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Habitat for Humanity Column: Help us Partner with Local Families

GAIL SCHWARTZ; POST INDEPENDENT

When visionary local activists established Habitat for Humanity of the Roaring Fork Valley in 1999, they likely never envisioned that a single-family home in Aspen could go for $110 million cash — a record sale price in April 2024.


As we all know, resort real estate sale prices have been driving housing prices in the Roaring Fork Valley and Colorado River Valley since before the turn of the millennium. Today, the scale of the problem that our communities and workforce families face is at an entirely different level. Habitat for Humanity’s work has become even more difficult: building homes with local families at a price point they can actually afford.


Jobs are plentiful, and employees are in demand throughout the Roaring Fork Valley. The ever-increasing cost of free-market housing is significantly diminishing the ability of our businesses, institutions, and communities to function and deliver services. The 1999 housing study showed that our region, from Aspen to Parachute, would require 5,700 new homes for existing workforce families by 2027. We have, in fact, surpassed that mark today due to the impacts of COVID-19 and the ever-increasing prices of local housing stock.