Welcome to Thistle Communities
Bienvenidos a las comunidades de Thistle. Para español, presione aquí.
A private, non-profit real estate company, Thistle Communities develops, manages and preserves quality, permanently affordable rental and ownership homes as well as market rate homes in Boulder County. Since our founding in 1989, we’ve created over 1,000 affordable homes.
New Phone System, One Number
Please note: Thistle has a new phone system that allows you to dial a staff member or office directly. Our main telephone number is now 303.443.0007. Once in the system, please listen to the directory to find the person you want to reach or speak to the receptionist to get transfered into a specific voice mail box. Thank you!
Resident Online Auto Payments are here
Thistle is now accepting resident rent payments online. Click on the red button (left) to go to Rent Cafe and sign in. Residents will be able to save time and money with this convenient method. All residential communities are now set up to pay online. Please contact us with your email and property address to get started. Thanks!
Preserving Housing Choices in Boulder County
As the discussion about the future of Boulder’s housing continues, often overlooked are the people. At Thistle, our residents and affordable homeowners are the center of our business of offering several choices on the housing ladder for low- to moderate-income families and individuals.
On any given day at Thistle’s Sage Court Apartments in central Boulder you will see people zipping around in wheelchairs, going about their daily business and experiencing all Boulder has to offer. Due to the shortage of affordable and accessible homes in Boulder, this 19-unit building for people with mobility impairments is a godsend to those who need this type of accommodation. At Sage Court, four of the 19 households have lived there for over 12 years; one household since 1997. John and Shelly Couch, residents since 2002, said, “We tell people all the time we’re so lucky to have Thistle as managers. They talk to you and work things out with you.”
Sage Court is just one rung on the ladder of housing opportunities which Thistle creates, manages and preserves in Boulder County. Our newest properties, Ledges on 29th and Lumine on 28th contain 130 workforce apartments which have been in high demand since we began leasing them last year. Bret, a self-employed financial planner who shares the apartment with his daughter, said, “Why did I choose Lumine? Value. There’s no way we could get a decent two-bedroom place in Boulder for the price. I have clients and friends in Boulder and it’s great that I won’t have to drive to Boulder from Lafayette every day.”
In addition to rental homes, Thistle offers homeownership possibilities for people who earn very low incomes at Mapleton Mobile Home Park (MMHP), the only mobile home park out of eight in the area that is permanently affordable, shown right. As Mapleton home buyer Sandra R. said, “It’s mine now, I bought it. I am glad you exist from people like me with low incomes so we can stay in Boulder and enjoy the beauty of Boulder.” A tour of MMHP shows much pride of ownership in a lovely setting with mature trees along the Goose Creek path and waterway.
Another rung on the homeownership ladder is the Community Land Trust program. Thistle owns the land under 103 single-family homes, townhomes and condos in Boulder County, homeowners own the structures and agree to sell them to buyers at restricted income levels to keep them permanently affordable. Andres and Julia Avila and their three children moved up the housing ladder from renting to owning a townhome in Boulder’s Buena Vista neighborhood. A key part of their home buying process was taking advantage of the PIE (Personal Investment Enterprise) program which matches participants’ savings at a rate of 4 to 1.
Essrea Cherin, a former Buena Vista homeowner, commented on the neighborhood, “It really struck me that a lot of my neighbors worked at the local university in staff positions, were teachers in public schools, or nurses, or fire fighters. The people who are homeowners here are serving the community of Boulder. Without programs like this, the people serving the community couldn’t afford to own.” Essrea purchased a market rate home after living in Buena Vista for nine years.
Interestingly, developing market rate homes is a critical part of Thistle’s program. In the past five years, Thistle has developed three neighborhoods containing 51 homes, 24 market rate and 27 affordable. The market rate homes of Rosewood, Yarmouth Way (shown left) and Toby’s Lane have helped cover the costs of building the affordable homes, while even as market rate their prices remained modest in the Boulder real estate. Buyers of the affordable homes include David Williams, a CU writing instructor; Kyle Littman, a non-profit administrator, his wife Mariah, a nurse, and their two children; and Patch Pollitt, a CDOT worker, wife Michelle and three children.
Kyle echoes the sentiments of many of our homeowners when he says: “We feel really lucky that Thistle Communities and the City of Boulder are working together to provide these opportunities. Living in Boulder is important to us. We ride our bikes, walk to work, trails, gym and grocery store. I’d like people to know there are options in Boulder.”
Boulder Office, 6000 Spine Road #101, Boulder, CO 80301 303.443.0007