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Old 12-27-2008, 11:02 AM
 
21 posts, read 38,965 times
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I feel bad starting another "moving to Denver" thread, so I will try to be somewhat unique in the advice I am seeking. I've lurked on the Denver site for close to 1.5 years, and it has been an invaluable resource for me in gaining a feel for the area.

BACKGROUND: I am 28, married, hope to have kids in a couple years, have lived in Texas my whole life, and have a law degree but am a consultant. My interests are: golf, sports, traveling, fitness, going out with friends, brew pubs, food, shopping, the outdoors, animals (love dogs), and many more.

I have entertained the idea of relocating to Denver ever since I visited in August '07. Since then, I visited three times: twice in January '08 (5 days each time) & in October '08 (6 days). I fell in love with the area after my first trip, and it seemed almost too good to be true. It was surreal thinking about being so close to the mountains, and Denver is so much cleaner/safer/entertaining than Houston. After this trip, I thought that Denver would be an awesome place to live, if for some crazy reason I ever had the guts to leave Texas.

I did a lot of research between my August visit and my January trips, and these trips were both to see the city and interview. I loved the weather, vibrant downtown, people, and everything. Unlike most Texans, I love cold weather and can not stand the 8 months of extreme heat and humidity in TX. My wife made the first January trip with me, and we were sold on Denver. Unfortunately, my mother-in-law passed away in February when job offers were finally starting to come in. My wife surprised me about 3 months ago in saying that she was ready to move to Denver. My October trip really sealed the deal: beautiful scenery and weather, great golf, and got to explore the mountains a bit.


PERSPECTIVE: I feel more assured about moving after visiting four times and putting so much thought into it. I know there will some bumps along the way, as we move away from our friends and family. However, I feel like a kid on Christmas thinking about all the things that will be a substantial upgrade in Denver: weather, laid-back attitude, excellent downtown that stays alive at night/weekends, nightlife, scenery, four seasons, mountains, skiing/mountain-biking/hiking, day trip & weekend trip possibilities, golf, brew pubs, excellent suburbs and city neighborhoods, and so on. We get really excited when looking at the Denver photos on this site. I really like the people of Colorado also: friendly, but not as overbearing as Texans tend to be. We are hoping to move in February, but we recently decided to move in late April with or without jobs. By then, we should have enough $ to live well for 18 months. I am confident that the job market will start to pick up in a couple months though (oil/gas).

Am I looking at things the right way? Is there anything major that I am not considering? Thanks in advance.

Last edited by longknocker02; 12-27-2008 at 11:21 AM..
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Old 12-27-2008, 11:07 AM
 
Location: Denver, CO
3,530 posts, read 8,721,583 times
Reputation: 840
Your post was super long so I skipped some of it. Here's my opinion:

I think that when making a big move such as the one you are considering, the best attitude is preparation and open-mindedness. Know that moving won't be easy and it'll take some time to acclimate. Also be prepared in things like finances, and also have steps already prepared for what to do if...

That's how I look upon it anyway. It sounds like you've done tons of research, and there's only so much one can do before actually making the move. Good luck to you.
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Old 12-31-2008, 04:57 PM
 
291 posts, read 805,494 times
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The fact you've made multiple trips has definately given you an advantage. Once you make the move, I would try to be centrally located because you don't have jobs, yet. Even though Denver is a "big" city it's easy to get around in except when you have a job at the other end of town from where you live. The fact you're young would make living near the city center fun as it would place you close to lot's of activities, but since you're talking about starting a family in a couple of years will most likely change your focus. By then, you may be wanting to move away from the city center into some of the out laying areas of Denver or the Suburbs, themselves. Thinking of the kids first has a way of doing that. If you do look at suburbs, I think you may want to look at the ones on the west side of town. They have more character, good access via C-470, loaded with younger families, plus closer to the mountains. I live in Ken-Caryl Ranch and you can see some photos of the community on my photo albums. Highlands Ranch is newer, larger, and will give you a closer to jump to the Tech Center, if that's where your jobs end up being. There are other areas in Jefferson County that would also be very suitable for bringing up childern but they are too many to mention. Good luck in your move!
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Old 12-31-2008, 05:04 PM
 
35 posts, read 140,759 times
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You should try Boulder. It's closer to the mountains and smaller than Denver and it's a great, safe, and happy place to raise children!
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Old 12-31-2008, 07:18 PM
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
86,889 posts, read 102,301,239 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by longknocker02 View Post
Am I looking at things the right way? Is there anything major that I am not considering? Thanks in advance.
I think you've got your ducks in a row, but I'd make your expectations a little more realistic. The people may not be any friendlier than the ones you know in Texas, the day trips may not materialize if you don't have a job, that type of thing. I'd start looking for work ASAP, too.
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Old 01-02-2009, 01:17 AM
 
21 posts, read 38,965 times
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Thanks to all for the feedback.

