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Surprised by affordable housing status, Denver woman could have been forced from home

Author: Adam McCoy - March 12, 2018 - Updated: March 12, 2018

Denver is fielding proposals for community land trust concepts it hopes would help alleviate the city’s high cost of housing, which is squeezing some out of Denver neighborhoods. (

The story of a Denver woman told by the city she couldn’t sell her Green Valley Ranch home for market value because of affordable housing rules got more complicated last week.

We shared FOX31’s scoop in January on Cynthia Lopez, who in the process of selling her home was surprised to learn the property was a part of the city’s affordable-housing program. While she intended to sell for $265,000, Denver said she couldn’t sell for more than $179,000. When Lopez bought her home in 2012, she said wasn’t aware it was classified as affordable housing.

But as we discovered over the weekend courtesy of Denverite, Lopez could have also been forced out of her home due to income limits associated with the affordable-housing program. As Andrew Kenney over at the online publication put it, Lopez dodged a bullet.

Basically, she proved that she met the income requirements at the time she bought the home — even though she didn’t know about them. It doesn’t matter whether she currently exceeds those limits; it’s all about your income at the time of purchase.

“Thus, she has been retroactively approved,” wrote Derek Woodbury, a spokesman for the Office of Economic Development, in an email to Denverite.

Kenney also reported other cases have surfaced of homeowners being surprised by the affordable housing status of their property and the fact could be subject to the same income restrictions.

Adam McCoy

Adam McCoy

Adam McCoy covers Denver-area politics for Colorado Politics.