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Old 07-01-2012, 08:46 PM
 
Location: Shanghai
3 posts, read 5,739 times
Reputation: 10

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Hello Everyone

I have been based in Shanghai for 5 years now working for a US company. We now have a opportunity to relocate to our US office in Denver CO. Golden to be exact and I was wondering if anyone can help out by offering some advice regarding the living costs in Denver for a family of 3 with a 1 yr old.

I'm a British passport holder wife and kid both Chinese and we are applying for the L1B visa.

Questions.

Location - My office is based in Golden so lets say a nice suburb area inbetween Golden and Denver will do, not sure exactly where would be open to any suggestions?
Rent for 2 bed room house?
Kindergarten costs?
Food for a family per week? Lets say we buy at Wholefoods, I know this is one of the more expensive options but this will be a good marker.
Utilities bills Electric, gas, Cable TV, Phone, Cell Phone, etc.?
1 x Car, petrol,car insurance? (Honda Civic = Simple Sedan)
Mortgage for $300k house and taxes and management costs?
Any other costs for a family with one kid that we might need to consider?
Other costs in general?

Many thanks in advance.

Brds
Pooney
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Old 07-01-2012, 10:21 PM
 
5,090 posts, read 13,547,490 times
Reputation: 6928
The area in and around Golden is one of the best areas to live being near the foothills of the Rockies. It has excellent well established cities of Golden, Wheat Ridge, Arvada and Lakewood. The schools are run by Jefferson County which is considered one of the best school systems. You can easily find homes very close to where you live in good neighborhoods that would make for an easy commute.

Depending on the area of your office, that would determine the best places to live. I am going to make a stab in the dark and guess that your office will be in the Denver West Park, north of West Colfax. If that is the case or not the case, you can find a good place to live which is called Applewood. It is just east of this office park, centered on Youngfield, and is where Wheat Ridge, Golden, and Lakewood come together. This area is considered as a premium place to live in the area near Golden.

The western suburbs of Denver are considered to be more conservative with more natives and long term Colorado residents. That is because these areas were the first suburban areas to be settled as it has more water resources. It is very convenient with being closer to Downtown Denver. Public transit will soon improve dramatically in the area through Lakewood and to Golden, as a new commuter light rail line will be opening in April 2013 with the terminus at Union Station in Denver.

The place to search for homes in this area is this website run by the local realtor network
Homes for Sale in Colorado | Metrolist MLS This will give you the information you need about the price and availability. Homes Prices in the area are on the higher side than many parts of the country but are bargain if you compare homes in California or New York City. Mortgage Rates in the US are at historical low, so a mortgage would be a bargain that has not been seen for decades, making this the time to buy instead of rent. You would be in a good situation, as you would not have to sell before you need to buy.

Wholefoods is not a good marker for good prices and as you say it is expensive. Most people here buy from the larger food stores such as Kroger, Safeway and Walmart and may supplement with the likes of Wholefoods and Sunflower Market. In your case, considering your family, you may be shopping for favorite foods at some of our many Asian Markets where the prices for ethnic products will be much cheaper than the overpriced Wholefoods. It is hard to give estimates of food purchasing as that is really much up to individual taste and food is not considered expensive in the Denver area.

The other costs you requested are so individual with variable cost depending on options and I think minor fixed expenses considering you can afford a $300,000 house and desire to buy at "Wholepaycheck", which it is sometimes called. Utilities and Gasoline are lower than many parts of the country. Property taxes are much lower than other areas. If you mean by Management Fees, a Homeowner association fees, they do exist and can be pricey in much newer housing developments but areas near Golden have more older developments where Homeowner fees do not exist as there are no Homeowners Associations.

You are really years away from Kindergarten because it is for about 5 years old children. Your biggest cost for your child will be child care which can be expensive, if your wife will also be working.

