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Old 03-31-2015, 12:07 PM
 
2,409 posts, read 2,628,712 times
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The other day I was walking through LoDo and LoHi and couldn't help but notice how many 20- and 30-looking people live in these neighborhoods. A one-bedroom apartment here goes for at least 1.5k/month. How can so many young people afford such places? And it's not like nearby neighborhoods are that much cheaper. A one bedroom in uptown, North Capitol Hill, or Baker, also costs more than a grand per month. There are a lot of apartment buildings under construction, and from the looks of it, they are all upscale buildings and will probably cost 1.5k-2k a month as well.

And of course these people don't just live there. They also go out, eat out, party, ... a lot which isn't cheap.

What do these people do that earns them so much money? We are not talking a minority. There are tens of thousands of 20- and 30-something's occupying LoDo and LoHi, and a lot more occupying the nearby neighborhoods.
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Old 03-31-2015, 12:19 PM
 
Location: Denver and Boston
1,701 posts, read 1,529,086 times
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Many 20s that you see dont live in those hoods. The ones that do often have roommates. Some people, usually women from my experience, just spend a very high percentage of their income to live in a urban trendy area. As I have said before, white women in their 20s and 30s determine premium housing prices in expensive urban areas, they will spend top dollar to live in a shoe box with no parking just to be within walking distance of whatnot. Men will generally choose to commute to whatnot.
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Old 03-31-2015, 12:31 PM
 
Location: Denver, CO
898 posts, read 987,751 times
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Have you ever been to NYC? When things get expensive you either have to make sacrifices OR make enough money that you don't have to sacrifice. Don't be surprised if you find out that most of these people value location, walkability, and nightlife over personal space, a new car, etc.

I know it's weird in Denver because until recently we didn't have to make sacrifices, and some of us are stable that the COL increase doesn't impact us but for example in NYC it's not uncommon to see 4 people sharing a 2 bedroom to live in Manhattan. These are white collar finance types too, not immigrants who btw will often sleep 6 people in a studio. At the same time, there were people there sitting on a goldmine in a rent controlled apartment enjoying 1200 sqft in central park for a couple hundred bucks a month while others are sitting on multi million dollar houses that they bought 50 years ago and they barely make more than the rest of us. Anyway, back to the roommate situation (4 people in a 2 bedroom) - these people don't have a car payment or insurance nor do they worry about commuting costs. They value being able to hit a different bar every night over a backyard and don't mind sleeping in a bunk bed in their 20s to be able to go out whereever they want and party all night. Hey, it's their money and their choices. You can't fathom living like that (neither can I), but they can't fathom living like us.

It's all about timing, and making smart decisions, and getting lucky. Or, you missed the boat and now have to make sacrifices or try your luck somewhere cheaper and hope that you too will get lucky.
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Old 03-31-2015, 12:45 PM
 
Location: The Berk in Denver, CO USA
13,950 posts, read 20,207,715 times
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Define "wealthy".
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Old 03-31-2015, 12:52 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by davebarnes View Post
Define "wealthy".
Make a lot of money or have a lot of money.
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Old 03-31-2015, 01:06 PM
 
25,959 posts, read 28,369,321 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AmFest View Post
Make a lot of money or have a lot of money.
That sounds more like 'high income" than wealthy. Wealth is what you have saved/invested.
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Old 03-31-2015, 01:08 PM
 
Location: Born & Raised DC > Carolinas > Seattle > Denver
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with the rental market being what it is around Denver, 1.5 to 2k is almost average for a decent place.
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Old 03-31-2015, 01:31 PM
 
369 posts, read 839,819 times
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I think Dave's point was that 'wealthy' can mean different things to different people. A lot of money for Warren Buffet is different than a lot of money for the guy living in the undergrowth along the Platte River, so let's talk numbers - what's wealthy?

Let's say that rent for a trendy apartment is $1500/month. And let's say that you go with the commonly held idea that up to 1/3 of your gross income can go towards housing. That puts you roughly at $54K/year ($1500*3*12), which happens to be the average salary in Denver.

