Colorado

  • State Data Overview

    Across Colorado, there is a shortage of rental homes affordable and available to extremely low income households (ELI), whose incomes are at or below the poverty guideline or 30% of their area median income (AMI). Many of these households are severely cost burdened, spending more than half of their income on housing. Severely cost burdened poor households are more likely than other renters to sacrifice other necessities like healthy food and healthcare to pay the rent, and to experience unstable housing situations like evictions.

    K
    e
    y
    F
    a
    c
    t
    s
    165,567
    Or
    22%
    Renter households that are extremely low income
    $26,500
    Maximum income for 4-person extremely low income household (state level)
    -114,940
    Shortage of rental homes affordable and available for extremely low income renters
    $52,694
    Annual household income needed to afford a two-bedroom rental home at HUD's Fair Market Rent.
    74%
    Percent of extremely low income renter households with severe cost burden
  • State Level Partners

    NLIHC Housing Advocacy Organizer

    Brooke Schipporeit

    Brooke Schipporeit

    202.662.1530 x233 | [email protected]

    State Partners

    Colorado Coalition for the Homeless

    2111 Champa Street

    Denver, CO 80205

    P 303-293-2217

    F 303-293-2309

    www.coloradocoalition.org

    John Parvensky, President

    [email protected]

    Cathy Alderman, Vice President of Communications and Public Policy

    [email protected]

    Housing Colorado

    1981 Blake Street

    Denver, CO 80202

    P 303-863-0124

    F 303-863-0127

    www.housingcolorado.org

    Elena Wilken, Executive Director

    [email protected]

    Become an NLIHC State Partner

    NLIHC’s affiliation with our state coalition partners is central to our advocacy efforts. Although our partners' involvement varies, they are all housing and homeless advocacy organizations engaged at the state and federal level. Many are traditional coalitions with a range of members; others are local organizations that serve more informally as NLIHC's point of contact.

    Inquire about becoming a state partner by contacting [email protected]

    Become a Member
  • Housing Trust Fund
    HTF Implementation Information

    NLIHC continues working with leaders in each state and the District of Columbia who will mobilize advocates in support of HTF allocation plans that benefit ELI renters to the greatest extent possible. Please contact the point person coordinating with NLIHC in your state (below) to find out about the public participation process and how you can be involved. Email Brooke Schipporeit with any questions.

    NHTF logo
    Current Year HTF Allocation
    NLIHC Point Person for HTF Advocacy

    Cathy Alderman

    Vice President of Communications and Public Policy

    Colorado Coalition for the Homeless

    303-312-9638

    [email protected]


    Elena Wilken

    Executive Director

    Housing Colorado

    303-863-0123

    [email protected]

    State Designated Entity:

    Alison George

    Housing Director

    Department of Local Affairs

    Division of Housing

    303-864-7871

    [email protected] 

    Official Directly Involved with HTF Implementation:

    Carrie Kronberg 

    Housing Policy Director

    303-864-7822

    [email protected]


    Denise Selders

    Housing Development Manager

    303-864-7815

    [email protected]


    State Entity Webpage

    Colorado Department of Local Affairs


    NHTF-specific  page

    National Housing Trust Fund

  • Resources
    Resources

    Housing Profiles

    State Housing Profile

    State Housing Profile: Colorado (PDF)

    Congressional District Housing Profile

    Congressional District Profile: Colorado (PDF)

    Research and Data

    National Housing Preservation Database

    The National Housing Preservation Database is an address-level inventory of federally assisted rental housing in the United States.

    Out of Reach: The High Cost of Housing

    Out of Reach documents the gap between renters’ wages and the cost of rental housing. In Colorado and Nationwide

    The Gap: A Shortage of Affordable Rental Homes

    The Gap represents data on the affordable housing supply and housing cost burdens at the national, state, and metropolitan levels. In Colorado and Nationwide

  • Take Action
    Tell Congress to Protect and Expand the National Housing Trust Fund
    Urge Congress to Pass a Budget with Strong Support for Affordable Housing Programs
    Tell Congress that Opportunity Zones Must Benefit Low Income People and Long-Term Residents
  • COVID-19 Resources
    COVID-19 Resources

    NLIHC has estimated a need for no less than $100 billion in emergency rental assistance and broke down the need and cost for each state (download Excel spreadsheet). 

