Colorado ranks among lowest when it comes to renters rights
(Mar. 11) – The House gave preliminary approval to Rep. Dominique Jackson and Rep. Rochelle Galindo’s bill to allow sufficient time for tenants to remedy a lease violation before getting evicted.
“This bill will give hardworking people additional time to find the resources they need to stay in their homes, and that helps the renter as well as the landlord and could help prevent homelessness,” said Rep. Jackson, D-Aurora. “Rental assistance is available, but people need more time to get that assistance. Homelessness is already a problem. Let’s help keep people housed.”
Current state law does not allow sufficient time for tenants to remedy a late rental payment or minor lease violation. Right now, Coloradans can have an eviction filed against them within three days of missing a payment. Three days is not enough time to find a new place to stay, to move out, or to find pro-bono legal resources to help postpone an eviction and leads to instability and homelessness or even job loss. Forced moves or evictions have a domino effect in communities across Colorado leading to homelessness, poverty and job loss. Housing instability benefits no one and often destabilizes families, children’s education and local communities.
“Hardworking families and individuals struggling to get ahead are being evicted from their homes for owing as little as $40. This bill ensures a tenant has sufficient time to make their rent payment,” said Rep. Galindo, D-Greeley. “This bill will help prevent the downward spiral into poverty that is so often associated with an eviction.”
Under HB19-1118, tenants will now receive 10 days to pay their rent or address a minor lease issue before an eviction is filed against them, up from three days.
House Republicans offered many amendments to gut the bill and perpetuate the cycle of evictions that is plaguing so many Coloradans and their families. They frequently sided with those landlords that look to make a profit rather than ethically housing people.
Having an eviction record can make it close to impossible for an individual or family to secure housing in the future. Twenty-eight states give more notice before eviction than Colorado in the case of unpaid rent and 36 states provide more notice in the case of other lease violations.
The bill passed by a voice vote. It still requires a final vote in the House before going to the Senate.