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Thread summary:

Moving to Colorado: housing, horse property for sale, job market, realtor, real estate.

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Old 12-22-2006, 01:02 PM
 
Location: Cody WY Off Of Belfry Hwy
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...would be best?

My criteria:


1. Good "blue collar" job market (industrial mechanic type work)
2. Reasonable housing costs (1 acre of land or more for under 200K)
3. Horse property type area (we have 3 horses)
4. Low heat in the summer (under 90 degrees)
5. Low (illegal) immigrant population

Don't mind commuting to work. Would like an area less windy than Wyoming. Wyoming was my first choice, but some folks recommended checking out CO.
It will likely be just my wife and I when we move, but our kids who will be 16+ when we finally move (5 to 7 yrs) may go with us. Not really looking for the "Big City" thing, but more of the small town thing for living. Don't mind a reasonable commute to the big city for work though, just don't want to live in it.
Was thinking along the lines of Durango, Loveland, Ft. Collins.....
Any other recommendations?

Thanks, John
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Old 12-23-2006, 12:07 AM
 
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
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Loveland (Masonville) was home for 26 yrs, and it (was) really great, (banana Belt) but now crowded in expensive. But still very nice, people, services, community, schools, proximity, jobs... Property alone will be $200k, then you need a teepee...I just looked at an empty 1.5 acre spot for $365k, but it was pretty prime (between Loveland and Ft Collins)

It is gonna be tough to find an economical spot in Colo, western side will be better, (excluding the nice spots, Glenwood, Durango, Steamboat) Maybe Grand Junction, or Gunnison if you need a job, otherwise a remote town will do. I would be concerned about future taxation in Colo. That is where Wy shines, and it is a lot less 'trendy' (expensive) for CO commuting there is Wellington (N of FtC, but it is windy and arrid, much like wy (of course, since it is next door)

Colorado favorites for me (east side = Estes Park, anytime except summer...) otherwise Loveland, West side = Grand Lake

How about forgetting the job thing and finding the best place with low costs of living and taxes and FRIENDLY let me know, I'm looking for that

Check 'Loopnet' for listings, that's where I post mine, and find others
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Old 12-23-2006, 07:38 AM
 
Location: Cody WY Off Of Belfry Hwy
737 posts, read 2,839,393 times
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If all works out right, and the market goes back up here (Southern CA.) in the next 5 or 6 years, but I buy a house there now, then hopefully, when I am ready to make the move, and sell here, I will be able to pay off the house there, and then a high paying job won't be quite as necessary.
It all sounds good in my brain.

A few folks were discouraging me from WY, because of the wind factor. They made it sound like the wind blows 24/7, and that my skin will turn to leather, and my hair to strawalso something aout water rights and people will shoot you if you use "their" water, that is running on "your" property
One positive thing with WY though is that there are more jobs than people to fill them, but that might change in 5 to 7 years when I am ready to get out of here

I am still starting to favor CO though for the mountains. I don't particularly care much for prarie flatland. I don't need to be right in the mountains, but to be fairly close would be nice.
Looking on Realtor.com I found some decent horse properties, just east of Estes Park for under 200K. I am going to have to take a road trip, to check things out. Maybe also head up to WY/MT as well. At this rate it might take me 5 to 7 years to research it all

Thanks for all the info, and I will check out Loopnet, but there is no way to forget the job thing I'm afraid. When I make the move, I will be around 48 yrs young, so I will still have a good 20 yrs to give to a company. Of course I could always start my own business maybe...i.e. Auto repair, or some kind of Niche market idea.
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Old 12-23-2006, 07:01 PM
 
Location: Colorado Springs
1,312 posts, read 6,900,917 times
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If you don't like the wind, you will not like Colorado in the winter especially from the Continental Divide and east.

A few years ago, near Steamboat Springs during a snowstorm, hundreds of acres of trees were felled by the winds and they are on the west of the divide. The Front Range of CO frequently gets intense winds which are called "Chinook" winds that help warm us up but you pay for that with some gusts up to 70 mph. The winds come down from Canada (like they did during the blizzard this last week) and sustained winds were at 35-45 mph here in C Springs and not sure about the gusts but they were intense - not sure about north of us (Denver). Wyoming is not that much different than CO in terms of geography and weather patterns.