    In response to COVID-19 and its economic fallout, many cities and states are creating or expanding rental assistance programs to support individuals and families impacted by the pandemic, and NLIHC is tracking in-depth information on these programs.  

    You can use the interactive map and searchable database to find state and local emergency rental assistance programs near you. You can also see the latest news on rental assistance programs through the state-by-state news tracker. Note that this is not a comprehensive list of all rental assistance programs as we continue to update frequently. If you are aware of a program not included in our database, please contact [email protected]

    COVID-19 Emergency Rental Assistance Programs

    Across the country, homeless service providers are struggling to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. In order to follow public health guidelines and help ensure people’s safety, some shelters are being forced to reduce services, restrict admittance, or close entirely. The loss of these critical resources puts people experiencing homelessness at even higher risk of illness. Check NLIHC's cumulative list of shelter closings.

    Below is a list of shelters that have had to majorly alter services or completely close:


    The Denver Rescue Mission had to consolidate 3 large shelters down to just 2 because of staffing and supplies. These two overnight shelters then had to temporarily close on April 9. The city has leased additional hotel rooms for people with symptoms and provided 600 beds at the National Western complex to provide additional shelter.

    In Pitkin County, the area homeless shelter located at a church in Aspen stopped accepting new clients in mid-March.

    While the CDC eviction moratorium will help millions of people, the federal order is too little, too late for some Coloradans. Housing advocates, including Elena Wilken of Housing Colorado, are concerned that without rental assistance, the eviction moratorium is merely delaying, not preventing mass evictions. 

    The program manager for the Denver Public Schools Homeless Education Network reports a significant increase in student homelessness. There are fears that students and families facing homelessness are slipping through the cracks and not receiving needed resources since schools are operating remotely.  

    The Coloradoan provides an overview of the new federal eviction moratorium. The federal order accompanies local efforts to prevent evictions in Fort Collins and Larimer Court. Several Fort Collins’ City Council members, for example, are considering a prospective program that would provide legal assistance for renters facing possible eviction. 

    Updated on September 15, 2020


    The Colorado Department of Local Affairs - Division of Housing and Brothers Redevelopment, Inc. are launching the Housing Counseling and Assistance Program (HCAP). An expansion of the existing Colorado Housing Connects program, HCAP will provide residents with access to free eviction and foreclosure prevention legal services. 

    Updated on September 10, 2020


    Colorado has seen a sharp acceleration in court filings for evictions: more than 1,200 removals throughout July, and nearly 300 more in the first week of August.

    Governor Jared Polis announced on August 26 a new temporary task force within the Department of Local Affairs to examine housing instability due to COVID-19 in Colorado. The announcement of the Special Evictions Prevention Task Force met criticism from housing advocates who have urged Governor Polis to reinstate an eviction moratorium and ban on rental late fees. Additionally, an attorney with the COVID-19 Eviction Defense Project noted that the task force’s 10-person roster didn’t represent renters, including advocates who specialize in eviction defense.

    Updated on September 2, 2020.


    The Colorado Springs Indy reports that without significant federal intervention, 25 to 36% of Colorado households are at risk of eviction. A U.S. Census Bureau survey found in mid-July that 14.8% of residents had no confidence in their ability to pay rent. Research indicates that Colorado’s COVID-19-related housing crisis is disproportionately impacting women and people of color.

    Funding from the CARES Act has helped organizations move veterans experiencing homelessness in Colorado Springs to non-congregate settings. Rocky Mountain Human Services is providing funding for 317 veterans experiencing homelessness to temporarily live in motels across Colorado, with the goal to move the veterans into permanent housing.

    Updated on August 25, 2020.


    Between 436,000 and 596,000 people in Colorado — or 25%-36% of renters in the state — could be at risk of eviction by the end of the year, according to a new analysis. Governor Jared Polis extended his emergency executive order on evictions on August 11, requiring landlords to provide tenants 30 days’ notice before pursuing evictions, instead of the typical 10 days. The measure, however, does not ban evictions.

    When briefing the Denver City Council, the head of Denver’s housing department reported that the city needs more shelter beds to support people experiencing homelessness in the coming months and years. Homelessness was increasing in Denver before the pandemic, but COVID-19 has added to the number of people on the streets while also forcing shelters to decrease their capacity. 

