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Old 07-30-2017, 02:54 PM
 
37 posts, read 19,351 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SkyDog77 View Post
If you're pulling in $200K plus, you can afford much more house than you are targeting. You're just going to need to reevaluate your savings goals....
I would suggest renting out here first for a year and deciding if it's for you.
And both of those may be the case. We may rent for a year to get a feel for the area. Also I know that the real estate taxes are lower out there (thereby allowing for more house). Also we tend to be conservative with finances that allows us to eat out more than normal.

If I use the estimates on Zillow, with $145k and $1,250 a month in debt payments we could afford $375k and using a payment of $2,500 per month it says around $470k.
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Old 07-30-2017, 02:55 PM
 
Location: Denver CO
20,997 posts, read 11,624,951 times
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Colorado is a great place to raise a family in many ways. But your desired budget is out of synch with the Denver metro area, where the average sold price for a single family home is about $500,000. That's AVERAGE, not high end. And to stay within a 30ish minute drive of your workplace keeps you in the Denver metro, plus as a nurse, the best job opportunities for your wife will be in Denver as well, so you probably don't want to get too far out esp. with her hesitation about driving in the snow.

It sounds like you haven't been here yet to interview? You'll need to drive around and see things for yourself. Centennial is by no means a "big city" - more of a sprawling suburb with a bunch of industrial parks and retail on the main thoroughfares and lots of open space. Not a small town but definitely not like living in a city like Chicago.
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Old 07-30-2017, 03:04 PM
 
37 posts, read 19,351 times
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Default Centennial

Quote:
Originally Posted by emm74 View Post
It sounds like you haven't been here yet to interview? You'll need to drive around and see things for yourself. Centennial is by no means a "big city" - more of a sprawling suburb with a bunch of industrial parks and retail on the main thoroughfares and lots of open space. Not a small town but definitely not like living in a city like Chicago.
That is correct and we will definitely do that once we get to that point (which is likely the next step). Are you familiar with the Naperville / Downers Grove areas in the Chicago area? Would you say Centennial is more like those areas? Looking at City Data and Usa.com those cities seem very similar.
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Old 07-30-2017, 04:58 PM
 
Location: Washington Park, Denver
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fxguy1 View Post
And both of those may be the case. We may rent for a year to get a feel for the area. Also I know that the real estate taxes are lower out there (thereby allowing for more house). Also we tend to be conservative with finances that allows us to eat out more than normal.

If I use the estimates on Zillow, with $145k and $1,250 a month in debt payments we could afford $375k and using a payment of $2,500 per month it says around $470k.
Realistically you are going to be around $500K for what you want.

It sounds like an awesome opportunity and one you should definitely explore. I have a 6 year old and 3 year old and think this a great place to raise a family.

If the job comes through, renting up front and keeping your home in IL for a year might give you peace of mind that you've made the right decision.

I have spent a bit of time in the Chicago burbs. I don't think Denver's burbs share a lot with them in terms of feel. For one thing, Denver's suburbs are much closer to downtown so our burbs didn't develop their own city centers the way many in Chicago have. They are starting to now that traffic and population have grown, but it's different here still.

Come visit! Southwest and United have regular flights that aren't very expensive.
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Old 07-30-2017, 05:29 PM
 
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There are a couple of modest sized houses listed in Conifer with near or a full acre. https://www.zillow.com/homes/for_sal...omePageTab=buy
$375-400 k. Average price is Bailey is supposedly $300k but with land I dunno. I think you might find what you want between Conifer and Bailey. Looking less likely closer in, though you could check Morrison.




Castle Rock OUTSKIRTS are worth look.
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Old 07-30-2017, 05:58 PM
 
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What about the people compared to the Midwest/Chicago? Friendly? Standoffish? In general, I realize there's always going to be that one person who isn't like everyone else good or bad.
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Old 07-30-2017, 09:07 PM
 
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Centennial is not a city as you would traditionally think of one. It was unincorporated areas of different counties that found the commercial land near them being snapped up by tax hungry cities (I'm talking to you Greenwood Village) leaving the unincorporated areas with no tax basis to pay for services like road upkeep, police and fire. In 2001 a bunch of the unincorporated areas incorporated as Centennial. If you look at the map on-line it is full of holes and irregular borders. Individual property owners could opt in or out. They had a goal of keeping property taxes low. When you look at them and compare them with where you are now you will be astounded. The western part is now a very popular area to live because rail came through there first and values rose with the ability to easily get to the city via light rail.

