W ith millions of dollars in federal COVID-19 relief grant funds at stake and widespread unease about the economic impact of virus-related restrictions, political profiteers, clever enough to form a nonprofit corporation or law firm claiming to represent tenants, are pushing a false narrative that there is a so-called eviction crisis. In fact, proponents of this narrative claim that over 400,000 Coloradans are at risk of eviction this fall. While there’s no doubt people are hurting, the claim simply is untrue. The flawed math to support this exaggeration always follows the same formula: Take the number of eviction lawsuits filed during low levels of unem- ployment and rent rates and, then, extrapolate cata- strophically higher levels of evictions based on increased unemployment and rent rates. The flaw with this claim is there is no correlation or rela- tionship between eviction filings and either unemploy- ment rates or rent rates. With 5.8 million people and 627,000 rental units in Colorado, even with an eviction filing rate of less than 0.5% of rental transac- tions, more than 3,000 evictions lawsuits are filed each month in a typical (non-COVID-19) month. That number is remarkably stable. There were 38,353 filings in 2001 and 38,183 filings in 2019, even though Colorado’s population grew by 1.2 million during that time. There is a “floor” in eviction filings – they have never fallen below 36,500 in a year (regardless of our economy’s strength) and likely never will. The record high was 50,220 cases in 2007 and is only 37% above the all- time low. There is no correlation between eviction filings and changes in the unemployment rate. The eviction rate has stayed relatively stable despite large movements in unem- ployment rates. Between 2007 and 2010, the unemployment rate sky- rocketed, while eviction filings fell. In 2010, with unemployment at a modern record of 8.7% (not very different than the current 10.2%), annual evictions actually fell and totaled only 42,689, a significant decrease from 2007 when evictions totaled over 50,220, but unemploy- ment was at just 3.7%. Likewise, dramatic improvements in the Please see Page 25 INSIDE Insights from developers, brokers and lenders on the state of the Colorado multifamily market Market updates Organizations and providers are forced to adapt as the pandemic brings new challenges Affordable housing PAGES 30-36 Design and construction trends are emerging that focus on livability and resiliency Development trends PAGES 21-23 August 2020 PAGES 4-10 DrewHamrick General counsel and senior vice president of government affairs, Apartment Association of Metro Denver and Colorado Apartment Association Upcoming Colorado evictions: The sky is not falling Colorado Apartment Association With 5.8 million people and 627,000 rental units in Colorado, the eviction number has been remarkably stable since 2001, with no correlation to unemployment or rental rates.