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February 27, 2023

House Passes Bill to Lift Statewide Ban on Rent Stabilization

DENVER, CO - The House today passed legislation to repeal Colorado’s statewide prohibition on rent stabilization, allowing local governments to use additional tools to address housing affordability in their communities. The bill passed by a vote of 40-24.

“Skyrocketing rents are making it harder and harder for Coloradans to afford to live here while limiting their ability to save for homeownership,” Rep. Javier Mabrey, D-Denver. “As an eviction defense and housing attorney, I’ve had clients kicked out of their homes because they can’t afford their rapidly increasing rent, despite working two full-time jobs. Giving local governments the ability to use rent stabilization measures will save Coloradans money on housing, reduce displacement, and help address our state’s housing crisis.”

“Rural communities like mine are struggling to keep up with the increasing cost of living, with educators, first responders, and hospitality workers being priced out of their homes, impeding their ability to serve their community,” said Rep. Elizabeth Velasco, D-Glenwood Springs. “Solving our statewide housing crisis looks different on the Western Slope than it does on the Front Range. This bill would lift the statewide ban on rent stabilization, giving our rural areas the power to choose which tools work best for their community.”

In 1981, the Colorado legislature passed a statewide rent stabilization ban, prohibiting local governments from enacting measures that would address how much rents could increase year to year. HB23-1115 would repeal the statewide ban, allowing local governments to have the choice to implement rent stabilization measures to make housing more affordable and reduce the tide of Coloradans being displaced from their communities.

Data from the US Department of Housing and Urban Development and the US Census Bureau show that counties with rent stabilization policies in place do not see lower housing development rates than counties without them. For example, Hudson County, New Jersey, which has rent stabilization, saw 51 permits per 1,000 residents between 2010-2018. In comparison, Pueblo, Jefferson, Boulder, and Arapahoe counties had fewer permits per 1,000 residents during the same time period.

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