belongings?

Yes, content insurance is mandatory. A large discount is available to North Arm Members through The Co-operators® Insurance program for co-op members (Member Guard). You will be provided details and sign-up instructions once accepted into the co-op.

How are housing charges paid?

All the charges are paid via automatic monthly electronic pre-authorised withdrawals. Upon acceptance to the co-op you will be asked to complete a PAD form and provide a void cheque.

Are housemates or roommates allowed?

Yes, housemates are allowed. All household occupants should be listed within the application, and the co-op board should be notified of any changes to household occupants.

How many people are allowed to live in my home?

Applications will be reviewed to determine if the household’s size corresponds with the number of bedrooms available in the home following national occupancy standard.

How do housing charges increase over time?

Housing charges are adjusted for August 1st every year (starting 2023), based on comprehensive operational and asset management costs. Typically, increases to housing charges are lower than increases in the private rental market because there are no profit margins.

Will I need to show proof of income once I am a Member of the Co-operative?

Yes, there will be an annual review of income for all household members 18 and older.