These are reasons to start a Cooperative as well as reasons to think twice about it. 
Reasons Why You Might Want to Start a Co-op
- Cooperatives exist to meet their members’ needs. Their focus is on service to members, not on bringing a return to investors.
- Cooperative members are not penalized for working together in a cooperative business under US Tax Code; therefore many cooperatives enjoy tax advantages.
- Cooperatives are owned and controlled by their members. They help keep resources in the members’ community and are guided by members’ values.
- Decisions made democratically by the membership provide a strong direction that is supported across the organization.
- Profits are returned to members so members benefit from the business they do with the cooperative.
- Cooperatives contribute to the economic stability of their communities.
- Distribute the benefits of real ownership based on time and use, not just the amount of money someone can invest.
Reasons Why You Might Want to Think Twice Before Starting a Coop
- Sometimes cooperatives have difficulty gaining access to the capital they need without being able to bring on investors who have a seat on the board.
- Cooperatives need to invest time and money in supporting their democratic process – educating members about key issues, holding meetings, and responding to member concerns. This can be expensive and time consuming.
- Sometimes there are legal limits to the scope of operations or membership for a cooperative.
- Cooperatives are only as good as their members ask them to be. When members stop investing time and energy, cooperatives can reduce the benefits they provide to their members.
- ↑ "How to Start a Co-op" packet. http://www.cdi.coop/CDIcompletestart-uppkt2010.pdf