You will find the people friendly. It has been a really long time since I lived in Naperville but it my (admittedly very long ago memory) both places were nice to live. I also used to live in Centennial and was there for the vote to incorporate.

A couple of things you need to pay attention to here when buying when you are coming from another area of the country.
#1) Water is the most important thing to verify when buying a house. Where is the water from? Is it renewable surface rights? Example Denver Water is senior renewable surface rights. Is it non-renewing water from the fast depleting aquifer? Expect large bills in the future to pay to get rights or lots of water restrictions. You will have restrictions and high water bills no matter what but you absolutely want to be in a home with access to good clean water. It isn't unheard of for homes to be on private water systems where the water isn't drinkable and everyone has to truck in bottled water. It also isn't unheard of for there to be stinky water blooms that make the water undrinkable if the reservoir source gets algae blooms. The non-renewing aquifer was 100 years when I moved here but then was 35 or 50 yrs left or ??? No one really knows when it will run out.

#2) Treed areas have a tendency to burn down. The longer since a burn (the bigger the trees) the greater the chances it will eventually go. We have lots of forest fires. Being in a development where there is good access for firefighters is a bonus. Check if you go out in the woods if the insurance will insure your home, whether you need to cut down all the trees for a fire break and what the cost to insure is.

#3) Check on the homes high speed internet access. Not everyone has it. Check for cell phone service. Even in Denver metro not all areas are good coverage.

#4) Take the isolation seriously. Realtors love foothills buyers. They are good for a number of sales. 3 if you are from out of state (buy in foothills, sell in foothills, buy in metro area) and 4 if they are local (sell in metro area, buy in foothills, sell in foothills, buy in metro area). The winter snows can also be significantly worse in the foothills.

#5) If you buy new construction be aware that we have expansive soils and that can wreck your foundation. Homes over 5 years old are thought to have been time tested but if someone changes the water run off near the house problems can still crop up.

Just a heads up. Neither of your potential addresses are in Englewood. They are both in the Denver Tech Center area of Centennial CO. One is probably carrying an Englewood address because it is on a piece of land where the owner opted not to incorporate with Centennial but stayed unincorporated. Those areas had Englewood addresses but had nothing to do with nor were they the least bit close to the actual city of Englewood. They were simply served by that post office when it was an unincorporated area. So the area your job is near is the DTC in Centennial.

There are loads of very nice family friendly areas near the DTC. It was plopped down into the middle of existing suburbs. The schools in that area are Cherry Creek school system and very good. You practically won the lottery of nice places to live right there. It would be foolish to set yourself up with a long commute when so many good neighborhoods are right there.
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Old 07-30-2017, 09:30 PM
 
Location: Washington Park, Denver
6,904 posts, read 6,496,831 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mic111 View Post
Centennial is not a city as you would traditionally think of one. It was unincorporated areas of different counties that found the commercial land near them being snapped up by tax hungry cities (I'm talking to you Greenwood Village) leaving the unincorporated areas with no tax basis to pay for services like road upkeep, police and fire. In 2001 a bunch of the unincorporated areas incorporated as Centennial. If you look at the map on-line it is full of holes and irregular borders. Individual property owners could opt in or out. They had a goal of keeping property taxes low. When you look at them and compare them with where you are now you will be astounded. The western part is now a very popular area to live because rail came through there first and values rose with the ability to easily get to the city via light rail.

You will find the people friendly. It has been a really long time since I lived in Naperville but it my (admittedly very long ago memory) both places were nice to live. I also used to live in Centennial and was there for the vote to incorporate.

A couple of things you need to pay attention to here when buying when you are coming from another area of the country.
#1) Water is the most important thing to verify when buying a house. Where is the water from? Is it renewable surface rights? Example Denver Water is senior renewable surface rights. Is it non-renewing water from the fast depleting aquifer? Expect large bills in the future to pay to get rights or lots of water restrictions. You will have restrictions and high water bills no matter what but you absolutely want to be in a home with access to good clean water. It isn't unheard of for homes to be on private water systems where the water isn't drinkable and everyone has to truck in bottled water. It also isn't unheard of for there to be stinky water blooms that make the water undrinkable if the reservoir source gets algae blooms. The non-renewing aquifer was 100 years when I moved here but then was 35 or 50 yrs left or ??? No one really knows when it will run out.

