It’s an exciting yet challenging time to be a renter in Colorado Springs. After years of population growth and a lag in rental housing to support it, developers, both local and national, are now making significant investment to help house Front Range renters.
In the first three quarters of 2018 alone, around 750 apartments were added to the city’s supply of around 49,500 apartments, according to a recent report published by the Colorado Division of Housing and the Apartment Association of Southern Colorado. More than 1,500 have been added in the past five years, according to the report.
“The citywide residential market caught fire in 2017, with rising rental rates and increased construction pace both downtown and throughout the city,” according to the 2018 State of Downtown Colorado Springs report, published annually by the Colorado Springs Downtown Partnership.
Division of Housing data show that average rent in Colorado Springs last year was around $1,150, with the highest average being around $1,250 in northeast Colorado Springs and the lowest average being around $960 in the central part of the city.
But rates aren’t the only thing changing. Housing options throughout the city are diversifying, which is in part aimed at serving the area’s growing populations of both millennials and seniors—and everyone in between. Here’s an overview of what you’ll find around town.
Central and Downtown
Average rent: $800-$1,200
Downtown Colorado Springs has recently seen the addition of several new, modern, high-rise apartment buildings that add hundreds of units to the city’s core. As of 2018, more than 500 new residential units had been completed or were in the process of being added to the downtown market.
Blue Dot Place, a four-level, 33-unit apartment complex in south downtown, was the area’s first multifamily development to come online since 1960 and served as a catalyst for development in the surrounding area. The revitalization of the downtown housing market has stimulated population growth in the city’s core and attracted residents both young and old. Sarah Mishler, 36, lives at the recently completed 172-unit 333 ECO apartment complex near the middle of downtown and says that it provides a quality of life that suits her well.
“I like being close to the arts and culture of our city, as well as unique activities and events,” she says. “I love being able to walk or bike to great restaurants and enjoy trails nearby without having to get in my car.”
Laurel Justice, 54, moved into Blue Dot Place in 2018 and says that living downtown in general, and living at Blue Dot in particular, has been a game-changer.
“I’ve always wanted to live downtown—everything I do is downtown,” she says. “I was looking for a life that was more walkable … and to develop more familiarity with people in the community—to focus more on people.”
Justice says she enjoys the fact that downtown Colorado Springs is “pretty multicultural” and is now home to wide-ranging demographics.
While the recent downtown developments are new, shiny and exciting, there are also many more traditional options. Central Colorado Springs has long held a large inventory of cottages, Victorian apartment buildings and older complexes that offer wide variety for renters looking to live in the downtown area.
Average rent: $850-$1,500
Historically, the Westside rental market has been populated mostly by large Victorians, bungalows and a smattering of older, medium-sized apartment complexes.
But like downtown, the Westside has seen revitalization and construction, with new developments adding considerable inventory to the area—especially in terms of luxury housing. New developments include The Gabion, 22 Spruce and The Signature at Promontory Pointe.
One popular complex is Stepping Stones, a 1980s apartment and condominium development near the intersection of Uintah and 19th Street.
Tom Kushnerick lives at Stepping Stones with his wife and three kids and says his primary draw to the Westside was proximity to close family friends, as well as the many nearby natural amenities.
“The people are by far the greatest consideration for my family when we considered the Westside for renting,” Kushnerick says. “We love the access to great trails, parks and mountains too.”
Kushnerick says his family likely could have rented a similar apartment in another part of town for a lesser rate, but that the quality of life—community and connectedness—on the Westside is worth the decision to pay a bit more in monthly rent.
Average rent: $880-$1,800
The northern part of the city has a wide variety of rental offerings and, while being a longtime favorite area for professionals and military families, has attracted a sizable population of Denver commuters.
In real estate, residential tends to follow commercial development; and that is certainly the case in areas such as Northgate and Interquest, along the northern terminus of the Powers Corridor. Among the more recently constructed developments are The Overlook at Interquest, Springs at Allison Valley and Sagebrook Apartment Homes.
Emily Delong, 32, lives in a duplex on the Air Force Academy campus with her husband and three children, plus her father. She says her family prefers the north side for a variety of practical reasons, the most important of which is access to resources.
“It had a lot to do with the school district—we really like D20—and the fact that my dad needed to have accessible healthcare, and it’s close to resources on the Academy and UC Health,” Delong says.
She says the rates are reasonable but getting more competitive. Still she says it’s worth paying a bit more to keep her kids in a school district with good resources for special needs. One of her children is autistic.
“That was the main reason we wanted to stay in that district, because we feel that their special needs programs are actually really good,” she says.
Average rent: $890-1,650
The eastern part of Colorado Springs is one of the city’s largest submarkets and thus has an ever-diversifying rental market.
The demographically diverse east side is home to large populations of professional and military families. Both of the region’s Air Force bases, Schriever and Peterson, are located here.
Large private investment along the Powers Corridor has resulted in a wide variety of shopping, dining and employment options. And housing growth has boomed, both single-family and multifamily.
Examples of newer east-side apartment complexes include Creekside at Palmer Park, Affinity at Colorado Springs and Cortland Powers North, as well as retirement communities such as Province Springs and Aspen Trail Retirement Resort.
Average rent: $850-1,630
Southern Colorado Springs hasn’t seen as much recent change as other submarkets, but remains stable and offers some affordability for the area’s large military population of nearby Fort Carson and the Cheyenne Mountain Complex.
Newer complexes near Fort Carson include the Pines at Broadmoor Bluffs, Broadmoor Ridge Apartment Homes and the Cobblestone Ridge Apartments. But there are ample older multifamily complexes, as well as single-family rentals and official base housing.
Nearby, the Broadmoor and Ivywild neighborhoods offer more luxury options, such as the Cheyenne Creek Luxury Apartment Homes, the recently reconstructed and rebranded Luxe Tower, and soon-to-come projects along revitalizing South Nevada Avenue. Older homes and apartment buildings are available as well.
These southwest neighborhoods attract young and old alike with their access to trails and natural scenery, as well as a rise in redevelopment that has been exemplified in recent years by the Ivywild School, which houses a craft brewery, distillery, coffee shop and events venue.
View a detailed list of the average rents based on the Colorado Springs Metro Apartment Vacancy and Rent Study, Third Quarter 2018.