Also, the immigrant population, illegal or not is a big part of our economy. The hispanic population is (I am guessing) around 14% here (higher in some places than others but generally speaking) which compared to many states is pretty high although not as high as NM, AZ or CA. They are a very important part of the history of Colorado and while I don't want to get too political...the good majority of them are very upstanding citizens. I have yet to meet one of hispanic heritage that is any more or less than anyone else. I would think that would be the last thing on your mind...but hey, to each their own.
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Old 12-24-2006, 09:34 AM
 
Location: Cody WY Off Of Belfry Hwy
737 posts, read 2,839,393 times
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The immigrane population is the least big deal to me. I am not a racial person, but where I am they are about 54% of the population, and about 90% of the workforce, in my area of work, so needless to say, I don't get many english speaking conversations.
You are coorect, about them being a huge part of the economy. They are willing to work hard, and do jobs that we (white folks) won't do because it doesn't "pay" enough...well those jobs still need to be done.

As far as wind goes. It gets windy here, during Oct/Nov/Dec, with what is known as Santa Ana winds. Sustained 35 to 45 MPH, with gusts to 70 75.
One persons wind, might be another persons breeze.
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Old 12-24-2006, 04:02 PM
 
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
22,389 posts, read 39,704,721 times
Reputation: 23408
Quote:
Originally Posted by johns65vette View Post
I... but I buy a house there now, then hopefully, when I am ready to make the move, and sell here, ... A few folks were discouraging me from WY, because of the wind factor. They made it sound like the wind blows 24/7, ... One positive thing with WY though is that there are more jobs than people to fill them, but that might change in 5 to 7 years when I am ready to get out of here... I am still starting to favor CO though for the mountains. ... Looking on Realtor.com I found some decent horse properties, just east of Estes Park for under 200K. I am going to have to take a road trip, to check things out. Maybe also head up to WY/MT as well. ...there is no way to forget the job thing I'm afraid. When I make the move, I will be around 48 yrs ...
I pulled the plug in on the job at age 49, now just working for insurance and play money. Colo will have more likelihood of sustained employ (diverse jobs) WYO goes boom and bust on energy, I hope they do not overbuild infrastructure with today's wealth, and have to tax to death to sustain in the future. The energy will be good for ~5yrs, as in the 'late 70's, BUT... as in the early 80's things could get real ugly. While I am really into and support alternative energy, and US self sufficient, the masses (voters and SUV drivers) will tweak the market and get their way (as they now have done with diesel prices) or OPEC will get hungry and drop prices again, and US expensive energy will go out of favor (too bad) BUT you can do the passive solar thing in CO or WY and that will help, and brew your own Bio-d. Wind energy is a bit $$$,

The wind is a factor in both Co and WY and just be prepared, but it should not deter. Typically worse in Late fall and spring, summers are nice (breezy in WY.) I can still visualize the morning I woke up when about age 8, and our nieghbors new double wide modular was 'GONE", only floor remained and clothes and furniture strewn across the field. That was west of Loveland, CO next to Devil's Backbone.

Take the road trip, and arrange a way to stay in the homes of locals and ask questions. There are several directories, the one we use lists hobbies and interests, and I often choose the site by that criteria. If you really need a job, and want mtns, I'd focus on northern CO, but it is pretty crowded and expensive (not relative to CA) If you can find a job to move to, then western CO (Montrose, Grand Junction) or southern (Salida). It is much less crowed and more spectacular beauty. I prefer WY, but only due to my current employment and tax requirements. It can be great, but as I mentioned, job market is fickle. That translates to a potential to LOSE $$$ on Real estate (or not being able to resale) I would not be buying at the moment, unless I found a bargain. The ideal thing is to buy a place that would support itself via rental, and have a shop with an apartment for you to stay in when visiting. Go for large acreage and small house, preferrably something that can be subdivided later (when you are a resident, free taxes on gain) or get a commercial prop (with positive cash flow) in the region you want to move, then you have at least locked into the local market. BUT try to buy 'under valued and distressed props. Right now you need to look for folks that have 'overbought' with an ARM. I would be looking for 20-30% reductions in this 'overpriced' market. Vacant Commercial is good, but somewhat risky, unless you have a vision for getting a leasee.

