As a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. we believe housing is a human right. We work together to create, maintain, and expand affordable housing in Bloomington, Indiana without a profit motive by: 

  • Creating institutional structures that allow community-based ownership and administration of large assets in order to benefit from economy of scale and prevent profiteering. 

  • Establishing governance structures and shared values that help us end exploitation of people in need of housing.

  • Building administrative and decision-making structures that encourage collective democratic decision-making

  • Recognizing the ways in which our members and affiliates are already part of the communities around us as workers, students, friends, and family

  • Integrating ourselves and our work into local communities and institutions

  • Recruiting members who are capable of providing help and support to other members

  • Proactively addressing member's material and emotional needs interpersonally and institutionally

  • Responding to members experiencing distress with compassion and care for both the member and the community

  • Rejecting the imbalanced power dynamics created by charity

  • Expecting members to contribute to our common cause to the extent that they are able

  • Asking members to learn and grow in their work toward the fulfillment of all aspects of this mission statement, and supporting one another’s growth to this end

As part of the BLC mission and commitment to affordable housing, 75% our members meet national, state, and local low-income standards.



BCL was founded in 2007 by students from Indiana University with the guidance of experienced cooperatives in Ann Arbor, MI, Madison, WI, Athens, OH, and Berkeley, CA. Our range of members has expanded to include community members and families from Bloomington and surrounding areas.


BCL's first owned property was Middle Earth located at 404 West Kirkwood Ave in Bloomington, Indiana. Middle Earth-, named in homage to its predecessor Middle Way House, was acquired through loans from Shared Capital, IU Credit Union, and Middle Way House itself.

We have held leases for Goodlawn and Which House, both located just south of the Indiana University campus off Atwater Ave. In late 2020, we purchased our second property through grants, community-based loans, and a traditional mortgage.


Construction and renovation of the property located at 921 West 9th St. began in early 2021, and the completed property will be ready for members by October 1, 2021.