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Old 08-22-2007, 12:41 PM
 
9 posts, read 56,599 times
Reputation: 32

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Hello!

My husband has a great job opportunity in Denver (well, Aurora). Right now we live in the Seattle suburbs. We have been looking for a new place to live for awhile because Seattle doesn't quite fit us and the cost of living is killing us. We think Denver might be a refreshing change, so we will most likely go for it. I have a lot more questions but I think I can find most of my answers in other threads.

We will probably rent for about a year to really decide where we want to live, but would like to rent in the city/town that we THINK we might want to settle down.

When I say commutable I mean something under a 20 minute drive. Right now he drives about an hour to get to work (maybe 30 minutes without traffic), and we would really like to cut that down considerably. Somewhere with a good public transportation option would be great if possible.

We are looking at a cost of between 250k and 350k if possible. We could go higher if necessary if the perfect place was in a higher range but would like to keep it as low as possible while still having a nice home in a nice area.

We would like, preferably a newer home, but it could be an older home with character too, just that we are not very handy. Around 2000 sq. ft, with a bit of a yard (we have a toddler and a dog).

We would also consider living IN the city if it was the right area. We have never lived in the city before but sometimes I feel like we might fit in well there in a funky young family area. One of the main reasons I would consider the city would be to be somewhere that I could actually walk to the park, the grocery store etc.

The factors that are important to us are:

1. Very low crime, safe (as you can get anyway) for children
2. Walkable neighborhood with sidewalks
3. Would love a community feel where neighbors know each other and even do things together. You can't find that here but I thought I would ask anyway
4. Great schools, and maybe private school options (Montessorri??)

That's all I can think of right now, and if this question has been asked before I'm sorry for repeating, but I didn't feel like I was getting quite the "tailored for us" information I was looking for.

THANK YOU in advance for your help
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Old 08-22-2007, 06:02 PM
 
Location: Just south of Denver since 1989
10,917 posts, read 29,421,906 times
Reputation: 7150
Where in Aurora? You could be in Aurora and have a 30 minute commute.

You can easily find what you are looking for in SE Aurora & Centennial.
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Old 08-22-2007, 06:18 PM
 
Location: Denver
195 posts, read 728,763 times
Reputation: 88
I just went through this. I just got a job in Northern Aurora and I'm living near Washington Park in Denver (9 miles). I tested the commute and it's 25 minutes (with lights). No highways.
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Old 08-22-2007, 06:39 PM
 
9 posts, read 56,599 times
Reputation: 32
I'm not sure exactly what part of Aurora its in yet, the address is on S Vaughn Way zip 80014.
I read that SE Aurora is nice but the rest of Aurora not so nice. If we were to look at houses in SE Aurora would we be far from any undesirable area? I didn't realize that Aurora was such a huge area.
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Old 08-23-2007, 12:58 AM
 
Location: Colorado, Denver Metro Area
1,048 posts, read 3,987,320 times
Reputation: 397
There are many nice houses right in the 80014 code. Most were built in the late 80's and 90s but a few areas are new.

If it is a good job with long term prospects, I think the 80014 would be a great place to live. Target, Safeway, Kind Soopers, Lowes are all close. I also like that area because it few minutes from I-225 (which junctions with I-25) and this gives great N/S access for Denver and Aurora.
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Old 08-28-2007, 10:48 AM
 
4 posts, read 26,609 times
Reputation: 13
You should check out my neighborhood. I live in a subdivision named Tuscany. It's unincorporated (lower taxes). The Montesorri school is 3 blocks from my house. The houses range from the $250,000's to the high $400,000's. I moved into this neighborhood 3 years ago for the top rated elementary, middle and high school all in the Cherry Creek School District. There's greenbelts and walking trails all around this area. I walk my dog every morning for an hour, sometimes I meet up with other neighbors and walk with them. It's an extremely friendly neighborhood, lots of fun things to do. The neighborhood pool is awesome and throws both kids only and adult only parties. Other close neighborhoods in the same schools are Greenfield and Sienna. Sienna's homes are more expensive, $400,000's to $900,000's. We're very close to the new Southlands outdoor mall. It's very nice, music always playing, Theaters, Restaurants, ice skating in the winter and fun water fountain for the kids in the summer. Obviously I love this area, it would be worth your checking out. Also the neighborhood is surrounded by Aurora and Centennial. Vaughn street in Aurora is no more than 10 minutes from here, there wouldn't really be any rush hour type traffic.
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Old 08-28-2007, 10:59 AM
 
