Tri Co-operatives

The Tri-Cooperatives (more commonly known as the Tri-Coops) are an on-campus student housing association providing affordable, cooperative housing to low-income students as well as students seeking housing that fosters educational and personal growth as instrumental components of safe and comfortable living. The community is comprised of three houses: Davis Student Co-op (DSC), Pierce, and Agrarian Effort (Ag), which regularly house 12-14 students during the academic year. The houses operate by consensus and collective action as independent entities as well as a community. 

Together, we stand by four community agreements:

1. At the Tri-Coops we are actively working to create a space where we feel physically and emotionally comfortable, respected, and safe from oppressive forces.

2. This is a learning space: We are working together to unlearn oppressive behaviors; we embrace some level of discomfort in this process but are creating a space for everyone to take initiative to learn.

3. We strive to improve our community and uphold the community agreements in the form of conversations, workshops, or community projects.

4. These community agreements are yours; re-agree upon them at the first Tri-Coop meeting of the year. Change and modify them as needed via the consensus process.

All this being said, the experience of living at the Tri-Cooperatives changes with each generation, shifts with each new quarter. Our community agreements are subject to change, but the basis of our community relies on acceptance rather than tolerance, as well as continuous communication and interest in living cooperatively. The expectations of communication and acceptance are meant to help us in unlearning our oppressive behaviors and foster community-building.

It is important to note that cooperatives are an alternative housing arrangement. We acknowledge it may be unusual or challenging at first, we expect an interest or commitment in cooperative living from applicants. this is more than simply a place to sleep. We want to stress this part. We like to see applicants who are committed to being a part of, and working with, a community. One of the systems we operate under is consensus, which entails weekly meetings with your house and monthly meetings with all three houses. In these meetings, we discuss and vote on matters that might have any effects on our housemates or community members, such as workshops, anti-oppression conflict resolution, gardening, altering community spaces, and so on.

Who lives here?

Individuals of diverse races, ethnicities, socio-economic backgrounds, gender identities, faiths, sexualities, survivor statuses, ability levels, and ages compose the population at the Coops. Although we do embrace some level of discomfort in unlearning oppressive behaviors (please see community agreements), this is not a space for prejudices, stereotypes, violence, and/or oppressive language or behavior towards any one race, ethnicity, gender identity, sex, sexuality, ability (social, mental, physical), socioeconomic class, age, size, religion, or citizenship status.

We acknowledge that not everyone has been exposed to this terminology; however, we seek to cultivate a culture of self-education in this community. Additionally, not everyone has the same connotations with these terms and we encourage people to recognize the existence of multiple experiences.  Click links for various definitions of these terms:

cultural appropriation
multiple “isms”


Rent at the Tri-Coops is currently $465. This covers:

  • all utilities (internet, water, trash, electrical, etc.)
  • garden supplies (shovels, rakes, seeds, etc.)

Board varies depending on the house, but is typically between $50 and $100. This covers:

  • basic foods (veggies, spices, flour, rice, beans, milk, and miscellaneous)
  • cleaning supplies/household necessities (brooms, rags, soap, detergent, etc.)
  • social fund (food for house dinners, party supplies)

Additionally, the houses have accumulated tools (wrenches, hammers, nails, etc.) and furniture, so incoming residents need not worry about having these things.

Information on our application process

1. Please apply here: Application

2. You will be contacted through email to schedule an interview with each individual house you apply to.

Interviews are usually done during house meetings on Mondays starting at 8pm. They are about 20 minutes and are a great time to get to know the people within each house and for the houses to get to know you! If you are not in Davis we can do phone and/or Skype interviews. In order to be prepared for interviews please fill out the application and send it in before your scheduled interview so that coopers can read the application to be prepared. Also come with questions about coop living, concerns, intrigues, and honesty 🙂

3. Come by for dinners, parties and garden work parties!

If you are in Davis and are able to come by, please do! It helps our applicant process to be able to meet you in person or hang out in a relaxed setting. We have communal dinners Sundays through Thursday at 7 and weekly community potlucks. We have occasional parties and garden work days and other community events.

Check in with each house and their Applicant Committee Representative to find out when you will hear back, it may be longer than a few days after the interview.

Additional Resources

Safe Space

Here is more information about what a safe space is.

Tri-Cooperatives Map

View a site map of the Tri-Cooperatives here.

Additional Photographs

View [more photographs] of the Tri-Cooperatives.

Pierce Handbook

A [guide] to living in one of the houses in the Tri-Coops! This includes things like Tri-Coop history, how consensus works, day-to-day happenings, and obligations that come with living at the Tri-Coops.

*Some of this material was created as early as 2005 and may not reflect the current practices of the community. However, it provides an introduction to tri co-op life that may be useful to you!*

Tri Co-ops Promo Video

Former Resident Becca Payne produced a minute-long documentary about the Tri-Coops!

“If You Lived Here You’d Be Home By Now”

A spoken word video about the Tri-Coops by former resident Tanya Azari.