Our mission is to provide affordable, secure, financially and environmentally sustainable housing for people on low incomes, primarily in the South and East of Melbourne who are committed to cooperative democracy and engagement.


The services provided by SouthEast define its reality as a housing co-op. SouthEast commits to ensuring its long term capacity to continuous improvement of all services.


Members own and control their co-op and this is the essential characteristic of SouthEast. The board represents the members best through its obligation to be representative, accountable and transparent.


SouthEast is committed to the values of cooperation, voluntary membership, democratic control, autonomy & independence, co-op education and cooperation between co-ops.

RochdalePioneersMuseum3The SouthEast General Manager , Ian McLaren, has provided a brief report on his visit to housing operatives in the UK following his visit August 2014. Between 18-22 August 2014 ian visited five housing co-operatives - Edward Henry Co-operative (london), CDS Co-operative (London), New Cut Housing Co-operative (London), Redditch Co-operative Housing (Redditch) and Rochdale Boroughwide Housing (rochdale).

Housing co-operatives did not have independent directors and, indeed, it was difficult to recruit professionals to serve on boards.

All housing co-operatives struggled with member participation and regarded SEHC participation levels as admirable achievements.

All co-operatives wanted to expand through additional properties but did not know how. There were no capital grants for growth.

The CDS secondary housing co-operative owned 1000 properties that were commercially rented and the income from these properties was used to subsidise housing co-operatives.

As a secondary co-operative, CDS supported a number of primary co-operatives e.g. rent collection, repairs and maintenance and financial reporting.. A list of co-operatives serviced by CDS is attached.

The Rochdale housing co-operative has 14,500 properties and approximately 600 staff.

Councils in the UK have a legal obligation to provide housing for the homeless but there was still homelessness.

A flat rate was charged for all tenants based on the number of bedrooms. A Housing Benefit is provided, however, to all eligible tenants in council, private and community housing which is currently costing a total of 20 billion. This Housing Benefit did not cover the bedroom tax.

2011 housing by type:

Owner occupied 64%
Private rental 18%
Housing Associations 10%
Local Government 8%

In 1981 social housing (local government and housing associations) 29%

Tenants can receive up to 100% of rent from Housing Benefit depending on eligibility as well as service chjarges.

Percentage of tenants receiving Housing Benefit in 2010-2011 by type of renure:
Local authority 65%
Housing Association 60%
Private rental 25%

Social housing rent averages 60% of market rent.  There is pressure to increase this to 80% of market rents.

Developers in the UK are required to pay contributions for such things as affordable housing.

View the Housing Co-operatives UK Gallery.


Ian also visted the Co-operative College UK and there is a report on his visit at:


You can also view a video of the College visit at http://vimeo.com/105759263.

Share this post

Submit to FacebookSubmit to Google PlusSubmit to StumbleuponSubmit to TwitterSubmit to LinkedInShere with friends


SouthEast Housing Co-operative Ltd
Plaza Business Centre, the Hub, Level 3,
26 to 36 McCrae St. Dandenong 3175

Telephone: 03 9706 8005

Fax: 03 9706 8558

PO Box 7141 Dandenong Victoria 3175


coop turq message


This web site is provided for information only. Although every effort is made to ensure accuracy of information, it is presented without warranty of any kind, either express or implied. The user assumes the entire risk as to the use of the web site and the material in it.