For professionals with a degree or two and 5-10 years of work experience, that actually seems like a low salary to me. Employers adjust their salaries to cost of living in an area, so as it goes up, the salaries follow. There's a lot of big corporate work around, and a lot of people live in Denver but work remotely for a company not in Denver, so their salary goes against a nation or world wide band.

Specifically in my field of software engineering, starting out of school salaries are in the $60K/year range. That can get up to $100K/year in 5-10 years time if someone is good at it and works hard. So making more than $100K/year for someone in their 30s is not abnormal in the software engineering world. I've seen people stay purely hands on coding hit around $175K/year here in Denver, and then getting into management can get you up to the low to mid $200s/year. At those levels, then stock starts to play a role too, the company gives you either stock outright or at a discounted price. I know software engineering is inflated because it's in high demand and has a low supply of folks, but from what I know, other professional and/or corporate roles out there follow a similar path.
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Old 03-31-2015, 02:28 PM
 
Location: In The Thin Air
12,259 posts, read 8,040,413 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by denver_hacker View Post
I think Dave's point was that 'wealthy' can mean different things to different people. A lot of money for Warren Buffet is different than a lot of money for the guy living in the undergrowth along the Platte River, so let's talk numbers - what's wealthy?

Let's say that rent for a trendy apartment is $1500/month. And let's say that you go with the commonly held idea that up to 1/3 of your gross income can go towards housing. That puts you roughly at $54K/year ($1500*3*12), which happens to be the average salary in Denver.

For professionals with a degree or two and 5-10 years of work experience, that actually seems like a low salary to me. Employers adjust their salaries to cost of living in an area, so as it goes up, the salaries follow. There's a lot of big corporate work around, and a lot of people live in Denver but work remotely for a company not in Denver, so their salary goes against a nation or world wide band.

Specifically in my field of software engineering, starting out of school salaries are in the $60K/year range. That can get up to $100K/year in 5-10 years time if someone is good at it and works hard. So making more than $100K/year for someone in their 30s is not abnormal in the software engineering world. I've seen people stay purely hands on coding hit around $175K/year here in Denver, and then getting into management can get you up to the low to mid $200s/year. At those levels, then stock starts to play a role too, the company gives you either stock outright or at a discounted price. I know software engineering is inflated because it's in high demand and has a low supply of folks, but from what I know, other professional and/or corporate roles out there follow a similar path.
There actually is a shortage of software engineers here in the metro area. My company always has positions open for them. I am in IT and sometimes I wish I went into development because of the money and endless opportunities but to me that is brain damage or I just don't think that way.

My title still has engineering in it though whether that means anything or not.

Related to the subject I have an uncle that bought a loft in LoDo. He is pushing 60 so he might look out of place among all the yutes.
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Old 03-31-2015, 03:19 PM
 
Location: Denver, CO
2,391 posts, read 1,797,881 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert5 View Post
Many 20s that you see dont live in those hoods. The ones that do often have roommates. Some people, usually women from my experience, just spend a very high percentage of their income to live in a urban trendy area. As I have said before, white women in their 20s and 30s determine premium housing prices in expensive urban areas, they will spend top dollar to live in a shoe box with no parking just to be within walking distance of whatnot. Men will generally choose to commute to whatnot.
I agree with this post.

My GF is a first year teacher and lives in a very nice, very new apartment complex in Baker and pays around $1,000/mo. Another female friend of mine currently lives in a 1-BR in the Highlands and pays about $1200/mo. She's always complaining about her low income, which I believe is in the $30k range. I had another female friend, who currently resides in Chicago, who lived in one of those high rises near Wash Park and another apartment near Cheesman Park. She also made in the low $30k range. They often times don't put any money into savings or investments.

Women, IME, spend more of their net income on rent to be closer to the scene. Otherwise, they're living with multiple roommates.
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