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Unread 09-06-2008, 07:33 AM
 
7 posts, read 12,406 times
Reputation: 10
Wink Safe neighborhoods with CHARACTER! CO? ID? OR?

Hi All,
We live in the South and the conservatives are killing us! We are trying to decide between Colorado, Boise, and perhaps somewhere in the NW. What we are looking for is a neighborhood within easy driving distance to a big city (for a fun night out), but in an affordable and safe place. We have two children, but are willing to send them to private school if they are affordable (if the local schools aren't good). We would like to live in a neighborhood that is established - NO cookie cutters please. Preferably a craftsman bungalow-ish neighborhood. We are pro-diversity and culture, but we also don't want crime. And it has to be affordable. (I'm sure you've never heard that before huh?) This is likely going to be my main problem as I now live in an area of town where the median house price is $150-200K. I know, I know....dirt cheap! Fixer uppers are fine. Would like to live in close proximity to colleges/universities as I am in higher education and may switch schools as the career options increase. No more than a 30 minute drive to work. If I am being too picky, it's not intentional and some of these requests are negotiable - I just don't know what's out there, and from what I see on these threads, the more specific you are the better. If my husband and I both have jobs that are in the $40-60K range ($80-120K combined) can we still afford to live there and have a life?
PS - I don't mind cold weather, but I HATE RAIN! :-)
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Unread 09-06-2008, 09:18 AM
Status: "Maple tree is leafing out!" (set 8 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
65,472 posts, read 51,799,109 times
Reputation: 17921
Is price negotiable? If so, there are a number of places in metro Denver that may fit the bill.
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Unread 09-06-2008, 11:53 AM
 
2,755 posts, read 7,929,271 times
Reputation: 1349
If you're looking for craftsman-style, the Denver area has quite a bit to offer. Much of the present city of Denver was built around that turn-of the century time and craftsman is extremely common in the city. Suburban areas of Denver tended to grow more in the post-WWII area, but most of the closer-in suburbs have a small core that dates back to about that time period. As for crime, the city of Denver does have its bad sections, but in my opinion they're more the exception than the rule, so finding a low-crime neighborhood in Denver is not hard. The same can be said for the suburbs (there are bad suburban areas, but it's pretty easy to find a good one).

So, what you want is quite doable, the only concern is price. Within the city of Denver itself, 150k-200k for a craftsman-style bungalow is possible, but likely to be a foreclosure/fixer -- that's due to the gentrification of the neighborhoods in the last 10 years that has driven prices upward. A more realistic option might be in the older sections of some of the suburbs -- a good place to start might be in the original town of Englewood (sometimes people say "Old Englewood").
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Unread 09-06-2008, 12:32 PM
Status: "Maple tree is leafing out!" (set 8 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
65,472 posts, read 51,799,109 times
Reputation: 17921
You might also try Old Town Arvada. You might find something for $200K, give or take a little (probably a little higher).
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Unread 09-06-2008, 01:50 PM
 
7 posts, read 12,406 times
Reputation: 10
Default Thanks!

Thanks everyone! 200K-ish is certainly doable. I appreciate the tips!
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Unread 09-06-2008, 02:15 PM
 
4,267 posts, read 2,729,989 times
Reputation: 3579
Quote:
Originally Posted by tfox View Post
A more realistic option might be in the older sections of some of the suburbs -- a good place to start might be in the original town of Englewood (sometimes people say "Old Englewood").
I second that. We bought our Craftsman Bungalow in Old Englewood for under 200K. It needed some work but overall, not bad.
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Unread 09-07-2008, 10:50 AM
 
Location: New York City
2,791 posts, read 3,443,332 times
Reputation: 2969
Check out Bloomington, Indiana. It may just be what you are looking for.
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Unread 09-07-2008, 12:55 PM
 
Location: Houston
6 posts, read 22,308 times
Reputation: 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by kfergus3 View Post
Hi All,
We live in the South and the conservatives are killing us!
Do all conservatives "kill" you, or is it more specifically the deep South types? I don't care for liberals, but the liberal reputation of Denver proper is not nearly enough to offset all of the positives the area has to offer. I am looking at the southern Denver suburbs (Highlands Ranch, most likely), as it seems like they are the most conservative and safest.

Based on the research I've compiled (empirical & talking to many people), your best bet is probably to stay close to Denver proper or to look north and west in the direction of Boulder.
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