DENVER (KDVR) — It takes twice as much work to put a roof over your head in Denver as it used to and some analysts are saying that may not change anytime soon.
The Common Sense Institute, a free-market think tank, released a series of studies last week on the expense of homes in Colorado Springs, Denver and Grand Junction. Among other insights exploring the growth of housing expenses, the reports aim to determine whether or not each area has enough housing to go around.
And there isn’t.
The report estimates Denver was short 13,148- to 30,930 housing units in 2022. Grand Junction is short 897 to 2,413 units, while Colorado Springs is short 10,614 to 21,150 units. The report estimates each city is currently permitting enough housing units to bridge the gap by 2028.
However, this will only happen if homebuilders keep up the pace and if migration into each city stays on the low side. This may not be the case.
Homebuilders have had less and less confidence in the housing market over the last nine months, according to the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index. Builders could cool off their efforts as a result.
In the meantime, it takes twice as many hours to afford a mortgage payment in any of the cities.
In Colorado Springs, Denver and Grand Junction, the area’s typical mortgage payment has outpaced the growth in area wages.
In Denver, the average wage was $27.78 in 2013. At the average home price and a 30-year mortgage rate at the time, it took 48 hours of work to afford the monthly mortgage payment. In November 2022, it took 104 hours of work even at the increased average wage of $38.80.
Both Colorado Springs and Grand Junction also take roughly twice the hours to cover the mortgage.