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March 14, 2023

House Advances Eviction Protections

DENVER, CO - The House today passed legislation on a preliminary vote to protect Colorado renters from arbitrary, retaliatory, and discriminatory evictions.

“Evictions are devastating for Colorado renters, leading to an increased likelihood of food instability and lower academic achievement in kids, and even causing me to drop out of high school when my family was evicted,” said Rep. Javier Mabrey, D-Denver. “Landlords should only be able to kick you out of your home for instances like lease violations or refusal to pay rent. Preventing unnecessary evictions ensures that families aren’t frivolously pushed out of their communities.”

“Evictions are disproportionately filed against low-income and people of color, creating barriers to qualifying for future housing and perpetuating the cycle of housing insecurity,” said Rep. Serena Gonzales-Gutierrez, D-Denver. “I have seen the impacts to the families I have worked with over the last 20 years who are regularly faced with housing instability. Colorado law has no just cause eviction protections, allowing landlords to evict tenants even when they pay their rent on time and follow the rules. This legislation will help keep more Colorado families from being unfairly pushed out while allowing landlords the tools they need to keep their units profitable and in good condition.”

HB23-1171 creates the Just Cause Eviction Policy in Colorado law to prevent an unnecessary eviction when a tenant abides by the lease agreement and keeps up with rental payments. It permits landlords to evict a tenant when a tenant:

  • Fails to pay rent after the landlord provides a written notice of nonpayment,

  • Commits a substantial lease violation and does not cure it within 10 days of receiving written notice of the violation,

  • Refuses to allow the landlord to enter the property after the landlord has given at least 72 hours of notice, unless the lease requires a longer period of notice, or

  • Refuses to sign a new rental agreement with terms that are substantially identical to the current agreement.

It also permits some no-fault evictions, which allow a landlord to evict for demolition, conversion, or substantial repairs to a residence, and for the purpose of allowing the landlord or their family to live in the unit as a primary residence. If a landlord moves forward with a no-fault eviction, they must provide two months’ rent worth of relocation assistance. Renters under 18 years old, over 60 years old, low-income, or  with a disability qualify for a third month of relocation assistance. The bill includes certain exemptions from the relocation assistance requirement, including small landlords.

The bill exempts short-term rentals and properties owned by landlords who rent out a portion of their primary residence, including an accessory dwelling unit.

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