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Old 06-26-2012, 01:57 AM
 
65 posts, read 202,517 times
Reputation: 89

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Hello!

I'm a born and raised Oklahoman, yet I never felt "at home" here. I hate heat, love snow and winter, am bored with our local activities, and I still call our "mountains" hills. I married a Kiowa-Comanche woman, so naturally we have been attached even more to the Red Earth state. However, my wife too has grown bored with Oklahoma and is willing to move soon. Colorado is one of our top choices because its still a quick flight back home to family, yet it *seems* to offer us everything we are after.

About us: I support our family on my income alone. I have 10 years in the Software development field. I plan on finishing my Bachelor's in Mathematics (Minor is Finance) next year. My wife is a stay at home mom, so we are not concerned with finding her a job. It would be good if she can easily meet friendly people so she doesn't feel alone.

We have a 5 year old daughter and a baby boy on the way. We are coming from a small suburb on the outskirts of OKC called Mustang. It has all the immediate wants and needs (fast food, Walmart, Lowes,etc) without the hustle and bustle of being a "work town". Its relatively quiet, which we like. We currently live on an acre, which is just enough land for us. Hate heat and heavy humidity. Love the cold, or at least just a true Fall feel (crisp days in October come to mind). So.......

1) What do we need to know about living in Colorado in general, coming from Oklahoma? Politics, crime, types of people, etc.
2) Where are some good places for us to look at to live?


Our main concerns would be close enough to IT companies to commute; small town feels similiar to what we have now; having an acre or two if possible; good community and schools overall. We would also like to be close enough to view the Rockies and partake in mountain activities, but that's not a deal breaker.

I appreciate any assistance in this. I am really hoping to make a trip out to Colorado soon to scout out some areas, so please point me in the right direction!
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Old 06-26-2012, 03:29 AM
 
Location: Everywhere and Nowhere
14,131 posts, read 26,268,254 times
Reputation: 6815
Would recommend you go to the second sticky on here and read through the various threads referenced. Your very general question's been asked and answered innumerable times.
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Old 06-26-2012, 06:49 AM
 
Location: Canon City, Colorado
1,331 posts, read 4,416,567 times
Reputation: 675
I suggest Canon City!!! Acreage is very reasonable and has everything you need...nice community, etc.
You could look into an IT job with the Department Of Corrections (State of Federal) Or...a short commute to Colo. Spgs. for IT jobs...( my neice and many make the commute everyday!!)
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Old 06-26-2012, 08:10 AM
 
8,317 posts, read 25,111,186 times
Reputation: 9066
The big shock you will receive is in living costs. Oklahoma consistently ranks as one of the lowest living cost states in the United States. Depending on the study, Colorado ranks around 30th lowest (in other words, 29 other states have lower average living costs). Ignore the posts from people who transplanted to Colorado who crow about Colorado's low living costs. Most of them come from the high cost-of-living states like California, New York, Illinois, etc. Colorado seems like a bargain to them, but it probably won't to you--especially if you intend to be a one-earner household. That's a feat relatively few Colorado families can achieve.

Here is a link to a state-by-state living cost study. Obvioulsy, living costs can vary considerably within a state, but it's a pretty good guide:

http://www.missourieconomy.org/indic...ving/index.stm

Last edited by jazzlover; 06-26-2012 at 09:03 AM..
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Old 06-26-2012, 08:43 AM
 
2,438 posts, read 3,268,167 times
Reputation: 4874
Housing budget? I would love to help but without a housing budget I don't know what suggestions to make.
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Old 06-26-2012, 09:06 AM
Status: "Not politically correct" (set 3 days ago)
 
Location: Western Colorado
10,548 posts, read 11,646,107 times
Reputation: 24218
Where in Colorado? Lots of totally different areas here. BTW I moved here from northwest Arkansas and I thought that place was expensive. Get ready for sticker shock if you move here.

Visit first, in summer and in the dead of winter. Good luck to you.
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Old 06-26-2012, 10:28 AM
 
Location: Pueblo - Colorado's Second City
12,102 posts, read 20,360,320 times
Reputation: 4132
It depends where you live in Colorado as some places can be very expensive and some places can be very inexpensive. For example Boulder is on the more expensive side where Pueblo is one of the least expensive cities to live in not only the state but the nation. Overall I think you would like Colorado you just need to come out and visit and see what city appeals to your family.
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Old 06-26-2012, 11:05 AM
 
9,817 posts, read 19,029,157 times
Reputation: 7541
Quote:
Originally Posted by DrinkGreen View Post
Hello!

I'm a born and raised Oklahoman, yet I never felt "at home" here. I hate heat, love snow and winter, am bored with our local activities, and I still call our "mountains" hills. I married a Kiowa-Comanche woman, so naturally we have been attached even more to the Red Earth state. However, my wife too has grown bored with Oklahoma and is willing to move soon. Colorado is one of our top choices because its still a quick flight back home to family, yet it *seems* to offer us everything we are after.

About us: I support our family on my income alone. I have 10 years in the Software development field. I plan on finishing my Bachelor's in Mathematics (Minor is Finance) next year. My wife is a stay at home mom, so we are not concerned with finding her a job. It would be good if she can easily meet friendly people so she doesn't feel alone.

We have a 5 year old daughter and a baby boy on the way. We are coming from a small suburb on the outskirts of OKC called Mustang. It has all the immediate wants and needs (fast food, Walmart, Lowes,etc) without the hustle and bustle of being a "work town". Its relatively quiet, which we like. We currently live on an acre, which is just enough land for us. Hate heat and heavy humidity. Love the cold, or at least just a true Fall feel (crisp days in October come to mind). So.......

