Crisis at Rocky Mountain Mutual Housing Association




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The Founding Of The Mutual

The idea of the Mutual began in 1991 when a Denver attorney, George Callaghan, approached a local banker, Gregory Limbah, about attending a conference on affordable housing in Estes Park, Colorado. The purpose of the conference was to bring together low-income housing advocates from both the local government and business communities to explore the concept of “mutual housing”.

The idea was based on a European model, which provided permanent housing to anyone who was motivated to meet the obligations and challenges associated with home ownership. A defining characteristic of these “mutual” communities was direct resident involvement in the management and decisions affecting the community. The envisioned result of this involvement was a sense of “pride of ownership” for the residents of each community which would engender stability, cooperation, and understanding amongst the residents resulting in a propitious living environment.

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At the time of the conference, Limbah was already involved with the affordable housing community. He was serving as the chairman of the Board of Directors of the Denver Highlands Chapter of Neighborhood Housing Services (NHS), a branch of the Neighborhood Reinvestment Corporation (now formally known as Neighbor Works America). Considering his involvement, experience, and enthusiasm for the cause of affordable housing, Limbah gathered an enterprising group of advocates to make the idea of “mutual housing” a reality in Colorado.

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