By Jeff McCoy. Originally published by The Center Square on September 9, 2020.
"Rent and housing prices in Boulder are punishingly high: last year, the average rent for a one-bedroom apartment was $1,823 per month, making it one of the most expensive markets in the country. Not surprisingly, many residents are searching for ways to make housing more affordable.
Prices are high because there’s not enough supply — and prohibitive land use laws make it hard to build enough new housing. But one local organization 'Bedrooms Are For People' has been promoting an idea to make more use of existing homes. Their proposal would eliminate local laws that restrict unrelated persons from living together under one roof. Under new rules, any home could have the same number of unrelated persons living together as the homes number of bedrooms, plus one...
...To better understand why Boulder is facing a housing crisis, it’s important to understand the principal culprit of the housing shortage: a discriminatory land use code. Under current law, areas zoned for single-family homes do not limit the number of people who can live in a house, but the law requires that they all be related.
Relaxing these regulations will not allow an unlimited number of people to live in a home, but it would end the unnecessary distinction between related and unrelated occupants."