1) What do we need to know about living in Colorado in general, coming from Oklahoma? Politics, crime, types of people, etc.
2) Where are some good places for us to look at to live?


Our main concerns would be close enough to IT companies to commute; small town feels similiar to what we have now; having an acre or two if possible; good community and schools overall. We would also like to be close enough to view the Rockies and partake in mountain activities, but that's not a deal breaker.

I appreciate any assistance in this. I am really hoping to make a trip out to Colorado soon to scout out some areas, so please point me in the right direction!
Other than being colder with a longer winter season and being more expensive, Colorado will not be much different than Oklahoma for you most likely(I have lived in OK myself). Most likely you'll be living in or around the major metro areas on I-25 corridor on prairie flatland not too far removed from what land looks like around OKC.

Most of the population in Colorado lives in what I termed the "Front Range Population Blob" along the I-25 corridor from Pueblo to Ft. Collins. East of there is prairie and scrubland with some small agriculture towns and west of that is the mountains and high desert with resort or old mining towns that are not large in size. The only significant metro area outside of the I-25 corridor is Grand Junction with around 100K people in the local area and that is a 4 hour drive from Denver on the Utah border.

Since most jobs are on that I-25 corridor, what I always recommend is find the best job you can first, then locate housing within 20-30 minutes drive at most. To me along that corridor, suburban living is suburban living and none of the suburbs I find are that radically different from one another. Part of that is due to lack of age, as most of what you see in Colorado is relatively new as the state doubled in population in a few decades. So as a result you get all the standard big box retail and tract home development that has been common in recent times.
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Old 06-26-2012, 12:08 PM
 
65 posts, read 202,517 times
Reputation: 89
Quote:
The big shock you will receive is in living costs. Oklahoma consistently ranks as one of the lowest living cost states in the United States. Depending on the study, Colorado ranks around 30th lowest
Oklahoma also usually ranks lowest in average starting salaries for jobs. I'm aware of the higher living cost in Colorado, but do you think that the IT industry pays better in Colorado than Oklahoma? If so, how much better?

Quote:
Housing budget? I would love to help but without a housing budget I don't know what suggestions to make.
Its hard to figure out a budget if the living costs and average payscales are different. I make $85,000 now here in Oklahoma. I hope that the IT jobs in Colorado will be paying out a bit more than here, to cover the living costs. Right now,at my current salary, we are looking at a new house here in Oklahoma that costs $285,000 that is 2500sf.

Quote:
Where in Colorado? Lots of totally different areas here.
I want to be as close to the mountains as possible, without a constant threat of the road being snowed in and unable to get to emergency services if needed. Also, close enough to any IT Industry cities that I can commute to.
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Old 06-26-2012, 03:16 PM
 
Location: Colorado Springs, CO
3,334 posts, read 5,119,050 times
Reputation: 2028
Ha haits! As to IT jobs, well that is going to be very dependent on where you live. I live in Colorado Springs, work in IT (systems engineer), my family is from Oklahoma, and ironically am Comanche (Kerchee). In the Springs, there are a lot of IT jobs, however, the vast majority are with the defense contractors supporting the four military bases here. If you do not possess a security clearance, while not impossible, it makes thing more difficult. There are some commercial IT jobs, but not nearly as many as with the defense contractors. With your experience in software development, commanding a salary similar to what you are making is certainly possible. I cannot say definitively that Colorado Springs would pay any better than OKC. I honestly don't know.

Housing: you can easily get in to a 2500 sq ft home in Colorado Springs for less than what you are talking about in OK. Location, of course, will dictate price.

Weather: in the Springs, you don't have to concern yourself with being snowed in that much. In the 12 years I've lived here, I've only experienced maybe two or three really heavy snows that made me say, "I better stay home today." For the most part if it snows, it melts by the afternoon or next day latest.

Commuting: there are several neighborhoods and smaller cities near the Springs and up in the mountains that folk live in and commute to work - Woodland Park, Green Mountain Falls, Chipita Park and Manitou Springs are the closest. Subdivisions such as you describe include Cedar Ridge, Mountain Shadows and Rockrimmon. Do be aware, though, that those mentioned are also in danger right now because of the forest fire currently blazing - the Waldo Canyon Fire.

Native community: Your wife might be interested in this. The Native community in Colorado Springs is really small. I don't know if ya'll are powwow people or not, but there are dances here, but they are not what you would be used to in OK. They are better than nothing, but I really prefer to go back to Lawton for dances. There are more up in Denver adn Ft Collins than here, but they tend to have a more Northern flavor to them. There is a really good southern drum that comes out of Denver: Waterbird. That drum is led by one of the Cozads and are quite good. Since she's Kiowa, she'll know who they are. Being a Southern Straight Dancer myself, I only go to dances where they or another southern drum are at. I don't like dancing to Northern drums. We do have an Indian Center here in the Springs. It's okay, but Denver has a much better one with more activities and more NDNs, if you get my meaning. The Denver Native community is larger for sure. A lot of Lakotas, Northern Cheyenne, Navajos and a sprinkling of others. There are the Utes down in the SW corner of the state and they put on a big dance there every year. Still, I find the need to get back to OK at least once a year to get my Numunu fix.

Personally, I love Colorado Springs, but since you are considering state-wide, folks from the the other cities will have to chime in on jobs, homes and all that.

Last edited by Fullback32; 06-26-2012 at 03:35 PM..
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