DENVER (KDVR) — Renters in Colorado are bracing for an end to protection against eviction now that the U.S. Supreme Court has overturned the federal moratorium.
Since January, Colorado’s Division of Housing has paid more than $100 million in state and federal aid to renters. Another $9 million has been approved.
Galen, a college graduate working as a stadium janitor to make ends meet, said assistance is crucial.
“The pain is just not knowing where you’re going to go. It’s a simple as that,” he said.
Programs in Colorado offer eviction legal support, as well as rent and utility assistance, bolstered by federal assistance.
Of more than 60,000 applications, approximately 36,000 have been approved. Many applications are denied because of errors or duplicates.
“Housing providers are able to be creative and keep their tenants housed,” Destiny Bossert of the Colorado Apartment Association told the Problem Solvers.
When it comes to tenants who don’t receive funding, landlords face special challenges.
“They still have mortgages to pay, still have to keep employees and taxes and all that, so it’s important that they are able to stay solvent,” Bossert said.
Legal experts tell the Problem Solvers finding a middle ground can be the key to helping both sides survive.
“Seeing if they can make a payment plan for the back rent is a possibility, or they can make a deal that they will be out in a specific amount of time and the landlord will dismiss the case,” attorney Jacob Eppler said.
The Colorado Apartment Association reports that right now, the state is at a 2% rent underpayment rate.
Protest groups say they will hold rallies this fall calling for all back rent and mortgage debt to be wiped clean.
How to get help paying rent in Colorado or Denver
If you need rent assistance visit the Colorado Department of Local Affairs website.
Denver’s Department of Housing Stability, or HOST, contracts with nonprofit partners to provide eviction legal assistance to Denver households who meet income guidelines, as well as to seniors without regard to income.
Rent and utility assistance is also available through Denver’s rent and utility assistance program, or call 1-844-926-6632.