Livecontent

Last edited by livecontent; 07-01-2012 at 10:47 PM..
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Old 07-01-2012, 10:51 PM
 
Location: Denver, CO
5,608 posts, read 20,718,689 times
Reputation: 5347
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pooney View Post
Food for a family per week? Lets say we buy at Wholefoods, I know this is one of the more expensive options but this will be a good marker.
There is absolutely no way to answer that question, as depending on the size of your family, how much food your family goes through, how often you eat at home vs going out, and the types of products you buy, how much prepackaged foods you buy vs raw ingredients, how much fresh fruit & vegetables you buy, the answer could vary wildly from one family to another. In terms of food prices in general at major supermarkets, other than New York City and a few remote locations such as Alaska and Hawaii where everything is more expensive, prices are pretty much the same everywhere in the country.
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Old 07-03-2012, 06:56 PM
 
Location: Shanghai
3 posts, read 5,739 times
Reputation: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by livecontent View Post
The area in and around Golden is one of the best areas to live being near the foothills of the Rockies. It has excellent well established cities of Golden, Wheat Ridge, Arvada and Lakewood. The schools are run by Jefferson County which is considered one of the best school systems. You can easily find homes very close to where you live in good neighborhoods that would make for an easy commute.

Depending on the area of your office, that would determine the best places to live. I am going to make a stab in the dark and guess that your office will be in the Denver West Park, north of West Colfax. If that is the case or not the case, you can find a good place to live which is called Applewood. It is just east of this office park, centered on Youngfield, and is where Wheat Ridge, Golden, and Lakewood come together. This area is considered as a premium place to live in the area near Golden.

The western suburbs of Denver are considered to be more conservative with more natives and long term Colorado residents. That is because these areas were the first suburban areas to be settled as it has more water resources. It is very convenient with being closer to Downtown Denver. Public transit will soon improve dramatically in the area through Lakewood and to Golden, as a new commuter light rail line will be opening in April 2013 with the terminus at Union Station in Denver.

The place to search for homes in this area is this website run by the local realtor network
Homes for Sale in Colorado | Metrolist MLS This will give you the information you need about the price and availability. Homes Prices in the area are on the higher side than many parts of the country but are bargain if you compare homes in California or New York City. Mortgage Rates in the US are at historical low, so a mortgage would be a bargain that has not been seen for decades, making this the time to buy instead of rent. You would be in a good situation, as you would not have to sell before you need to buy.

Wholefoods is not a good marker for good prices and as you say it is expensive. Most people here buy from the larger food stores such as Kroger, Safeway and Walmart and may supplement with the likes of Wholefoods and Sunflower Market. In your case, considering your family, you may be shopping for favorite foods at some of our many Asian Markets where the prices for ethnic products will be much cheaper than the overpriced Wholefoods. It is hard to give estimates of food purchasing as that is really much up to individual taste and food is not considered expensive in the Denver area.

The other costs you requested are so individual with variable cost depending on options and I think minor fixed expenses considering you can afford a $300,000 house and desire to buy at "Wholepaycheck", which it is sometimes called. Utilities and Gasoline are lower than many parts of the country. Property taxes are much lower than other areas. If you mean by Management Fees, a Homeowner association fees, they do exist and can be pricey in much newer housing developments but areas near Golden have more older developments where Homeowner fees do not exist as there are no Homeowners Associations.

You are really years away from Kindergarten because it is for about 5 years old children. Your biggest cost for your child will be child care which can be expensive, if your wife will also be working.

Livecontent
Hi

Thanks for the great info, but would you have any idea about the Kindergarten costs? Ive done some research on the internet and some say its in the region off $300+ but other say it can cost as much as $1200+? Although its some years away but a rough idea of the cost will be great.

Many thanks in advance.

Brds
Tony
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Old 07-03-2012, 07:27 PM
 
5,090 posts, read 13,547,490 times
Reputation: 6928
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pooney View Post
Hi

Thanks for the great info, but would you have any idea about the Kindergarten costs? Ive done some research on the internet and some say its in the region off $300+ but other say it can cost as much as $1200+? Although its some years away but a rough idea of the cost will be great.

Many thanks in advance.

Brds
Tony
I really do not know what you are asking, as you said you have a 1 yr. old an I told you that kindergarten is for 5 years old. Kindergarten is a function of the School System.

In our country public school what is called government run schools and private schools are run by private funds. I am saying that because I am aware of the term "public school" as used in the UK and the term means the opposite in the US. The cost of school in this country is paid primarily by property taxes; that tax being the most collected of any property tax. Kindergarten is already covered. Of course there are small personal expenses.

I suspect you are trying to express the idea of childcare which is expensive. We have childcare (for infants and toddlers) and preschools (for little older potty trained), the cost depends on the age of the child and could be in the range of $200 to $300 or more a week for five days of care, at the most about 9 hours a day--so $300 a week or $1200 a month would be about right. In addition, there is after school care cost, if the parent cannot pick up a child from school because they work a full day. A child must have a caregiver until age 12.

Livecontent
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