Jerry Bckr,
Thanks for bringing up some great points. We are probably going to rent for about 6 months before buying a house. We are considering Cherry Creek, a couple of the neighborhoods near downtown, DTC area, and Lone Tree/HR for rent spots. Most of the companies I am looking at are in downtown, and a few are in DTC. I'd love to be close to downtown to take advantage of the nightlife, entertainment, etc. while we are still free from kids. How much of a price difference should we expect between Cherry Creek and HR/Lone Tree for a 2-BR Condo or Townhouse? A couple hundred dollars? We are hoping to stay around $1500.

We will likely buy in HR/Lone Tree or closer to DTC. I really love Jefferson County, and my wife lived in HR for five years as a kid.

Katiana,
I am not expecting the people to be any nicer, but I do think it will be a nice change of pace. I have a ton of business contacts in Denver, as well as a good recruiter that is of the opinion that hiring should pick up in the next couple of months. It is comforting to know that an April move would allow us to live comfortably ($4,000/mth) for 1.5 years in the crazy event that neither of us worked at all. I can also day trade full time while looking for a job, if necessary, and this would likely allow me to earn enough to support me and my wife (I have a niche market that has been good to me).

cpm,
I will look into Boulder when we get to CO. We visited once and liked it.
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Old 01-03-2009, 09:37 AM
 
97 posts, read 233,725 times
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I would suggest looking at the southern communities in Denver, Littleton, Highlands Ranch, Lone Tree, Parker. They are very family oriented with lots of activities, rec centers, hiking trails and good cost of living.

I'll agree Boulder is beautiful, we also like some of the great restaurants there, but I have to caution you, the general political climate is exceedingly intolerant if you do not share a leftist viewpoint. It is composed predominately of either college students or wealthy white liberals who do not appreciate any viewpoint other than their own, or parallel. There is a superficial stance of tolerance, but read the Denver Post about people who had their cars vandalized, windows broken in their homes for having a McCain sticker or sign visible. Shameful, most communities are not that way, but when an area becomes so convinced of its utter superiority and self righteousness, there is no room for dissent. Boulder is very expensive because of the "I've got mine, but you can't have yours" philosophy, i.e. onerous zoning requirements that limit the availability of homes so only the very wealthy or poor (multiple families) can afford to live there. My wife and I lived in Santa Barbara for a couple of years and found the exact same mentality, beautiful area, oppressive politics that keeps an unspoken, but very obviously strong class system.

I prefer communities that embrace the middle class,and create opportunities for them to live decently and allow a variety of viewpoints with fear of violence and without political oppression.

Last edited by jkanderson521; 01-03-2009 at 09:50 AM..
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Old 01-03-2009, 01:28 PM
 
34 posts, read 119,755 times
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I'd say go for it. You only live once Its good that your going to rent first. Get a feel for the different areas, then put your roots down.
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Old 01-03-2009, 10:00 PM
 
21 posts, read 38,965 times
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jk,
I am aware of Boulder's reputation, so I doubt I would ever live there. But it does seem like a fun place to visit every once in a while. The southern burbs definitely seem suited for me.


palmtree,
Thanks for the vote of confidence. I will miss things about my home state, but there are so many things in CO that interest me. I would be fine if I never experienced another 82*/humid January day like today in Houston.
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Old 01-04-2009, 12:05 AM
 
Location: O'Hare International Airport
351 posts, read 539,589 times
Reputation: 201
The economy is better in Houston (and Texas more generally), it's a lot cheaper there, you're close to the ocean, and don't kid yourself--even if you think you like cold weather you haven't experienced weeks and weeks of it like you'll get here.

Other than that, Denver's a great place to live and raise a family. Good luck on your decision.
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