If you’re living in Denver and not a homeowner, then you’re all too familiar with the skyrocketed rental costs. As the housing market remains partial to sellers, the gap between low-income residents and homeownership broadens. For many residents, rent has more than doubled in the last decade, though wages have not increased by the same margin. As a solution to find affordable rent, earlier this month, Senate Bill 19-225 was introduced to legislation. The U.S. Census Bureau reports that there are 1.8 million renters in Colorado. According to the City of Denver, the average rent for a two-bedroom apartment is close to $1,500. One of the supporters of this new bill is Democratic Senator Julie Gonzales.
There are those who are against this bill passing. Folks like Teo Nicolais, vice-president of Apartment Association of Metro Denver is a landlord in Lakewood and Westminster. He self-describes his business as ‘mom and pop.’ Further, his opposition to the bill stems from his fear that a cap would prohibit landlords like him from being able to pay for their properties. Which would result in them having to sell their property and take it out of the rental market altogether.
Rent Control grew throughout the 1970’s and 1980’s, but have since waned in popularity in large part to the overall consensus that they did not serve their intended function. With rent control in place, builders build fewer apartments, which only drives up the cost of rent in the non-rent controlled apartments causing an even bigger problem on affordable housing.