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Old 08-24-2011, 01:52 PM
 
Location: Colorado Springs, Co
12 posts, read 21,900 times
Reputation: 13

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We have been to COS a couple times and really enjoyed the area. We went in the summer and winter, so we have somewhat of an idea what it's like. We haven't finalized our decision as we want to look into Fort Collins as well, but we haven't seen too many negatives about cos, but there are a few.

About us:
I'll be 40 next month and the other half is 32. We do not have kids, but we'd like to plan as if we might (undecided). We're moving from Menlo Park, ca area. We are both fiscal conservatives and somewhat socially liberal, but not fanatics by any means. We are both spiritual, but not religious, however, I was raised catholic and tend to hold those values.

We currently own our own business, but haven't decided if we're going to bring it with us, so a commute is not much of a concern.


What we like:
Privacy
Friendly people (I'm outgoing, my partner is not)
Great places to eat (not chains).
Outdoor activities (running, biking, hiking, wake-boarding, fishing and skiing etc)
Property for a garden and workshop.

What we don't like:
Home Owners Associates.
Lots of noise
Nosy neighbors
draconian property laws

One issue we noticed about Colorado in general is that there are a ton of chain restaurants.

The area we most liked when visiting is the Broadmoor. We realize the homes are expensive and wouldn't be looking at the higher priced homes, but some are affordable. Any suggestions on other area's besides the Broadmoor.
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Old 08-24-2011, 02:22 PM
 
808 posts, read 1,177,541 times
Reputation: 2074
The further north and east you go in town, the more likely you are to be surrounded by chain-restaurants. Many posters in this forum have their "pet" neighborhoods they champion and I'm guilty of that as I live in Skyway and have never encountered a more friendly, outdoorsey, non-snobby, politically mixed, safe, sensibly attractive neighborhood in my life (and I grew up in an area of $1+ Million homes which I came to find absurdly uneccesary). Skyway homes range from the high $100's up to $1 Million plus, and everywhere in between, depending on age, size, etc. The Broadmoor area, Old North End, etc. are certainly nice - if paying a premium to be in a particular neighborhood is your thing.

If you do end up with kids, the local school district (12) is consistently ranked as the top achieving district in Colorado.

For what its worth, I have a friend who moved to the Skyway area from Fort Collins several years ago and his observation is that living in the SW part of Colorado Springs is FAR superior to life in Fort Collins, but he'd prefer Fort Collins to the "rest" of Colorado Springs.
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Old 08-24-2011, 03:06 PM
 
Location: Colorado Springs, Co
12 posts, read 21,900 times
Reputation: 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by smdensbcs View Post
The further north and east you go in town, the more likely you are to be surrounded by chain-restaurants. Many posters in this forum have their "pet" neighborhoods they champion and I'm guilty of that as I live in Skyway and have never encountered a more friendly, outdoorsey, non-snobby, politically mixed, safe, sensibly attractive neighborhood in my life (and I grew up in an area of $1+ Million homes which I came to find absurdly uneccesary). Skyway homes range from the high $100's up to $1 Million plus, and everywhere in between, depending on age, size, etc. The Broadmoor area, Old North End, etc. are certainly nice - if paying a premium to be in a particular neighborhood is your thing.

If you do end up with kids, the local school district (12) is consistently ranked as the top achieving district in Colorado.

For what its worth, I have a friend who moved to the Skyway area from Fort Collins several years ago and his observation is that living in the SW part of Colorado Springs is FAR superior to life in Fort Collins, but he'd prefer Fort Collins to the "rest" of Colorado Springs.
Thanks for the information. Do you have zip codes for the skyway area?
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Old 08-24-2011, 07:37 PM
 
727 posts, read 1,136,442 times
Reputation: 766
My experience with a number of moves over a lot of years is that there are usually pretty good reasons why some neighborhoods are more expensive and therefore exact a premium than others. That's why I always try to provide some of the reasons I chose to live in my neighborhood (Old North End) when I recommend it to others in this forum. For us, the proximity to downtown and the college, the eclectic collection of older homes, the multitude of mature trees, the wide, quiet streets, and the more more moderate political attitudes, among other things, account for the 'premium' you pay to live here. It was worth it to us. My preferences will certainly differ from others. I've come to truly understand and appreciate the old maxim of real estate (location, location, location). I've lived in the exurbs to a major meto area, where i got a lot of house for my money, but also had traffic, long commutes, less desirable schools, etc. Result: less enjoyable experience. When I found and lived in highly desirable neighborhoods, I had to compromise either the size of the house for the money, or pay more for the privilege. In every case, the tradeoff was worth it. Bottom line, I've found that you usually get what you pay for.
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Old 08-24-2011, 09:41 PM
 
Location: Colorado Springs, Co
12 posts, read 21,900 times
Reputation: 13
Thanks Carrera32 and smdensbcs. I'm going to look more into skyway and old north end. I think I poked around skyway a little bit while I was there last, but not enough and I definitely missed old north end even though I stayed in old town the first time visiting.