    Updated on August 19, 2020.


    The Durango Herald discusses the urgent need for Congress to pass a package that includes emergency rental assistance to prevent a wave of evictions. The article mentioned NLIHC’s criticism of the Republican proposal, citing Diane Yentel’s statement that the proposal would do next to nothing to avoid this predictable and preventable disaster. 

    The Boulder Weekly reports that the Princeton University Eviction Lab predicts that without further statewide action and support, Colorado could see a surge of evictions in the coming weeks or months.

    Updated on August 11, 2020.


    Governor Jared Polis allowed Colorado’s temporary eviction ban to expire. Since July 1, the Denver Sheriff Department has received 139 eviction orders from the court, and about 65 of those have been carried out so far.

    Colorado State Patrol troopers, Denver police, and other city workers swept a large encampment out of Lincoln Park on July 29. The sweep occurred less than a week after the city permitted the Colorado State Patrol to enforce several ordinances, including the urban camping ban, on state property in Denver. The encampment in Lincoln Park is one of several around Denver that have grown during the pandemic, and an estimated 1,350 people are now camped out in the city.

    The Denver Post spoke with Colorado tenants facing eviction as federal unemployment benefits ended, unemployment is at near-record levels, and Governor Jared Polis let the state eviction moratorium lapse. 

    Updated on August 4, 2020.


    Housing and homelessness advocates in Colorado are warning that homelessness will rise unless Congress acts. Cathy Alderman of the Colorado Coalition for the Homeless, an NLIHC state partner, discussed why preventing mass evictions should be a public health priority. 

    Last month, about 12% of Colorado renters and 4.5% of homeowners said that they had missed their housing payment.

    Updated on July 28, 2020.


    rise in homelessness as a result of the coronavirus pandemic has already begun in Colorado. Landlords have filed more than 800 eviction cases since June 1, and the pace is likely to increase rapidly. When urged by housing advocates to renew the statewide eviction moratorium, Governor Jared Polis has responded that he needs to balance the needs of property owners with those of tenants.

    Updated on July 20, 2020.


    Governor Jared Polis allowed the statewide eviction ban to lapse in June, and Denver Public Safety Director Murphy Robinson signed an order on July 1 that allows law enforcement in Denver to carry out evictions. Hours before Colorado’s eviction moratorium expired, Governor Polis issued an executive order on June 13 that delayed legal proceedings against tenants for another month. Under the June 13 executive order, landlords were permitted to resume posting notices demanding payment, but those notices must provide tenants 30 days to pay their back rent - meaning that many landlords could begin filing eviction claims on July 14.

    A commentary in Colorado Newsline argues that Governor Jared Polis and Democratic leaders are failing to protect communities from homelessness amid the pandemic. Governor Polis allowed the state’s eviction moratorium to expire on June 13, placing thousands of Coloradans at risk of eviction and homelessness.

    Denver Mayor Michael B. Hancock announced on July 1 his support for two proposals to support and serve people experiencing homelessness: the establishment of temporary, managed campsites and the creation of a new dedicated funding source.

    Updated on July 13, 2020.


    A commentary in Colorado Newsline argues that Governor Jared Polis and Democratic leaders are failing to protect communities from homelessness amid the pandemic. Governor Polis allowed the state’s eviction moratorium to expire on June 13, placing thousands of Coloradans at risk of eviction and homelessness.

    Testing at nine Denver shelters in late May and early June revealed that between six and seven percent of people experiencing homelessness tested positive for the coronavirus. While this rate is higher than the positive rate of the overall population in Denver, the results are much lower than those from earlier tests. Cathy Alderman of the Colorado Coalition for the Homeless, an NLIHC state partner, said that these results prove the effectiveness of raising awareness about COVID-19 and ensuring that people who are medically-vulnerable or test positive for the coronavirus are separated from others experiencing homelessness.

    Updated on July 7, 2020.


    The Greeley Tribune discusses the disagreements between tenant and landlord groups about the best way to move forward after Governor Jared Polis’ most recent and more limited order to delay evictions expires July 13. “Right now, we are thinking 300,000 to 400,000 people face eviction risk in Colorado,” said Executive Director and Co-Founder of the COVID Eviction Defense Project Zach Neumann.

