Colorado Residency Requirements

Colorado Residency Requirements

The reason why people are moving to Colorado is no longer a secret now! 

Stunning mountain ranges, picturesque nature, high-quality lifestyle, plentiful job opportunities, world-class outdoor recreations, beautiful weather, and a modest cost of living in Colorado are all that the state offers.  

Colorado Residency Requirements
Colorado Residency Requirements

If you have recently moved to the colorful state to settle there, then you have a lot of things in your cards. But firstly, take some time and have some thoughts to make an officially initiating Colorado residency to make an easier life later. 

What qualifies you as a resident of Colorado?

The qualification for Colorado residents requirements are as follows:

  • A person eagerly wanting to become a Colorado resident.
  • A person who had already built a house or purchased land in Colorado.
  • A person who is working permanently in Colorado owns a business in Colorado or is living in the state for 3 consecutive months. 

How long do you have to live in Colorado to be considered a resident?

You have to live in Colorado for 90 consecutive days, as a student, employee, or resident in Colorado to become its resident. 

[elementor-template id=”13252″]

Steps For Colorado Residency Requirements

In this article, we will get to know everything regarding the state of Colorado residency requirements and how to become a citizen of Colorado to avail of in-state tuition, driver’s license, hunting, and fishing permissions, and become taxpayer and cast votes.

1. How To Build A House in Colorado

Owning a house is a first and foremost step to establishing your domicile in Colorado. This will help you in proving Colorado residency for various other purposes. A person should be domiciled in Colorado for 12 months before getting entitled to in-state tuition.

How to Build a House in Colorado
How to Build a House in Colorado

Domicile will be his/her true, fixed, and own home with his/her mere physical presence in the state. If it doesn’t happen, your residency might get challenged by the state for tax and other purposes. 

Building a house in Colorado takes about 10 months depending on various factors. But to build a house and Colorado you need to consider these simple steps:

  • Create a financial plan for your new house
  • Search for a builder in your community
  • Arrange your finances and additional cash
  • Consider the local climate
  • Relate your lot with your floor plan
  • Take care of the permissions and inspections

2. Standard Forward Mail & Change of Address in Colorado

After moving to your new address the next step is to forward your mail to your new residence. A change of address (COA) along with USPS will be the first-class mail readdressed for a year. This step is necessary as soon as you change to a new address because it takes many days for the mail to get forwarded.

Standard Forward Mail & Change of Address in Colorado
Standard Forward Mail & Change of Address in Colorado

Your companies and businesses are the next to be followed up regarding the change of address. If the forwarding stops, you might not get your mail on time. 

Does Standard mail get forwarded to a new address?

After changing the address, the standard mail will get forwarded to your new address for some time (6 to 12 months).

Are mail forwarding and change of address the same?

Yes, mail forwarding and change of address are the same things. Changing your address along with USPS means you want your mail to reach your new address instead of the old address.  Afterward, you share your address with everyone to make sure that the mail is reaching the right place. 

3. How To Obtain A Colorado Driver’s License

After becoming a Colorado resident the next step is to transfer your driving license from the formerly resided state to Colorado within a month. 

This one-month deadline sets up once you clear these Colorado residency requirements for a driving license:

  • You have permanent employment in the state
  • You own or operate a business in Colorado
  • You have stayed consecutively in Colorado for 90 days

To transfer your driving license you need an online drivers license application.  Typically you don’t need to go through a written or driving test if you have a valid or expired license from another state.

How to Obtain a Colorado Driver's License
How to Obtain a Colorado Driver’s License

After feeling the application form you have to visit the Colorado DMV driver’s license office in person to verify the following documents:

  • A valid or expired driving license of a former state (expired for less than a year)
  • Identity proof or lawful presence (permanent resident card, unexpired passport card, or out-of-state drivers license)
  • Two proof forms of your currently staying Colorado address ( USPS change of address form, utility bill, mortgage papers, or first class mail from Colorado government agency)
  • Social security number proof ( 1099 form, W-2 form, or social security card)

[elementor-template id=”13242″]

4. Register A New Or Used Vehicle in Colorado

Your new or used car or any other vehicle must be registered in Colorado within 3 months of becoming a citizen of the state. To register your car in Colorado you need:

Register a New or Used Vehicle in Colorado
Register a New or Used Vehicle in Colorado
  • Submit a VIN verification form produced by a licensed car dealer in Colorado, a law enforcement officer in Colorado, or an emissions testing station, in Colorado.
  • Vehicle Insurance proof
  • Identity proof ( Colorado driver’s license, US passport, or out-of-state license)
  • Title in the vehicle owner’s name

How many days do you have to register a newly purchased vehicle in Colorado?

You have to register your new vehicle within 2 months of purchase or 3 months of becoming a Colorado resident. 

Can you register a new vehicle online in Colorado?

No, you can’t register a new vehicle online in Colorado. You have to visit the motor vehicle office of your locality in person to make the registration.

5. Register To Vote Online in Colorado

Leaving in Colorado permanently and not casting your vote is absolutely a bad idea. Every individual has the right to register their vote if having a permanent domicile. This will prove that you have Colorado residency and you want to make Colorado your permanent home.

