Housing Cost and Availability in Centennial


The City of Centennial has launched a Housing Study to explore housing costs and availability in Centennial and to understand the entire spectrum of housing issues, define various needs for housing and identify priorities to potentially inform policy.

This study is a major undertaking that prioritizes community input and collaboration among a wide range of community stakeholders. It is anticipated to take one-year to complete this study.

Engage Today!

The City plans to send various communication such as e-newsletters to those willing to be involved and provide input and will include three major milestones:

  • Housing Needs Assessment
  • Public Engagement on Housing Strategies and Development of Housing Policy
  • Land Development Code modifications and other policy action

Did You Know? 

In 2021, the Colorado Legislature passed House Bill 21-1271 to encourage local governments to look at 14 strategies intended to promote affordable housing development. Affordable housing developments are not “one-size-fits-all.” They actually exist in a variety of shapes, sizes, structures, and income levels, so a 15th strategy was created to allow local governments to propose their own ideas and innovative strategies not included in the bill. A conversation with Centennial City Council identified seven (7) of the bill’s proposed strategies and two (2) innovative strategies that Centennial should explore further. These include some of the public’s inquiries and requests (such as potentially allowing Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs) or requiring developers to include affordable housing) and some that are less commonly in the public view.

What's Next? 

The Housing Study and Policy Development Project outreach will transition to asking the community for feedback about each of these strategies, one at a time. To ensure participants with any level of background can contribute, the materials shared will include a brief description of the strategy, how it would work in Centennial, what benefits it could bring, and possible considerations for regulations. 

A strategy being included in this outreach DOES NOT mean the City has decided to move forward with the strategy. It DOES mean we want your input to determine if the strategy is right for Centennial.

The strategies we will explore together over the coming months are:

  1. Help reduce the amount of start-up time and cost for affordable housing developments by streamlining the development review process when the project meets specific City design and development standards for affordability.
  2. Help reduce the amount of start-up time and cost for housing redevelopment projects by streamlining the development review process for converting underutilized or vacant commercial or office buildings to housing.
  3. Encourage the creation of more space or units within a residential housing development by establishing a density bonus program when affordable housing meets specific City standards as part of the development. The bonus space may be included in either market-rate or affordable units.
  4. Increase housing options for a range of ages by authorizing Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs) in some areas. Design and development standards as well as neighborhood suitability will be explored.
  5. Include affordable units and housing opportunities in a range of locations by requiring that some percentage of affordable housing (either for-sale or for-rent) be included in new housing developments of a certain size, such as 10 units or more (commonly called inclusionary zoning).
  6. Help reduce the amount of start-up time and cost for affordable housing developments by adjusting common development fees (such as building permit fees) for affordable housing.
  7. Incentivize the use of existing rental units for a wider range of incomes by providing funding to landlords that allows them to lower prices of rental units for qualified applicants, while still maintaining their income stream.
  8. Reduce the overall costs of housing development by creating a funding method that allows the City to offset infrastructure costs associated with affordable housing development.
  9. Reduce the overall costs of housing development by creating a land donation or land banking program that can help hold land for future affordable housing development.

Question of the Week

Please select all of the strategies (shortened from the list above) that generate questions for you?

  1. Streamlined development review for affordable housing
  2. Streamlined development review for converting underutilized commercial/office property to housing
  3. Establish a density bonus program
  4. Allow Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs) in some areas where they are deemed appropriate
  5. Implement an inclusionary zoning policy
  6. Adjust development fees for affordable housing
  7. Incentivize current landlords to lower prices of existing units
  8. Establish a dedicated funding source to adjust infrastructure costs associated with affordable development
  9. Create a land donation or land banking program

Please expand on what questions you have about any of these strategies (and please reference the strategy number with your question(s)). Tell us here.

Previous Questions of the Week

Week of June 3, 2022

Did You Know? Fifty-seven percent of households in Centennial are one- or two-person households. In comparison, only 13 percent of homes sold in Centennial in 2020-2022 are studios or units with one or two bedrooms. 

QuestionWhen you think about your housing situation, where would you hope to be in five years? 

a)  I hope to be in the same home; b)  I hope to be in a larger home; c)  I hope to be in a smaller home; d)  I hope to be in a home with a similar size but different layout or amenities; e)  I hope for something different, or I am undecided; How would this new housing situation better meet your needs? What could Centennial do to help you achieve this goal? Tell us here.

Number of Responses Received (as of 6/15/2022):41

Sample Responses:

Not planning on moving, but if I did, I guess the next logical steps considering we are seniors, would be a place with no outdoor work; level entry; garage or public transportation.”

