Housing blues: Time running out for this local | VailDaily.com

Housing blues: Time running out for this local

Rick Bell
Vail, CO Colorado

I like the fact that the Daily is trying to acknowledge the fact that there is a housing crisis in Vail. I have been living in the valley now for 10 years, and I have always been a renter. I know that I should have been smart and bought a place when I moved here, but I was definitely in no place to get a loan when I moved into town. Renting in this town is the only option for a large portion of the population. When I first started renting in this town, the average rent was about $500, and now it is about $750.

Now I know that the expenses have gone up for the people that are renting in the valley, and that might have something to do with the increases. The problem is my expenses have gone up as well, and the pay rates in town haven’t increased.

The smart thing to do would be to move down-valley. But that is not why I moved here. If I was to move down-valley for the cheaper cost of living, it would be negated by the fact that I would have to drive in to work and drive in to ski. So I might as well just move to Denver and rent a house with yard and a garage for the same amount as an apartment in Eagle. I moved here so that I could live close to the mountain and ski when ever I wanted to; that wouldn’t happen if I lived down-valley.

I think that the town needs to step up and make a better effort to increase the affordable housing. Everyone is so bent on increasing the image of Vail, and no one thinks of the fact that they will need people to staff these new businesses and hotels that they are building. If the workforce has to commute from farther and farther away every year, then I think they are just going to stop coming altogether. Now, don’t get me wrong: I love this valley and the people that inhabit it; if I didn’t then I would have left a long time ago. This town is where almost all of my friends live, but if the rent keeps on going up I will no longer be able to afford to live here. Sometimes in Vail, making money gets so ingrained in our life that people forget about the little people that make everything run. As one of those little people, I just can’t afford it here for that much longer.

Well, I guess that is enough ranting for now. If anybody out there knows of an affordable two bedroom with storage space, write a letter and leave me your phone number.

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