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Old 09-29-2009, 01:01 PM
 
Location: ...in a state of awareness
16 posts, read 25,487 times
Reputation: 23

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Hi there,

We are relocating from a burb of Chicago and are looking at Douglas county because we have school aged children.

We will be a transplanted family.

What are neighborhoods like in terms of attitude in the Denver area.

Specifically in the S, SE, W.

Friendly? Stand-offish?

What is the "friendly-factor" in the Denver region overall?

Thanks!
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Old 09-29-2009, 02:04 PM
Status: "Celebrating 30 years as a Broker" (set 11 days ago)
 
Location: Just south of Denver since 1989
10,877 posts, read 29,283,722 times
Reputation: 7079
Why DougCo?

What do you like or not about where you are now?
What else is important?
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Old 09-29-2009, 05:01 PM
 
Location: ...in a state of awareness
16 posts, read 25,487 times
Reputation: 23
Hello there 2beindenver.

We know we need to aim S, SE, SW

We were told of a high number of foreclosure in N and undeveloped land (for how ever long that lasts)

Douglas was suggested by a Realtor in Denver as having the BEST schools. Do you agree? (I am going to try and make sense of all of the school data this week)

Through all of the looking here and there the one thing I cannot gauge is the attitude of the majority of the population. You sort of need to tt the locals for that sort of data.

What is the “friendly–meter” in CherryCreek versus Parker versus Highlands Ranch, the Meadows subdivision, Douglas versus Jefferson county, the Denver region overall?

IMPORTANT
Excellent schools (but what of the community. Kids learn in many ways)

I DO LIKE
The fantastic school district we are currently in
Building 6ft tall snowmen with the kids (tweens)
Hot summer days and gardening (if in containers so be it)
The thought of no mosquitoes (really? no mosquitoes?)
Walking my dogs 4 miles in the morning
Diversity and genuinely friendly people
Fishing

I DON'T LIKE
Bad school districts
The glacier in my yard Dec-Mar
20mph winds on a -18*day
Mosquitoes
Soggy wet muddy dog paws Mar- May
Narrow minds and disconnected/stand-offish attitudes
Bad drivers

I am ok with spiders, rodents and snakes (after all I am bigger than them) but I could do without bears and cougars. (hmmm rethinking my dislike of mosquitoes for sec…no one has actually had an arm chewed off by a mosquito…)

Ihave been told the population is largely Caucasian, then Hispanic with a large Russian immigrant presence.

We are neither Liberal nor are we Conservatives.

HOUSING
2000-3000sqft with .25+ acres in $280-$400K home price
location is everything I am sure

Seems rarely is .25 acres in new construction even to be had. Google Maps reveals a lot on how tightly homes are placed.

We note that pre-existing homes might be better for us/offer what we would like:.25+ acre lots, up to 3000sqft house, 3 car garage (2 car tandem actually) full basement, fireplace, fence for the dogs (keep critters out and them in)

2 weeks ago Denver was not even on my radar. We are following a job due to layoffs.

I am intrigued by what I have come to learn in this time of your home state.

Lisa - who thanks you for your efforts
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Old 09-29-2009, 05:11 PM
 
20,817 posts, read 39,009,891 times
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Lisa, thanks for all the specifics, that will help a lot in steering you to a good spot.

Be sure to check our index for threads already here on schools, gardening and much more.

Adding new questions to the end of old threads is preferred, it keeps all the knowledge in one place.
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Old 09-29-2009, 05:13 PM
 
Location: CO
2,591 posts, read 5,981,827 times
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That the "best" schools are in Douglas County is highly debatable.

You mention Cherry Creek; Cherry Creek School District is its own district, it is not Douglas. Debatably, Cherry Creek School District is the "best." Arguably, Boulder Valley School District (but that's north by your reckoning?) is the "best." Many schools in Jefferson County district are "best." Individual schools in *any* metro Denver district may be "best."

