In this blog post, we are going to showcase how PTX Electric specializes in the co-op housing industry and what we can do to help with not only their electrical needs but how our expertise can also help maintain and run a co-op more efficiently.

How PTX Electric Can Help Co-ops?

By their nature co-ops are not different electrically than any other type of strata council but the way you have to approach them is very different. Generally, you have to look at the whole building and take into account all the shareholders. This means whatever electrical company you hire needs to have strong communication skills – not something that a lot of electrical companies are known for!

Because the PTX team is so versatile, we can come in and fix almost any solution. This is important for co-ops especially if they haven’t had an electrical inspection in a long time.

We provide a full unit maintenance report for the board and all the members. This often goes further than just electrical inspection. We want to help you maintain your building overall, so we even look at roofing gutters, garages, windows and fences.

Most of the home’s electrical systems are hidden behind walls and ceiling and so not immediately apparent. As this is the case, oftentimes electrical gets put off for longer than is considered advisable.

Some of the things we look for in a co-op inspection:

  • Are the meter sockets damaged or beginning to detach from the house?
  • Are the service cable wires damaged or deteriorating?
  • Is the main electrical panel outdated or damaged in any way? Are the circuits overloaded?
  • Is there evidence of breakers overloading? Are they mismatched or too large?
  • Are GFCI outlets installed in the correct locations? Are they functioning properly?
  • Does the house contain exposed wires or any obvious hazards, such as overloaded power strips or improperly used extension cords?
  • Is there a surge protector on the home’s main panel? Do individual appliances have surge protectors?
  • Is there a grounding system and is it installed correctly and to code?
  • Are smoke and carbon monoxide detectors present in the correct locations around the house? Are they outdated? Do they work correctly?

After the inspection is done, we will give you a written report along with photos that provide you with the status of all elements examined during the inspection. We then make a determination based on what we see for the right course of action. If repairs are needed, we will give you a couple of options of how to proceed. We give an honest opinion of what can wait and what needs to be fixed immediately. Safety is our number one priority, and so we will alert you to any threats of fire, water damage or other potentially hazardous issues.

We can work within any budget and capital plan and can get creative about our budgeting process so it works for you. At PTX Electric, we understand that a co-op rules and policies aren’t necessarily the same as a stratified residence and so can adjust accordingly.

We will show your current electrical spending and how you can save money with new energy-efficent light bulbs or new wiring. Often, we are able to save co-ops money in ways that the co-op board wouldn’t know or think about.

What Is A Co-Op?

Co-op housing is a legal entity that owns a piece of real estate property, usually a residential building. Co-ops are a distinctive form of homeownership that is different from the normal residential arrangements that you see and single-family detached housing or condos because while in a regular stratified building, each resident owns their own individual unit. This is not the case for co-ops. Instead of owning a piece of property outright, co-ops are membership-based with each member granted shares of the legal entity of the co-op. Each shareholder is then granted the right to occupy a unit.

Co-op Benefits

There are quite a few benefits to co-operative housing.  In many cases, co-ops offer a less expensive housing option. For example, they are usually cheaper per square foot than condos in the same area, with the added benefit of lower purchasing costs.

In addition, a future sale of a unit can result in significant financial gains, even though owners aren’t building equity. This is especially true for a long-term investment in a high-cost housing market like Vancouver.

Lastly, Co-ops also often provide more social “connectivity” than large condo buildings, which can be helpful in big cities, where it’s harder to get to know your neighbours or form any sort of community.

Co-op Drawbacks

Likewise, while getting to know your neighbours can be beneficial, it can be hard to enter into a financial arrangement with people you hardly know which is what happens in co-ops. This can lead to fighting and bitter feelings with your neighbours.

Co-ops are run by a board and if they approve a capital project or new amenities, you may receive a substantial bill for your portion of the cost.


PTX Electric works with a lot of the large co-op companies in the Lower Mainland because we are the go-to electrical co-op specialists. We show co-ops how they can fix their wiring so their shareholders and tenants are happier which will not only increase the value of the co-op but will save them money in the electrical bill in the long run. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to give PTX electric a call.