    Updated on June 29, 2020.


    Housing and homelessness advocates in Connecticut are working to find permanent housing for people experiencing homelessness as the temporary housing acquired due to the pandemic are set to expire at the end of June. The goal is to find permanent housing for 1,000 people in the next 120 days.

    Updated on June 12, 2020.


    Cathy Alderman of the Colorado Coalition for the Homeless, an NLIHC state partner, wrote a Letter to the Editor in the Sentinel Colorado, urging Congress to provide emergency rental assistance to keep Coloradans safe and stably housed.

    While every state in the Mountain West has some type of rental assistance program in place, housing advocates hope that these programs receive funding to keep up with the ongoing need. Rental assistance is needed to keep people stably housed amid the economic fallout of COVID-19.

    Updated on June 12, 2020.


    Aurora will begin providing rental assistance to eligible tenants who have been impacted by the pandemic. The rental assistance program will offer up to two months of payments directly to landlords and property managers. At least $620,000 will be available initially, and the funds will come from the House Aurora Partnership and block grants. 


    Colorado announced the recipients of a third round of funds from the Colorado COVID Relief Fund. A committee who advises the fund tracks the most pressing community needs found that requests for rental assistance and food comprise 40% of calls to the state’s resource hotline. 


    Colorado affordable housing advocates proposed a plan to Governor Jared Polis and other state officials that could potentially prevent a wave of evictions and homelessness when the statewide moratorium expires on May 31. The plan calls for more than $196.5 million in direct rental assistance and additional housing resources.


    Kaiser Permanent and Denver County announced a $1 million contribution to support Denver’s Housing and Homeless Services Fund. This fund will be used for coronavirus suppression efforts, including isolation/quarantine of individuals experiencing homelessness, expanded testing, contract tracing, and cleaning and hygiene supplies.


    Colorado community health centers are going mobile and expanding their telehealth services to better support people experiencing homelessness. Peak Vista Community Health Centers established a new specialty clinic in Colorado Springs, making it easier to provide medical and behavioral care services to people experiencing homelessness during the pandemic.

    The Colorado Coalition for the Homeless, an NLIHC state partner, has provided most of the coronavirus testing for people experiencing homelessness in Denver. The coalition screened 52 men and women experiencing homelessness, and of the 45 who showed no symptoms, 12, or 26%, tested positive for the virus. Two of the seven people who showed symptoms tested positive. The Colorado Coalition for the Homeless used the results of its pilot study to urge the state for additional resources.

    The Denver Department of Public Works cleaned several homeless encampments on May 7. City crews moved the belongings of people staying in the encampments into a nearby parking lot, picked up trash, and power washed the sidewalk. The city allowed people to return to the areas because of the CDC’s guidance to refrain from sweeping encampments during the pandemic.

    Colorado awarded a total of $3 million to 20 organizations to provide short-term rental and mortgage assistance for low-income families. Nonprofits across the state expect the funds to be spent quickly. Governor Jared Polis established the $3 million fund in a March 20 executive order to ensure that Colorado residents did not lose housing due to the pandemic.


    Colorado Governor Jared Polis has only issued guidance to limit evictions, rather than enacting a statewide eviction moratorium. With courts and local governments left to make decisions on evictions, thousands of Colorado renters are facing uncertainty and fear about the possibility of being evicted.

    COVID-19 is creating opportunities for novel legal strategies for challenging cities and states to ensure that all residents have access to safe housing. An attorney representing advocacy groups and two people experiencing homelessness is arguing that Colorado should provide safe housing for people experiencing homelessness, citing the existence of an equal protection violation since housed residents are better able to obey the state’s stay-at-home order.

    Denver

    The Denverite reports that the city and service providers are developing innovative ideas to house individuals experiencing homelessness, but families experiencing homelessness in Denver are left behind.

    Updated on July 20, 2020.


    Denver is expanding coronavirus testing among people experiencing homelessness. A spokeswoman for the city announced on May15 that 299 people experiencing homelessness in Denver have tested positive for the coronavirus, and six of those individuals who tested positive have died.


    City workers swept a large homeless encampment in Denver on April 30. A spokeswoman for the city stated that the sweep was prompted by concern that the area was becoming “increasingly hazardous.”


