Denver’s elected officials are advancing a controversial plan that would require landlords to obtain a permit to lease long-term rental property in the city, starting next year.
Why it matters: The city lacks a database to track how many long-term rentals are in Denver, and a new licensing program would fix that, Council President Stacie Gilmore says.
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Knowing the number of rentals is critical to solving the city’s affordable housing crisis, proponents argue.
Yes, but: Landlords are likely to pass the costs of required inspections and licensing to tenants who are already struggling to get by in a high-priced market.
"So it’s not really helping the tenants," said William Bronchick, president of the Colorado Landlords Association.
A Gilmore spokesperson disputed the notion, telling Axios that the proposal would keep application and license fees low, essentially requiring a payment of $225 over four years.
Of note: The plan would mark one of the largest licensing expansions in Denver history and require new hires to ensure compliance, Excise and Licenses Department spokesman Eric Escudero tells Axios.
Denver has an estimated 50,000+ rental properties that would need licenses, he said. That's eight times as many as the largest category the agency currently regulates.
The big picture: The proposal, which will be voted on by the full council in the coming weeks, has the backing of Hancock’s administration, spokesperson Mike Strott tells Axios.
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