Do you rent in Colorado? New renters rights took effect Oct. 1

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(File, Nexstar)

DENVER (KDVR) — Colorado renters have new protections under laws that took effect Oct. 1.

HB21-1121 and SB21-173 passed through the Colorado legislature during this year’s session.

The COVID-19 Eviction Defense Project summarized some of the highlights.

Leases and rent

  • Landlords are prevented from raising rent more than once a year
  • A tenant without a written rental agreement must get 60 days written notice before rent is hiked
  • Renters can recover financial damages if they’re illegally locked out or wrongfully evicted by their landlord

Late fees

  • Landlords can’t charge a late fee unless payment is at least seven days late
  • No late fee can be more than $50 a month of 5% of monthly rent, whichever is more

Evictions

  • Tenants can respond in court at any time on the day that response is due, and the court must set the trial for 7-10 days later
  • Tenants can claim a breach of the Colorado Warranty of Habitability statute (for example, if a house has a pest infestation, toxic mold or an essential appliance that does not work), and the judge can reduce the amount of rent owed to the landlord
  • Renters can pay owed rent to stop the eviction before a judge makes a decision
  • The document that allows a sheriff to actually remove a tenant from a property cannot come until 48 hours after the judgment, and a sheriff can’t execute it until at least 10 days after the judgment is entered

Read more in this summary from the COVID-19 Eviction Defense Project.

Anyone who needs rental help can call the Colorado Housing Connects hotline at 844-926-6632 or visit Colorado’s Department of Local Affairs website for resources statewide.

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