    More than 250 Colorado National Guard members are helping the city and county of Denver to shelter people experiencing homelessness.

    Colorado Coalition for the Homeless is implementing COVID-19 testing at one of its health centers in Denver.

    Denver is seeking National Guard assistance in expanding and staffing homeless shelters amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

    In Denver’s homeless shelters, residents find it impossible to stay six feet apart from one another. To address this issue, Denver started bussing homeless men out of cramped shelters to a temporary facility where up to 600 individuals will sleep on cots spaced at least six-feet by 10-feet apart. 

    Article TitleLink

    LETTERS: Congress must provide emergency rental assistance to protect Coloradans during Pandemic

    Sentinel Colorado
    Michael Bennet: Coronavirus and a housing crisis go hand in hand. Congress must act.The Colorado Sun
    Email Letters: June 3, 2020The Daily Sentinel

    Federal, state, and local eviction moratoriums are rapidly expiring and the CARES Act supplemental unemployment benefits will end soon; at that time, millions of low-income renters will be at risk of losing their homes. The NLIHC estimates at least $100 billion in emergency rental assistance is needed to keep low-income renters stably housed during and after the pandemic. This tracker links to news reports of the growing evictions crisis in various cities and states. Check NLIHC's cumulative list of eviction updates.


    Colorado has seen a sharp acceleration in court filings for evictions: more than 1,200 removals throughout July, and nearly 300 more in the first week of August. This is significantly up from the earlier months of the pandemic when the courts were all but frozen. The Colorado Springs Indy reports that in Colorado, a United States Census Bureau survey meant to measure the impact of the pandemic, found in mid-July that 14.8 percent of state residents had no confidence in their ability to pay rent. The impacts of the housing crisis are disproportionately impacting women and people of color. In Colorado, 3 percent of white people weren’t confident they could pay rent compared to more than 27 percent of Latino people and 8.9 percent of Black people, according to the last week of the Census survey. Five times as many women than men responded that they had no confidence in their ability to pay rent, and almost 50 percent of respondents reported a loss in employment income, the survey found.

    Updated on August 28, 2020.


    Between 436,000 and 596,000 people in Colorado — or 25%-36% of renters in the state — could be at risk of eviction by the end of the year, according to a new analysis. Colorado landlords must continue to provide renters some grace as the state continues to weather the coronavirus pandemic, as Gov. Jared Polis extended his emergency executive order on evictions Monday.

    Updated: August 12


    Eviction cases have resumed both remotely and in person. When the eviction moratorium expired, the Governor issued a new executive order mandating that landlords could not file evictions without giving tenants a 30 day notice through Aug. 11 (a protection the NHLP argues is now permanent federal law due to the CARES Act). The previous notice period in Colorado was 10 days. Governor also asked the Department of Local Affairs work with landlords to institute repayment plans. 

    Updated: August 1


    In the third week of July, one in five adults in Colorado reported they had missed their previous housing payment or had little confidence they would make their next one on time, according to a weekly survey conducted by the Census. In the same survey, 127,974 renters reported they had not paid their previous rental payment

    Housing advocates are reporting that COVID-19 related homelessness has already hit the state. More than 800 eviction cases have been filed since June 1

    DenverHomeless shelters in Denver are logging about 1,700 visitors per night, more than they would during the coldest nights of the year. July 13

    Updated: July 29


    400,000 Coloradans are at risk of evictions. After allowing their eviction moratorium to expire in June, Governor Polis released an executive order to require a 30 day notice before eviction, which legal aid experts claim will only delay the inevitable. According to a weekly survey by the Census, 1 in 5 adults in the state either missed their last housing payment or have little/no confidence of being able to make next month’s housing payment.

    Updated: July 16

    COVID-19 Resources Other

    National Media

    What to Know About Housing and Rent During the COVID-19 Emergency? https://tinyurl.com/y74ox85d

    Arbor Realty Trust launched an innovative $2 million rental assistance program to help thousands of tenants and families significantly impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak. Arbor is contributing $1 million to the program and participating borrowers will match Arbor's advances to its tenants in need to help fill the rent gap during the hard-hit months of May and June. Together, the partnership program will provide $2 million in relief. https://tinyurl.com/y9r6x9vb