Colorado evictions top 3,000 a month, a return to pre-pandemic normal as rental aid comes to an end

State will run out of funds in coming months, with no firm replacement set

Seth Klamann
The Denver Post
A protestor holds a sign through the moonroof of a car during a “Cancel the Rents!” Denver car protest held along Lincoln Street in Denver on Saturday, Feb. 27, 2021
Daniel Brenner/Special to the Denver Post

FRONT RANGE — Charlene Winn moved from the street to her Lowry apartment five years ago. It wasn’t a palace — a small kitchen and living room, her bedroom, the bathroom — but it was a home, her home. Then the pandemic hit, and she lost her job. Her rent went up by $150, a sharp spike for someone on a fixed income, and her debt climbed.

Winn is one of more than 34,000 households in Colorado who’ve benefitted from emergency rental assistance since the pandemic began. The state has spent more than $290 million in federal money to keep those residents housed, and local governments have doled out millions more.

After she was served with a demand for unpaid rent, Winn was connected through a community group to the state’s emergency rental assistance program, which paid nearly $10,000 and covered her through November. She won’t need more beyond that: She’s caught up now, and the two new part-time jobs she works will cover her moving forward.

But the funding is running out.

State officials estimate rental assistance will run out at some point in early 2023. Some local programs are already dry, like Aurora’s, and others, like Denver, are beginning to impose limits.


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