The fees were what attracted attention -- $1 a week for a bed, $1 a week for food, about 10 percent of the usual expenses. The founders christened it the Michigan Socialist House. But around campus it was quickly known just as "the two-dollar house." It filled immediately—26 men in a house built for a family of six.

In 1932, Michigan Socialist House was organized by the Socialist Club as a means to provide housing at "actual" cost. This was during The Great Depression, a time when students struggled to pay tuition and rent, often working long hours at low pay at the expense of valuable study time. Sher Quraishi, one of the founding members of Mich house, also led the foundation of the Wolverine Eating co-op in the same year. In 1932, room and board at Mich house was $2 a week. In 1939, house members voted to change the house's name to Michigan Co-operative House, although some members occasionally use the former name to this day.