Take that road trip!, stay awhile, meet the people, hang out in grocery, and hardware / feed stores (not the Walmart / Lowes variety...) and at community events. Loveland is nice on Valentines Day!
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Old 12-24-2006, 04:27 PM
 
Location: Cody WY Off Of Belfry Hwy
737 posts, read 2,839,393 times
Reputation: 233
Quote:
Originally Posted by janb View Post
WYO goes boom and bust on energy, I hope they do not overbuild infrastructure with today's wealth, and have to tax to death to sustain in the future. The energy will be good for ~5yrs, as in the 'late 70's, BUT... as in the early 80's things could get real ugly. While I am really into and support alternative energy, and US self sufficient, the masses (voters and SUV drivers) will tweak the market and get their way (as they now have done with diesel prices) or OPEC will get hungry and drop prices again, and US expensive energy will go out of favor (too bad) BUT you can do the passive solar thing in CO or WY and that will help, and brew your own Bio-d. Wind energy is a bit $$$,

The wind is a factor in both Co and WY and just be prepared, but it should not deter. Typically worse in Late fall and spring, summers are nice (breezy in WY.) I can still visualize the morning I woke up when about age 8, and our nieghbors new double wide modular was 'GONE", only floor remained and clothes and furniture strewn across the field. That was west of Loveland, CO next to Devil's Backbone.

Take the road trip, and arrange a way to stay in the homes of locals and ask questions. There are several directories, the one we use lists hobbies and interests, and I often choose the site by that criteria. If you really need a job, and want mtns, I'd focus on northern CO, but it is pretty crowded and expensive (not relative to CA) If you can find a job to move to, then western CO (Montrose, Grand Junction) or southern (Salida). It is much less crowed and more spectacular beauty. I prefer WY, but only due to my current employment and tax requirements. It can be great, but as I mentioned, job market is fickle. That translates to a potential to LOSE $$$ on Real estate (or not being able to resale) I would not be buying at the moment, unless I found a bargain. The ideal thing is to buy a place that would support itself via rental, and have a shop with an apartment for you to stay in when visiting. Go for large acreage and small house, preferrably something that can be subdivided later (when you are a resident, free taxes on gain) or get a commercial prop (with positive cash flow) in the region you want to move, then you have at least locked into the local market. BUT try to buy 'under valued and distressed props. Right now you need to look for folks that have 'overbought' with an ARM. I would be looking for 20-30% reductions in this 'overpriced' market. Vacant Commercial is good, but somewhat risky, unless you have a vision for getting a leasee.

Take that road trip!, stay awhile, meet the people, hang out in grocery, and hardware / feed stores (not the Walmart / Lowes variety...) and at community events. Loveland is nice on Valentines Day!
Interesting what you say about property....I was thinking along the same lines...buying/renting out. I might be going out on workers comp early next year, for carpal tunnel surgery, so that will be a perfect time for the road trip
It's good to know the wind isn't quite as bad in summer as in winter.
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Old 12-29-2006, 03:11 PM
 
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Grand Junction is a great place. And the job market is pretty wide open right now because of all the oil drilling coming into the valley. It seems like everyone is looking for workers here. We definitely do not have a wind problem here. Summers are usually in the 80-90's and right now it is about 40-50. We have had snow only twice this year (a few inches or so...) since Thanksgiving, but not much of it is left. Probably will get a few more bouts before spring, but most of it melts away by the mid afternoon...Very nice climate and location.
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Old 12-29-2006, 04:24 PM
 
Location: Cody WY Off Of Belfry Hwy
737 posts, read 2,839,393 times
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Is GJ horse friendly? I looked on Realtor.com, and did not see anything about horse property, although, the prices seemed good, for a house with some land.
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Old 01-02-2007, 08:02 AM
 
31 posts, read 161,212 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johns65vette View Post
Is GJ horse friendly? I looked on Realtor.com, and did not see anything about horse property, although, the prices seemed good, for a house with some land.
For the most part, if you buy property big enough to fit a horse near Grand Junction you can keep them there. I know that there are a ton of people with horses there and you see them all over the place. If you want a little more land for your buck, I'd look a little further west in Fruita or Loma. Both of these are 20 minutes or less to GJ. You can also look in Palisade which is east of Grand Junction. Having horses within the GJ city limits may be more difficult, more due to the property prices than any lack of horse friendliness.

Edit: Forgot to mention the massive number of places to ride there. I had a horse through middle and high school in GJ and there is just practically unlimited places to take your horses to.
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