Housing Cooperatives v. Private Market Housing
Membership v. Tenancy
Residents are members not tenants, and they are in charge of managing the day to day operations of the cooperative and electing a board of directors in the annual meetings. They each have a vote, and they can use this to impact decision making and what gets prioritized. This said, there is no landlord and members don’t have to worry about excessive rent increases as housing charge increases will always reflect true cost vs. profit margin and members get a chance to review budget recommendations advised by the board of directors.
Membership Agreements v. Residential Leases
Cooperatives provide security of tenure, meaning that members can stay there for as long as they want as long as they don’t violate their contractual responsibilities. This said, members form deep roots in the communities they live in and they are also supported by a larger group of federations where they can turn for information and suggestions.
Membership Fees v. Rents
In a private residential complex, rent may legally increase yearly, especially (as it is the case in Ontario) if it is a new residential building constructed after X year where rent increases don’t have to correspond to inflation. Likewise, the landlord has ultimate authority in regards to how to manage the property, what rules to implement and how to use the money obtained from rent.
Board of Directors v. Landlords
In Ontario specifically a landlord from a private residential complex may apply to terminate a tenancy if the residential unit is needed for the use of the landlord itself, the landlord’s spouse, a child or parent of the landlord or the landlord’s spouse, or a person who provides essential care services to the landlord’s family. Likewise a landlord may also apply to terminate a tenancy on the basis that the landlord: (1) will demolish the rental unit; (2) needs vacant possession to do extensive repairs or renovations; or (3) intends to convert the rental unit to non-residential use.