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Austin Student Co-ops
Other Austin Co-ops,

All Austin Cooperative Nursery School
     2301 Hancock Dr. 454-5315

Black Star Co-op (restaurant & pub)
   7020 Easy Wind Dr. 512-452-BEER

KO.OP Radio 91.7 FM -- 304 E. 5th 472-1369
   Also see the Save KOOP website

Neighborhood Co-op (preschool) 78757

REI (Recreational Equipment Inc.) (sporting goods)
    9901 N. Capital of Tx Hwy. 343-5550

South Austin Children's Cooperative
     Nursery & school for children 18 mos. - 5 yrs.

University Co-Op (college bookstore)
   2244 Guadalupe 476-7211

Wheatsville Food Co-op (natural foods store)
   3101 Guadalupe 512-478-COOP

Other Austin Co-ops,

Austin Art Co-op (women artists)

Ecology Action (recycling center)  9th St. @ IH-35

New Music Co-op (performance)

Monkeywrench Books (radical bookstore)

Yard to Market (farming)

National Co-op Organizations
NASCO -- North American Students of Cooperation. Provides operational assistance to student housing co-ops, helps new co-ops get started, and holds an annual conference to teach leadership skills and provide information.

National Co-op Bank. Provides banking services and loans to cooperative businesses and housing co-ops.

Co-op America. Provides the economic strategies, organizing power and practical tools for businesses and individuals to address today's social and environmental problems.

More cooperatives can be found at

The umbrella group for Austin co-ops is:
Austin Cooperative Business Association

Last Update: January 2019

What is a co-op?

     A co-op is a business owned by its customers or its workers.  Co-ops started in the 1840's in England as a way for people to save money: members pooled their money and bought food in quantity which got them a volume discount.  And the fact that they didn't need to make a profit also helped to keep costs low.  Besides saving money, co-ops are attractive to people who like the idea of a business being owned and managed by its members.

      During the Depression college students started housing co-ops to live in while going to school.  These were large houses of twenty or so rooms.  The students saved money by sharing the cooking and cleaning rather than paying maids and cooks.  They also enjoyed the built-in community, and the idea of all working together. (more about co-ops...)

       Here's help for how to finance a new co-op.

Help for student housing co-ops

Below are a bunch of articles, reports, and analyses of issues I wrote for the ICC student housing co-ops in Austin, Texas.  I tried to include enough background information and to make them general enough that they'll be useful as co-opers in other parts of the country and the world.

My hope is that this information can help co-op leaders keep their co-ops affordable and grow their co-ops to serve more members. Enjoy!

Room Rates




Orienting new members

Some co-ops give a quiz to new members during Orientation to make sure they really learned something, and provide an online version for those who missed live Orientation.




House Stuff

  • Sample house Manuals:
    House of Commons: PDF  MS Word
    Royal: PDF  MS Word
  • Sample "House Policies" sheet for prospective members MS Word



How to Buy a House
How to
Buy a House

Step-by-step guide for first-time homebuyers.

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Saving Electricity

How to Save Electricity

Everything you wanna know. Shows you exactly how much you can save.

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