09 November 2015

Building Codes Are Still A Barrier To Affordable Housing

Denver's building codes arbitrarily disallow many "tiny-houses" which could otherwise alleviate affordable housing.  Building and zoning codes in Denver also place unduly restrictive limitations on accessory dwelling units and single occupancy hotels and hostels.

Eliminating code created barriers to affordable housing would do more to help households that find rents in Denver to be too high than current programs that require developers in large developments to create a certain number of units of affordable housing which have produced almost no results in practice so far.

The basic political reality is that those restrictions have remained in place because of NIMBY concerns of neighborhood associations afraid of higher densities and an influx of undesirable people into their neighborhoods.

A policy of making loans to developers of a handful of rent controlled apartment complexes, which is one of the main ways that Denver promotes affordable housing is not an effective solution to the problem.

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