In an effort to find necessary housing for Aspen Snowmass’ 4,000+ seasonal employees, Aspen Skiing Co. is utilizing their ‘Tenants For Turns’ program for a second year in a row.
‘Tenants For Turns’ offers a free season pass to homeowners in the Roaring Fork Valley that lease to Aspen employees.
Essentially, homeowners rent a room, a unit, or a guest house to Aspen Skiing Co. employees, and receive free skiing in return.
“In response to the escalating housing crisis in the Roaring Fork Valley, Aspen Skiing Company is re-launching the Tenants for Turns program for the 2022-23 season.
The program offers incentives to homeowners willing to rent a unit, a guest house, an ADU, a mother-in-law unit or even an extra bedroom to an Aspen Snowmass employee.
The Tenants for Turns program is valid for new leases that take effect after October 1, 2022 and run through the ski season.”
^The Hub at Willits is a 43-unit, 150-bed employee housing building constructed by Aspen Skiing Co. in 2021.
Jim Laing, chief human resources officer at Aspen Skiing Co. spoke with the Aspen Times about last year’s program:
“We were very pleased with how the community embraced the program last year. Almost 40 employees were able to find a room,”
Roaring Fork Valley homeowners have to apply to be considered. You can go here to download and fill out the application.
It seems like an okay idea in theory, but I’m a little bit skeptical. Aspen Skiing Co. does not set any parameters for rent, and only says:
“We recommend rentals be within the range of $500 and $900 per month per individual per bedroom or lower, plus utilities,”
So, what’s keeping a landlord from charging a buttload of money for a tiny room that a seasonal employee can barely afford? Well, nothing, I guess.
The problem is that seasonal employees have very limited options to begin with. If they see an opportunity for a decent room at a lavish house in the valley for $1,500/month as their only option, they’re going to take it.
I love the idea of Aspen thinking outside of the box to find housing for their employees, but they need to implement rent price restrictions in order for it to be truly effective for their seasonal workers.
I’m very skeptical that the rich homeowners in the area won’t try to milk these poor resort employees for everything they got.
I hope that’s not the case, but I don’t think a season pass (even though it’s worth more than $2,000) is enough to encourage a rich person to open their home up to a broke stranger at a reasonable rate.
Again, I hope I’m wrong. I hope that even more homeowners welcome seasonal employees into their homes this year at an affordable price.
That would be the feel-good story that the entire ski industry needs.
Header Image Credit: Aspen Skiing Co.