Housing Struggles in the City of Choice


Based on the rising cost of housing in Edgewater, we believe it is important to tell the stories of those struggling to find or keep their housing situation in Edgewater. These folks are our bartenders, our teachers, our city employees. They are our neighbors.

Send us an email at joel@edgewatercollective.org describing your struggle to find or keep your housing in Edgewater and what impact rising rents and house prices has had on you and your family.

I felt compelled to tell our story as I’m sure we aren’t alone in this small community.

Let me preface this by providing some information.  I am unmarried, self-employed, 34 year old female.  I have lived near downtown in one adjacent suburb or another for the last 10 years.  Having grown up in the suburbs I longed for the culture and proximity living near the city provides.    In 2006 I rented a  600 sq ft shotgun style home built in 1892 in the Highlands for $750/month.  That neighborhood began to boom in 2007 and I was pushed out in 2009 as 3 story duplexes began to grow around my quaint little old home.

Next, I moved in with a few other adults to live on 29th and Julian in a somehow still affordable rental home.  $1500/month.  Alas, that property was sold from underneath us tenants.

While living with the aforementioned roomates I had found myself also in love.  It was a new relationship so we weren’t too keen on moving in together and I was done with roomates.  I was fortunate to have located the Estate Park Townhomes on 26th and Depew immediately after them having been remodeled (which had not been done since they were built).  2011, $750/month for a 2 br townhome.  Boyfriend moved in…  2012, $850/month.  2013, $950/month.  Thin walls, no dishwasher, my unit had outdated cabinetry, communal laundry.  So, instead of 2014 and $1050 we rented a home on Chase st.

Two little homes sit next to each other on chase.  Since the mid 90’s both homes were owned by the same couple.  Tired with keeping up the properties, they sold them, both, and a woman bought them both for just over $300k.  Both homes sit on a half acre lot.  We met the new owner, showed interest in the older of the two homes (1882 making it one of the oldest still standing in Denver), offered to rent the property and clean and fix it up.  We had explained to her that we were looking to rent for at least 5 years.  8 months later, in Spring 2015 she sold both properties to developers.

Our landlords, current redevelopers of our property are wonderful, pleasant and helpful humans… but we are sitting on a time bomb.  For the last year and a half we’ve been in fear of having to call if something breaks, worried that they would decide to terminate our lease and cut their losses.  Because now, we are attempting/forced to attempt to buy a home, on what is too little money it seems.  Do we buy and pay $1700/month mtg so we don’t have to pay $2000/month rent?  We can’t afford to live/rent/buy in Edgewater, which we have grown to love so much.

We are the 30 somethings that helped make the neighborhood desireable.  We are the bartenders at Providence, we’re the cooks at Sloans, we’re the artist in the gallery, the guitar teachers, yoga instructors and smoothie makers… we brought life, color and renewed interest to this quaint square mile.  WE are why people want to live in this community, we ARE the community.  When we can’t afford to live in Edgewater anymore, Edgewater will be no more.

– Andee

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