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Rent control bill moves forward, what it could mean for Colorado Springs

Lawmakers discuss rent control for Colorado

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - Rising rent prices across Colorado are topping the agenda for legislators at the state capitol.

The steady influx of people moving to Colorado has prompted a bill - that could allow communities to start "rent control" in fast-growing cities like Colorado Springs.

It's hard to miss the dozens of apartment complexes popping up all over the area, including in Downtown Colorado Springs.

According to the website, RentCafe, the average renter in the city is paying $1,118 and living in an 857 square foot place which equates to a one bedroom, one bathroom apartment.

Lawmakers in Denver says that's too expensive for families.

Democratic Senator Julie Gonzales says, "I'm sorry but the free market has led us to this crisis."

The bill that's already passed its first Senate hearing would allow communities to decide whether or not they want to implement rent control. A previous law passed in 1981 prohibited the action.

Real Estate lawyer Debra Fortenberry says it might be what our community needs.

"Municipalities will have more latitude in these decisions. It's not a one size fits all state. What Denver needs will be different for what Durango needs will be different for what Colorado Springs needs," she says.

Opponents of the bill say the concept could backfire.

Teo Nicolais, a member of the Colorado Apartment Association says, "whenever you put a cap on prices, the amount that's supplied goes down."

The worry is developers will stop building in Colorado if they can't rent for the price they like.

Either way, it's a double-edged sword, because there's no denying more people are coming to the state and realizing how high prices are to live here.


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