#2) Treed areas have a tendency to burn down. The longer since a burn (the bigger the trees) the greater the chances it will eventually go. We have lots of forest fires. Being in a development where there is good access for firefighters is a bonus. Check if you go out in the woods if the insurance will insure your home, whether you need to cut down all the trees for a fire break and what the cost to insure is.

#3) Check on the homes high speed internet access. Not everyone has it. Check for cell phone service. Even in Denver metro not all areas are good coverage.

#4) Take the isolation seriously. Realtors love foothills buyers. They are good for a number of sales. 3 if you are from out of state (buy in foothills, sell in foothills, buy in metro area) and 4 if they are local (sell in metro area, buy in foothills, sell in foothills, buy in metro area). The winter snows can also be significantly worse in the foothills.

#5) If you buy new construction be aware that we have expansive soils and that can wreck your foundation. Homes over 5 years old are thought to have been time tested but if someone changes the water run off near the house problems can still crop up.

Just a heads up. Neither of your potential addresses are in Englewood. They are both in the Denver Tech Center area of Centennial CO. One is probably carrying an Englewood address because it is on a piece of land where the owner opted not to incorporate with Centennial but stayed unincorporated. Those areas had Englewood addresses but had nothing to do with nor were they the least bit close to the actual city of Englewood. They were simply served by that post office when it was an unincorporated area. So the area your job is near is the DTC in Centennial.

There are loads of very nice family friendly areas near the DTC. It was plopped down into the middle of existing suburbs. The schools in that area are Cherry Creek school system and very good. You practically won the lottery of nice places to live right there. It would be foolish to set yourself up with a long commute when so many good neighborhoods are right there.
This is a great post. The only thing I would really add is that the water sourcing issue is a much bigger deal if you decide to buy in the foothills/mountains.
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Old 07-31-2017, 07:57 AM
 
37 posts, read 19,351 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mic111 View Post
You will find the people friendly.

Good to know. We currently live in a subdivision where we've only know our next door neighbors in the last 2-3 years and we've all been here for 10 years! Also our immediate neighbor constantly gives us dirty looks for the state of our yard. We have kids yes, but I don't have time to mow my lawn 3 times a week like he does (he's retired). Its not the most manicured exterior by far but by no means is it trash either.


Quote:
Originally Posted by mic111 View Post
#1) Water is the most important thing to verify when buying a house. Where is the water from? Is it renewable surface rights? Example Denver Water is senior renewable surface rights. Is it non-renewing water from the fast depleting aquifer?

What do you mean by renewable surface rights vs non-renewable aquifer? More the surface rights, never quite heard that before. We have a good aquifer in Champaign that's really clean.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mic111 View Post
#2) Treed areas have a tendency to burn down.
Good point.


Quote:
Originally Posted by mic111 View Post
#3) Check on the homes high speed internet access. Not everyone has it. Check for cell phone service. Even in Denver metro not all areas are good coverage.

This. So this. I have to have high speed internet access. We currently have Verizon for our cell phone service. Anything on their coverage out that way?

Quote:
Originally Posted by mic111 View Post
#4) Take the isolation seriously. Realtors love foothills buyers. They are good for a number of sales. 3 if you are from out of state (buy in foothills, sell in foothills, buy in metro area)
Another good point. And reason to consider renting for a while before we decide to buy.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mic111 View Post
#5) If you buy new construction be aware that we have expansive soils and that can wreck your foundation. Homes over 5 years old are thought to have been time tested but if someone changes the water run off near the house problems can still crop up.
Not too big a concern as we are looking at existing homes that have been around 10+ years typically.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mic111 View Post
There are loads of very nice family friendly areas near the DTC. It was plopped down into the middle of existing suburbs. The schools in that area are Cherry Creek school system and very good. You practically won the lottery of nice places to live right there. It would be foolish to set yourself up with a long commute when so many good neighborhoods are right there.
Thank you for your reply! Very informative and really makes me feel better about the possible move. Also makes me feel that Centennial would be a very nice place to live and that we could find something in that area reasonably. How are the lots / yards in that area? Any suggestions on particular subdivisions?