“I would prefer not to see large multiple story apartments built. Maybe a few condominiums that people could purchase.  I'm not pleased about Southglenn's expansion into more apartments.”

“Centennial should allow smaller (tiny home type) to be built on same property. Seniors can’t afford to move.”

Week of May 16, 2022

Did You Know? Approximately 78% of homes in the City of Centennial are single-family detached homes. For comparison, 50% of homes in the City of Lone Tree are single-family detached homes. 

QuestionWhat types of housing options would you like to see more of in the City of Centennial? 

a)  Single-family detached homes; b)  Duplexes or triplexes; c)  Townhomes; d)  Multifamily apartments and condominiums; e)  Other; You can still respond and tell us here.

Number of Responses Received (as of 6/15/2022):57

Sample Responses:

 “Something affordable for young families. Or put some kind of limit on how many houses investors can own. I want my kids and grand kids to be able to live somewhere  safe. The price of housing and investors do now allow for that. Houses are purchased in cash and swooped up before regular people have a chance. It’s sad.”

"I wanted to select more than one, but I'd love more Townhomes and Duplex/triplex options! As a single mother with young children, it would be very nice to have more affordable home options that were not a single-family detached home.”

“The whole point of Suburbia is to not be Denver.”

 “I live in a single family detached home, but I understand that not everyone can afford a home of this size. It would be really good for younger folks, or older persons looking into downsizing, to have more multi family apartments and condos AND townhomes (I could only select one).”

Week of May 2, 2022

Did You Know? Approximately 18% of homes in the City of Centennial are for-rent housing options. For comparison, 40% of homes in the City of Lone Tree are for-rent housing options.

Question: The City of Centennial has for-rent housing options that fit your income, needs, and lifestyle. Agree? Disagree? You can still respond and tell us here.

Number of Responses Received (as of 6/15/2022): 33

Sample Responses:

“To afford rent in Centennial - as a single person - I have to work 2 jobs possibly even 3 jobs - - I don't have spouse and do not want roommates. Which unfortunately is the situation I had to go to in order to afford to rent. Rent in Colorado as a whole has gone up since the pandemic over 21%?! If you were not a home owner before, you can't even afford to become one now.”

"I am 77 and had looked for reasonable accommodations as a senior. 55 and over had cost of $2-3000. That would use my savings in a too short time.”

“Centennial has a severely inadequate supply of affordable rental units for low income and middle income residents and workers seeking to live where they work.”

“Perhaps I am reading into this too much, but I get the impression that you have an objective of increasing the amount of affordable housing in Centennial. I believe you should focus on improving the income levels of people so they can afford to live in Centennial. Work on attracting high paying jobs. Work on lowering taxes and inflation so people have more money in their pockets. Teach people how to save and spend their money wisely. Let’s not continue to enable poverty.” 

Week of April 18, 2022

Did You Know? Approximately 82% of homes in the City of Centennial are for-sale housing options. For comparison 60% of homes in the City of Lone Tree are for-sale options.

Question: The City of Centennial has for-sale housing options that fit your income, needs, and lifestyle. Agree? Disagree? Tell us here.

Number of Responses Received (as of 6/15/2022): 57

Sample Responses:

“Centennial needs more rentals, more of a mix of housing at different price points and much more affordable housing, including low income housing options.”

“Less apartments and more options for people to buy in the community. Owners are going to have more at stake than someone looking for the cheapest rent for a few years.”

“We are newly retired, have good retirement income but still, if we had to move now, we would be lucky to find anything to fit our income and future aging needs. I don't even think this is an opinion…”

Upcoming Events

Housing Workshops

The second of three housing workshops is scheduled for August 9. More details will be shared here as they are available. 

City Community Events

Look for the Housing booth at Centennial’s summer socials and events at Centennial Center Park. 

Visit Community Events

Past Housing Presentations

Who's Involved?

In addition to open public outreach, four formal groups/types of groups will be convened over the next year to help guide the Housing Study process. Learn about who's involved and more here.

Past Housing Council Presentations:

Past Housing Working Group Presentations:

Past Housing Workshop Presentations

On May 17, the Housing Study held the first of three public workshops. This initial meeting provided an opportunity for neighborhood groups and interested community members to learn about the process and provide input on Centennial’s housing needs.

If you were unable to join the meeting, you can provide comments in our online tool through June 3, 2022. 

Links to online activity:

2021 Housing Research Efforts

City Council heard from a variety of local housing experts from across the Metro Denver Region. The following are some of the takeaways found here(PDF, 130KB).

South Metro Denver Housing Tour: Exploration through the South Metro Denver area of a variety of housing types and price points.