The rest of what you like and don't like would be pretty much the same anywhere in Denver metro. What else is important to you? Where will you work?
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Old 09-29-2009, 05:55 PM
 
Location: Denver 'burbs
21,805 posts, read 23,039,398 times
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I don't know that any one part of town is any more or less "friendly" - there is really no way to know if you live in a "friendly" neighborhood until you get there and find out - everyone's idea about friendly is different. Same with "standoffish" or "closed minded" -there are those kind of people in every locale and of every political persuasion....all the descriptives you've used are subjective.....My guess is you could find all or none of them in about any town/county/school district in the Denver Metro area.....
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Old 09-30-2009, 07:48 AM
 
5,748 posts, read 10,733,770 times
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Like maciesmom, I think friendliness depends on the neighborhood, even down to the street. I chose badly when I lived in Douglas County (Castle Rock). Our street was very cold with little interaction between families beyond an occasional wave. There weren't any community pools, soccer fields, or tennis courts nearby. Absolutely nothing was walkable, so we were in a car constantly. Our local elementary school was lackluster. On the plus side, real estate was very affordable, and buyers got a lot for their money. The views of the Front Range were extraordinary, and the night sky was breathtaking because there was little light pollution. It was also very quiet there, especially at night.

We now live in the Cherry Creek district (Centennial) and couldn't be happier. I can't walk out my door without somebody I know stopping by to talk. My husband can ride his bike to work, and there are a ton of shaded, paved trails for my kids to walk to their friends' houses. A grocery store is only a couple of blocks away. Best of all, the school is outstanding with lots of parental involvement and experienced teachers. On the minus side, real estate offerings in our current neighborhood are older, smaller, and more expensive than our last neighborhood. Also, because we are surrounded by commercial districts, it's noisier here, especially during the day.

That's my $.02. Take it as you will.
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Old 09-30-2009, 08:41 AM
 
Location: Denver
138 posts, read 547,182 times
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I'm from IL...from the Chicago burbs...and we moved here last year due to job layoffs too. We were sold on the Douglas County schools from our Realtor, but have pulled our kids out of the neighborhood school and they are now attending a charter school in Littleton. Do your research on the schools, but better yet, find a neighborhood that you LOVE, you can always open enroll into another school which MANY people do. Bus service is very limited for the schools, which is something that you might have to get used to coming from IL. So most people carpool, or walk and hence open enrolling into a school that's 2-5 miles away really isn't a big deal.

This isn't the Midwest, so don't expect that friendliness that you find there. BUT there are many transplants and I think it's true that it differs from street to street.

If I can help, PM me. Let me know what area you're coming from and I might be able to point you in the right direction. We were in the same price point and looked all over for 6+ months. We ruled out Parker due to location, it just seemed too far out for us. We loved some neighborhoods in Centennial, but had to give up on it, there just wasn't much movement there. Ended up in Highlands Ranch for now...and it could be worse. At least home prices are lower this year compared to last year. Should open up more options for you.
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Old 09-30-2009, 09:05 AM
 
5,748 posts, read 10,733,770 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thedfly View Post
...you can always open enroll into another school which MANY people do. Bus service is very limited for the schools, which is something that you might have to get used to coming from IL. So most people carpool, or walk and hence open enrolling into a school that's 2-5 miles away really isn't a big deal.
This is an excellent point. I was recently shocked to learn that over a third of the kids in our elementary school are coming from outside the district. As long as there's space and you're willing to provide transportation, you can enroll your children in any school you wish.

Quote:
We loved some neighborhoods in Centennial, but had to give up on it, there just wasn't much movement there.
This was definitely true for us, and it was very frustrating. It took a little over a year of looking to find a house to buy, and even then, it definitely wasn't our dream house. Fortunately, the neighborhood makes up for it, so we settled for a good enough house.
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Old 10-02-2009, 03:48 PM
 
Location: ...in a state of awareness
16 posts, read 25,487 times
Reputation: 23
[quote=thedfly;10983294]I' but better yet, find a neighborhood that you LOVE, you can always open enroll into another school which MANY people do. Bus service is very limited for the schools, which is something that you might have to get used to coming from IL. So most people carpool, or walk and hence open enrolling into a school that's 2-5 miles away really isn't a big deal.



I assume that each school district has its own policy and exact criteria regarding school intradistrict and interdistirct transfers though? So it might be a bit involved? And likely there are times of they school year that requests must be made.

Lisa
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