Is it better to be in the flats or on the mountain with a view?
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Old 08-25-2011, 12:42 AM
 
727 posts, read 1,136,442 times
Reputation: 766
I enjoy being on the "flats" downtown and having a view of the mountains and the wonderful sunsets to the west. If you're in the foothills, your view is of the CS skyline (not that much there) and east to the plains. It really just boils down to personal preference. Take a ride up to Skyway and the other areas to the west of I-25 and then compare the view to that from downtown or Monument Valley Park to the west. You should also go up the hills at night, as the lights from the city are beautiful.
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Old 08-25-2011, 04:34 AM
 
16,438 posts, read 18,535,302 times
Reputation: 9490
Quote:
Originally Posted by DoubleIPA View Post
Thanks for the information. Do you have zip codes for the skyway area?
Also interested in the ZIP!
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Old 08-25-2011, 07:13 AM
 
71 posts, read 161,164 times
Reputation: 32
A Goggle search came up as 80906.
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Old 08-25-2011, 09:41 AM
 
Location: Colorado Springs, Co
12 posts, read 21,900 times
Reputation: 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bideshi View Post
Also interested in the ZIP!
If you go to realtor.com and you perform a search for Colorado Springs, you can then zoom in and see that area's of Skyway and Old North End.
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Old 08-25-2011, 01:39 PM
 
808 posts, read 1,177,541 times
Reputation: 2074
Quote:
Originally Posted by Carrera32 View Post
My experience with a number of moves over a lot of years is that there are usually pretty good reasons why some neighborhoods are more expensive and therefore exact a premium than others. That's why I always try to provide some of the reasons I chose to live in my neighborhood (Old North End) when I recommend it to others in this forum. For us, the proximity to downtown and the college, the eclectic collection of older homes, the multitude of mature trees, the wide, quiet streets, and the more more moderate political attitudes, among other things, account for the 'premium' you pay to live here. It was worth it to us. My preferences will certainly differ from others. I've come to truly understand and appreciate the old maxim of real estate (location, location, location). I've lived in the exurbs to a major meto area, where i got a lot of house for my money, but also had traffic, long commutes, less desirable schools, etc. Result: less enjoyable experience. When I found and lived in highly desirable neighborhoods, I had to compromise either the size of the house for the money, or pay more for the privilege. In every case, the tradeoff was worth it. Bottom line, I've found that you usually get what you pay for.
Well, you and I have somewhat different perspectives, as do most any two humans on this earth. I personally believe neighborhoods are similar to cars in the sense that beyond a certain point of "niceness" it just becomes pure, unnecessary indulgence which invariably leads to snobbery. As I previously stated, I grew up in a neighborhood of 1+ Million homes so I very much grasp the concept and have no desire to recreate that level of "snobbish exclusivity" for my own children (they'll be dealing with spoiled rich kids plenty even in our "non-Broadmoor" Westside neighborhood). I have no problem with anyone who wants to pay the premium, but I simply preferred to spend 50% less than what they told me I could "afford" on a house and live in a "perfectly nice" neighborhood in a "perfectly nice" 3500 square foot home than pay the extra $300-500K for the right to rub elbows with the "old money" folks, many of whom seem to be independently wealthy (i.e. don't work or, if they ever did, didn't really have to). Those folks need neighborhoods in which to congregate too and I don't begrudge them the right to do so!

As for schools, I'm having some trouble understanding the implicit suggestion that D11 schools (K-12) are "more desirable" than D12 schools which consistently rank #1 in Colorado.

Don't get me wrong, Old North End is a fine and pleasant neighborhood with mountain views and I understand you feel it's the "best place in town" because you chose to move there and pay the premium, but trust me life is not exactly "bad" up here in the foothills. The views of downtown, Garden of the Gods, and out to the horizon can actually be quite pleasant. Instead of walking downtown or to events at CC, we walk to the endless hiking trails. The trees are just as mature, the homes are just as eclectic (except those at the top of the hill), the political attitudes are just as moderate. And we have a neighborhood pool even friends from the Old North End are sometimes allowed to join!

If I misread or misperceived a tone of superiority, please forgive. I get that a big part of living in "certain neighborhoods," driving "certain cars," and sending kids to "certain private schools" is the right to feel superior, but for those of us who can afford to do these things but choose not to for practical reasons it can all seem a bit silly and pretentious. To the original poster, you can't go "wrong" in any of the neighborhoods being discussed (Broadmoor, Old North End, Skyway), it's simply a matter of personal preference, where you feel most comfortable, and what you're trying to accomplish. Welcome to town, if you do indeed make the move!
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