Colorado Senate advances bill that would require landlords to show cause for eviction

Supporters of the bill say it will protect renters from retaliation while opponents say it will infringe on the rights of landlords.
eviction notice
Posted at 7:28 PM, Mar 25, 2024
and last updated 2024-03-26 11:57:04-04

DENVER — The Colorado Senate on Monday advanced legislation that would make it more difficult for landlords to evict tenants.

House Bill 24-1098 passed on second reading in a voice vote just before 5 p.m. following a long day of debate. The bill would prevent tenants from being evicted or not having their leases renewed without cause.

Sponsors of the bill say it will protect Colorado renters, especially those who fear being evicted for complaining about living conditions or other issues.

“You should not have to make a calculated decision in your mind of, ‘Will addressing this problem cost me my housing?’” said Sen. Nick Hinrichsen, D-Pueblo County, one of the bill’s Senate sponsors.

Opponents of the bill say it will raise rents and trample on the rights of landlords by forcing them to offer new leases to some tenants and limiting when they can repossess their property.

“This is infringing on an individual's property right — on their property that they own,” said Sen. Barbara Kirkmeyer, R-Weld County.

The bill also bans landlords from retaliating against renters by raising rent.

Supporters of the bill acknowledge that most evictions are a result of nonpayment of rent — landlords would still be able to evict someone for that. But they say the bill could potentially help thousands of other families across the state stay in their homes.

"We’re trying to prevent a relatively small but a meaningful number of evictions here in our state," said State. Rep. Javier Mabrey, who sponsored the bill in the Colorado House of Representatives.

The bill passed the House last month. It must be voted on in the Senate one more time before it is sent back to the House for lawmakers in that chamber to consider amendments added by the Senate. Should the House agree with the amendments, the bill would be sent to the governor.

A similar bill failed last year. Sponsors say they narrowed the scope of the bill this time around.

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