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Co-operative Housing for Seniors

Province: CA

Also known as ‘co-op housing’, it is a kind of non-profit housing in which the residents or ‘members’ are actively and equally involved in making decisions and running the community they live in. Co-op settings come in many shapes and sizes and can range from apartment-style dwellings to townhouse structures. The members do not usually hold any ownership in the property (it’s usually owned by a co-operative corporation with an elected board of directors) but do pay monthly rent that may be income-based and possibly less than market rates depending on their situation and the rules of the co-operative. This option would be one geared to the independent person as opposed to someone with care needs. Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) has created an information guide on Co-operative Housing that can be found at To locate co-operatives for seniors or where there may be a large percentage of seniors, you may wish to do an internet search for ‘senior co-op housing’ in your city or region. Additionally, you can contact the Co-operative Housing Federation of Canada at 1 (800) 268-2537 or and/or visit the website for The Ontario Co-operative Association at

Excerpted from: The Comprehensive Guide to Retirement Living - 21st Edition.

Esther Goldstein, B.Sc., B.S.W., RSW


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