MEMBER
RESOURCES

Governing and managing a thriving housing co-op can be challenging and complicated. We are here to help.

Don’t forget the many resources under our education program. Access to  many of these requires FREE registration. If you do no already have an account,  register here.

Meeting Tools | Model Rules 2.0 | Cooperative Association Act | Guide to the Co-op Act | Personal Information Protection | Policies, Samples and Templates | Ask the Lawyers | Starting a Housing Co-op | 2020 Guides | Virtual Meetings | Other Resources
Useful resources for housing co-ops.
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Meeting Tools

We offer tools such as sample agendas, minute taking templates as well as an overview section that covers general information about meeting notice, quorum, ordinary and special resolutions etc.

Meetings are the foundation of your housing co-op’s democratic governance structure, which means that everyone should have an equal opportunity to productively take part. This, along with legal requirements set out in the Cooperative Association Act and your Rules, means that you will want to pay careful attention to how your meetings are organised and run.

Find the tools here


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Model Rules 2.0

Our Model Rules are written with the best legal advice and offer a bold new standard in housing co-op governance.

These Rules are full of fresh ideas and best practices to address the current day needs of your business and community. With a simple step-by-step process and complete set of online tools and resources, you can make the process of updating your Rules and Occupancy Agreement as easy as it can be!

The Rules are fully compliant with the Cooperative Association Act and other acts of legislation.

Find out more here.


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Cooperative Association Act

Commonly known as the Co-op Act, it officially became law in 2001.

The official name of the Co-op Act is Cooperative Association Act, SBC 1999 – Chapter 28. SBC 1999 means that the Act is part of the Statutes of British Columbia (SBC) and was originally was passed in 1999. The latest consolidated version was published January, 2016. You can review the Act’s legislative history,  including any changes not in force in the Tables of Legislative Changes.

You can find the Act and Regulation on the BC Government web site for Revised Statutes and Consolidated Regulations:

What you see on the web site is not an official version of the Act. It is best to buy your own, true copy. Co-ops and members can buy the Cooperative Association Act (the Co-op Act) and the Cooperative Association Regulation (the Regulation) from:

Crown Publications
536 Superior Street, Victoria V8V 1T7
Telephone: 250-387-6409
Toll free: 800-663-6105
crownpub.bc.ca

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Personal Information Protection

Your housing co-op must comply with the provincial Personal Information Protection Act (PIPA) which includes having a PIPA policy and a designated PIP Officer.

We are pleased to provide a dozen regularly-updated PIPA tools to help you ensure your housing co-op is in compliance. These include a PIPA checklist, a sample PIPA policy, PIP Officer job description, a new member application form and a complaints form.

Read more


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Policies, Samples and Templates

With 55 individual templates and guidance documents within the areas of housing co-op board and governance, finance, maintenance, membership and community there is no need for you to reinvent the wheel.

Sample policies, procedures, job descriptions (for various committees and roles) and forms are available as templates to be adapted for use at your co-op. Guidance documents complete the full set of support materials. These resources are regularly reviewed and vetted to ensure current best practices.

For CHF BC members only. You will need to be logged in to review these resources. If you don’t already have an account, get one here.

Find out more here.


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Ask the Lawyers

On May 6, 2020, CHF BC members took part in this Town Hall with co-op lawyers Geoffrey Dabbs and Grant Haddock. The lawyers tackled a range of questions on challenges facing housing co-ops during the time of the COVID pandemic and best practices for co-ops at anytime.

Please note: this information is provided for general interest and should not be considered legal advice.

Questions

There were 39 questions overall.  We grouped them into the following categories:

  • Overview 5:20
  • Governance (Meetings) questions 1 to 7 8:17
  • Governance (Rules and Policies) questions 8 to 19 28:45
  • Membership Terminations questions 20 to 26 1:02:49
  • Financial questions 27 to 30 1:17:06
  • Operations and Maintenance questions 31 to 37 1:26:43
  • Other Questions questions 38 and 39 1:43:59

Please note: other questions participants asked during the webinar were answered throughout.

Poll Results

Throughout the town hall, we asked questions via poll of the participants and you can see the poll results at these points in the video:

  1. Who do Canadians trust most? 5:09
  2. A consent resolution is valid when? 20:58
  3. What of the following is not allowed at a members’ meeting? 28:32
  4. Members can ignore physical distancing advice (when)? 46:58
  5. A co-op cannot terminate someone’s membership for? 1:02:29

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Starting a Housing Co-op

There are two main kinds of housing co-ops in BC: equity co-ops and non-profit housing co-ops. Interested in starting one?

We often get questions about how to go about starting a co-op. It’s easy to set up an organization; it’s a lot harder to create actual housing. The vast majority of co-ops in BC are non-profit co-ops, and with few exceptions were developed as partnerships between senior levels of government (through funding programs) and grassroots organizations. The funding programs that ran from the mid-1970s to early-1990s are over, so developing co-op housing is a serious challenge without resources (land, money) of your own.

 

Learn more...


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Virtual Meetings

We offer a range of fee-based victual meeting services.

Looking for more flexible options for holding your co-op meetings? Need support or tools to have an effective online meeting? We can help with virtual board meetings, general meetings, town halls, and more.

We also have tips and recommendations about best practices and how to prepare for various kinds of meetings.


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Other Resources

Co-op Services is the newest team at CHF BC. We work with other staff members to support member inquiries, develop resources for member co-ops and assist with new co-ops.

We will be developing more materials and resources to complement our education program offerings (including workshops and member-only resources).