Thanks again!
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Old 07-31-2017, 09:22 AM
 
2,514 posts, read 3,487,165 times
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You may want to look for a home in a non-HOA neighborhood where the yards are similarly kept to the way you keep yours. You certainly don't want to move in and have a formally pristine yard suddenly become the local eye sore. Not saying it would but there are lots of non-HOA neighborhoods to choose from. You are less likely to get the type of people who care about their neighbors yard in that type of neighborhood.

No worries on mowing 3 times per week. We don't get enough water for that. You can get away with once every two weeks if you keep your lawn underwatered and just this side of dormancy or slightly not quite dead.

What I meant by friendly is that we don't have the Seattle freeze or the NYC don't make eye contact vibe. Generally people will say hi and stop to chat a bit, wave to each other going by, that sort of thing.

In terms of water systems here are two examples for you to review.
Denver water: "The sources of Denver's water are primarily runoff from snowmelt high in the Rocky Mountains. The portion of the South Platte River that runs through the metro area is not a source for Denver Water."
https://www.denverwater.org/your-wat...r-quality-faqs
This is good. The source is renewable.

Castle Rock water: "Today, a large quantity (approximately 85 percent) of the Town's annual water supply comes from nonrenewable Denver Basin groundwater while only a small portion (approximately 15 percent) comes from renewable supplies along Plum Creek. The nonrenewable Denver Basin groundwater won’t last forever, so it’s important that we continue moving to a renewable water supply.
"
Castle Rock Water | Castle Rock, CO - Official Website

There are alot of systems off the non-renewable aquifer in the south Denver area. They are all trying to get access to renewable sources. There is not enough to go around. There are alot of water systems in between these two. For example Ken Caryl gets it's water from Denver Water so they are OK. But others are off small or even other large systems off the non-renewing aquifer.

Verizon generally has very good coverage. For example I get it just fine. But there are new houses in our area that don't get any coverage at all. When you are looking at houses take your cell phone out and see if you can get connectivity. Have your realtor verify the type of high speed data you want, you want wired DSL or cable, you do not want satellite. Put it as a condition of the purchase contract that it be available so no one can slip it by you if they make a mistake or fib.

You can find larger lots or ones with nice privacy in the older neighborhoods. My husband grew up in a 1960s house in Littleton on a 3/4 acre with loads of trees. My old house, built in the 1970s, had lots arranged like the teeth on a zipper. The homes looked out between the two homes behind. Since everyone planted trees in their back corners all you saw was trees when you looked out. They were also on a hill. On the west side of my house where the windows were I had a mountain view. On the garage side the next house was raised above mine.

The inventory is so low right now that it is hard to suggest subdivisions because in the end you will only have a handful to look at across all the subdivisions. One of the best values right in your work's area is Walnut Hills. Any of the adjacent subdivisions around there are very nice but probably slightly higher priced. I used to live in Heritage Place. I also like Cherry Knolls if you want to go a bit further west. But what I like, trails/walking paths, and walk-able access to restaurants, grocery store etc may not be what you are looking for. You might like Highlands Ranch. Things are often a bit cheaper out there but it is a big sprawling suburban development and feels like it. Also it is Douglas County Schools and you would have to decide if you are OK with that. I was going to mention Acres Green. It was a cheaper neighborhood when built but had larger lots. Very good location to your work. But also Douglas County Schools. The older/smaller neighborhoods have access to more amenities and generally have more characters. Also feel a little more intimate. These are generally Cherry Creek School District.

Listings in neighborhoods I mentioned:
Walnut Hills
6971 S Uinta Street, Centennial, CO 80112 | MLS 4084256 | Listing Information
Heritage Place
6944 E Euclid Place, Centennial, CO 80111 | MLS 2537196 | Listing Information
Nothing in Cherry Knolls right now but here is one nearby at Arapaho Estates
3343 E Euclid Place, Centennial, CO 80121 | MLS 4424505 | Listing Information

This one seems to have a nice yard and be in your price range. To me the location looks very good also.
6525 S Cherry Way, Centennial, CO 80121 | MLS 3189754 | Listing Information

Here is on on a quarter acre in your price range.
http://www.recolorado.com/homes-for-...0121-209355846

1/3 of an acre, vintage style home to save some money. Walking distance to Trader Joes, The Streets of Southglenn (grocery/shopping) and Highline Canal/trail system.
http://www.recolorado.com/homes-for-...0121-210010425

Last edited by mic111; 07-31-2017 at 09:59 AM..
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