9 posts, read 56,599 times
Reputation: 32
wow thank you so much. That really sounds perfect and just like what I'm looking for!
We are thinking of renting for awhile before we buy to really get to know the area. If I were to look at rental homes on craigslist or somewhere else, would you suggest I look up "tuscany" or is it part of another town?
THANKS!
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Old 08-29-2007, 05:54 AM
 
Location: Denver
195 posts, read 728,763 times
Reputation: 88
Default My apartment quest:

I was in Denver a couple weeks ago looking for places to live that would work for my commute to Northern Aurora. My criteria were low crime density, safe walking/running trail, and social community (you see people outside exercising or socializing). I should mention that I am single, so schools were not much of a concern, but looking at the forums in here you do see Cherry Creek School District popping up time and time again as a good school district. I noticed that you want to rent for a year, and that is the same thing I wanted to do.

I was looking at a Denver crime density map, but I could NOT get published crime density statistics easily from the Aurora City police. I had to go through some red tape, only to find out that they do not publish density maps like Denver does because they believe it will deter people from living in certain neighborhoods. Apparently, if I kept digging and spoke a a few more people I could have nailed something down, but I lost steam and decided to just check out SE Aurora as many people in this forum have suggested.

I was considering some neighborhoods in both Denver and Aurora that would be less than a 30 minute commute. The most social neighborhoods I would say that were best for a rental with a low crime density would be Lowry, Washington Park, Platt Park, DU area, or SE Aurora. For me, after visiting all of these areas, Wash Park was a clear winner. Wash Park is a beautiful social neighborhood with a tree lined park and a dirt trail in the center of the neighborhood (good for your knees if you are a runner). Anyway, I was seriously impressed with Wash Park coming from Baltimore myself.

I should mention that Wash Park/DU/Platt Park had the most trees. Not a ton of trees in SE Aurora.

I also considered DTC (Denver Tech Center) area rentals, but decided against it b/c of the commute to Aurora. But you might want to take a look at it.

Lowry is a QUIET safe neighborhood that was developed on the closed Lowry AirForce base. It has a "vanilla" feel to it, and it feels a bit like a ghost town...It's almost like you can feel the ghosts of hundreds of Airmen and their planes. It's an interesting community...in the end, not social enough for me.

I was in Denver a week and looked at A LOT of apartment communities before I found one that suited me. You've probably heard it before, but it's best to visit these neighborhoods yourself to see how you "feel".

I just wanted to say that my impression of SE Aurora and the area around Southlands Mall was that it was much nicer than the rest of Aurora, similar to what you have been reading on this board. There is also the relatively new Aurora Reservoir surrounded by the plains, which I found to be stunning being from the east coast. The day I visited the reservoir, there was some storming and a huge double rainbow over the plains nears the reservoir. I thought it was beautiful.

Here are a few resources that I have acquired to help me with my search:

Denver Crime Maps and Stats:
2006 Denver Police Department Annual Report
DenverMaps Report
Topics

This is the BEST Denver Crime link for maps. Check out the 2006 "Citywide Crime Maps". These are the best maps to a get a feel how the Denver neighborhoods compare. Also, it's great to see where all the neighborhoods actually are:

2006 Crime Statistics

More Denver Maps
DenverMaps Report

Denver neighborhood info:
Topics

Aurora's online resources just aren't as good as Denver's (IMHO), but here are a couple that I found:

Aurora Safety Report
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Aurora Parks & Trails
This is a great map, but you cannot print it out because it is too large. I ordered it from the City of Aurora and they mailed it to me. It is a very good map to find communities that are close to trails.
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I hope this helps!
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Old 08-29-2007, 08:52 AM
 
Location: denver
161 posts, read 675,339 times
Reputation: 89
Why Aurora??? its the worst city in metro!!!
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Old 08-29-2007, 09:01 AM
 
Location: Just south of Denver since 1989
10,917 posts, read 29,421,906 times
Reputation: 7150
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kyusa View Post
Why Aurora??? its the worst city in metro!!!

Based on what criteria?

Aurora crime index on City-data is 469
Colorado Springs is 411
Denver is 574
Fort Collins 299
Boulder is 260
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