Aspen-Pitkin County Housing Authority raises asset caps for renters, owners |

Aspen-Pitkin County Housing Authority raises asset caps for renters, owners

Staff report

Residents in the market for affordable housing can now have substantially more assets to qualify for rental or ownership through the Aspen/Pitkin County Housing Authority.

In separate meetings Tuesday, Pitkin County commissioners and the Aspen City Council blessed an APCHA board decision to amend the housing guidelines by adapting new net assets caps for Categories 1 through 7 and Resident Occupied.

Asset caps last changed in 2002.

A 2016 policy study by APCHA showed that the asset caps at the time excluded an estimated 36 percent of employee households working in Pitkin County from qualifying for rental or ownership. The study also showed the caps skewed income categories and created inequities, disincentives to saving for retirement, college education and other such life expenses as health care and child care.

“These are important and positive policy changes for the community,” said APCHA Executive Director Mike Kosdrosky. “Not only do they improve fairness and opportunity for working households in Pitkin County, but the methodology to update net asset caps is now defined, transparent and understandable.”

Under the old assets cap, two adult renters of a Category 3 unit, for example, were limited to $135,000 in net assets per household. The new guidelines increased that amount to $400,000.

Similar increase rates play across the board for all rental and ownership categories. The Resident Occupied category also increased its net asset cap from $900,000 to $2.2 million.

The new guidelines take effect immediately.