Register to Vote Online in Colorado
Register to Vote Online in Colorado

After grabbing Colorado’s driver’s license, you can cast your vote online at or else if you want to complete your voter registration in person, fill up a voters registration form from the secretary of state website, Colorado, county clerk’s office or post office.

Registering a vote in person in Colorado can also happen in any government office that provides voting application forms, e.g.: the Colorado DMV driver’s license office, polling booths, public organizations, military recruiting officers, etc.

How to register to vote in Colorado?

You can register to vote in Colorado online voter registration through the mail or in person through the voter registration drive. 

  • Print the voter registration application form.
  • Fill it out.
  • Mail it to the nearest election office.

Other Options For Establishing Residency

There are various other ways to prove your intention to stay in Colorado as a permanent resident. Whenever your residency is challenged by someone are you need additional residency proof at some point, these below steps can be followed:

  • Inform the department of revenue of the previous state of your change of address to Colorado. 
  • Get a new bank account in Colorado
  • Acquire a dog license in your county
  • Acquire your new passport at your new address
  • Get your license transferred from the former state to Colorado
  • Admit your children to a public school in Colorado

1. Personal income Taxes in Colorado

An individual in Colorado is eligible for paying taxes if he or she is a resident of Colorado. Colorado residency rules for income tax purposes mean that you are a citizen of the state if you have:

  • A permanent home or property in Colorado
  • Live in Colorado for consecutively 90 days or more.
  • A permanent employment in the state.
  • Have your own business.

You can file income taxes in Colorado as a resident if you are getting taxable income. You mandatorily have to file an income tax return. A part-year resident is a person  who has not been in Colorado for the entire year.

Personal income taxes in Colorado
Personal income taxes in Colorado

These residents also have to complete the income tax return of that income subjected to Colorado income taxes. If you are a retailer, you need to collect Colorado sales tax license to file returns and repeal collected taxes monthly in a given time. 

What taxes do Colorado residents pay?

The taxes paid by the residents of Colorado in 2022 are as follows:

  • Income tax: 4.55%
  • State Sales tax: 2.90%
  • Local sales tax: 7.77%

How much income tax do you pay in Colorado?

The residents of Colorado paid an income tax of 4.55% in 2022. 

[elementor-template id=”13247″]

2. Colorado Residency Requirement For In-State Tuition

Colorado residency is provided to a student who has been domiciled to attend college or university in Colorado for 1 year consecutively to get in-state tuition. If the student is a minor, i.e. under 22 years, parents’ residency is required in that case.

Colorado Residency Requirement For In-State Tuition
Colorado Residency Requirement For In-State Tuition

You can also establish residency by enrolling in a professional degree or by getting married to a Colorado resident at the age of 22. To get Colorado residency for in-state tuition, students also need to provide many other proofs other than just living in the state for a year.

How long do you have to be a resident of Colorado to get in-state tuition?

Colorado State residency requirements need an abode of 12 consecutive months to become a resident of Colorado so that you can acquire in-state tuition. 

Who qualifies for Colorado in-state tuition?

Students who qualify for Colorado in-state tuition must:

  • Have the intention to make the state your permanent home.
  • Prove that you have many connections with the state, besides a Colorado driver’s license and permanent address.

3. Colorado Hunting License

People find Colorado as one of the ideal states and spent their best time to visit Colorado for skiing, and elk and fish hunting. Passionate hunters have to become Colorado residents to get a hunting license at lower fees. The cost of hunting animals in Colorado for residents and non-residents are as follows:

Hunting animalsResidentsNon-residents 
Elk hunting $56.88$516 – $688
Moose and bighorn sheep$314$2300

For hunting Colorado residency rules are somehow different than for other works. You need to stay in Colorado for six consecutive months before applying for a hunting license. Full-time students and military students are exempted from this rule.

Colorado Hunting License
Colorado Hunting License

What license do you need to hunt in Colorado?

Residents of Colorado have to get a resident hunting license along with other permits and licenses to hunt in  Colorado. 

How much does a non-resident hunting license cost in Colorado?

The annual non-resident hunting license in Colorado costs around $86.50.

How much is a deer hunting license in Colorado?

Residents with a resident hunting license have to pay $42.01, and non-residents with a hunting license must pay $420.23 to hunt a deer in Colorado.

Colorado Residency Requirements FAQs

What constitutes primary residence in Colorado?

A primary residence in Colorado is a home/place where a person’s existence is fixed. If absent, has the intention to return to that place, regardless of the period of the absence.

Why does Establishing Residency in Colorado Matter?

Establishing Colorado residency requirements matters to acquire in-state tuition as defined by Colorado’s law.

How do I establish residency in Colorado?

To establish the state of Colorado residency requirements you have to:

  • Stay in Colorado for 3 months without leaving the state.
  • Get permanent employment in Colorado.
  • Own a property in Colorado.
  • Own and manage a business in Colorado.


Now that you have figured out what Colorado residency requirements are, it’s time to pack your bags and move to Colorado. After relocating to Colorado, the first and foremost job will be to complete the residency requirements to have a comfortable living in the state.

Then follow all the steps one by one and acquire all the documents and licenses to make your life easier. 

[elementor-template id=”13257″]