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Old 05-27-2010, 02:27 PM
 
2 posts, read 3,901 times
Reputation: 10

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Hello everyone!

I am a married father of 3 boys who will be relocating to the Fort Collins area in the near future. I will be working in Cheyenne, WY, but prefer to live in Northern Colorado. I have family in the Denver area and am looking forward to the move.

We are looking for a 3 or 4 bedroom home in an area with good schools. New or newer would be great, and any available info on builders offering incetives in the area would be a huge help. After doing research online, we would prefer to be in Fort Collins, but are not opposed to other nearby areas if they suit our needs. I have heard good things about Loveland and Timnath. Our budget is up to $280,000, but we would like to be closer to $240,000 or $250,000. Info on any neighborhoods we should look at is greatly appreciated. I also have a few other questions:

1. How bad are the roads during the winter? Do you recommend a 4 wheel drive vehicle? We currently own an SUV, but without 4 wheel drive.

2. Utility rates? What would I expect to pay monthly for gas, electric and water for a 2,000 sq. ft. home? Down here in Texas, I don't use gas, so this will be new for me.

3. Speaking of utilities, are power outages common during bad weather in the Fort Collins area?

4. Do most Fort Collins have basement? I've never had one and am excited about all the things I could do with one (MAN CAVE!!!!!!!!).

5. Are there any builders we should stay away from?

I've enjoyed reading the responses to other posts on this forum and am sure you all will be a huge help. Thanks in advance.
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Old 05-27-2010, 03:01 PM
 
Location: Northern Colorado
698 posts, read 1,706,659 times
Reputation: 688
In Fort Collins, most of the newer construction is taking place on the east side of town. A few neighborhoods that come to mind are SideHill, Maple Hill, and Provincetowne. Timnath Ranch also has many homes that may meet your needs. The school district in Fort Collins generally rates pretty highly across the board, and there is open enrollment (if there is room and the parent can provide transportation) at most of the schools in the district in case you do not like the neighborhood school or if you want a different curriculum. There are many good real estate agents in our area that could help you by sending you specific listings and further neighborhood information.

1. The road crews do a great job clearing the roads most of the time. I grew up here and have lived in Fort Collins much of the last 37 years, and only now have my first 4-wheel drive (only because the SUV my wife wanted was not available without it here). My front wheel drive sedan gets me everywhere I need on all but a couple of days a year.

2. I currently have a 5000 square foot home listed for which the utilities over the last 12 months looked like this:

Gas: High: $220 / month Low: $30 / month Average: $106
Electric: High $115 / month Low: $35/ month
Water: High $58 / month Low: $12 / month
Sewer: $20 / month
Stormwater: $14 / month

Gas will be higher in the winter because most homes are heated that way. Electricity runs more in the summer due to running the A/C. Last summer was cooler, so we only ran ours about 5-7 days all summer.

3. Power outages are rare in Fort Collins. Most of the utility lines have been buried over the past several years, cutting down on the chances of a blow down or of branches hitting them.

4. Most of the homes in our area will have basements. In my last 2 homes, I bought them with unfinished basements, allowing me to design and finish them in the way I wanted. We were able to do some neat media rooms, home offices, spare bedrooms, and rec rooms in them. The possibilities are endless.

5. There is a wide variety of builders in our area, none of which I have personally had a bad experience. As you narrow down the field of possible home locations and builders, I'm sure others will be able to jump in with experiences, both good and bad.
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Old 05-27-2010, 03:47 PM
 
Location: Aurora, CO
6,526 posts, read 10,197,404 times
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Just throwing my 2 cents in here. As someone who's driven that stretch of I-25 more times than I care to count, I personally would not want to commute between Fort Collins and Cheyenne on a daily basis. Not only is it a 45-50 minute commute each way on a good day, but it can also be treacherous during the winter.

A majority of the time, yes, the road is in decent shape, but there are times where I-25 is a skating rink from Terry Ranch Road all the way to Wellington. Add in 40-50mph crosswinds and blowing snow and you're in for the white knuckle ride of a lifetime.

A 4WD vehicle is not necessary; the snow drifts are not usually that high. Additionally, 4WD does NOTHING for you on ice. 4WD is four-wheel-drive, not four-wheel-stop .

They have gates along the freeway from Fort Collins all the way to Cheyenne for a reason. The road typically gets closed once a year due to adverse weather coniditions.

Although it may not be as aesthetically pleasing as Fort Collins, Cheyenne would be a hell of a lot cheaper. There's no state income tax and housing is considerably less expensive. Plus you wouldn't be commuting 400 miles a week and paying for all that gas.
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Old 06-01-2010, 01:02 PM
 
2 posts, read 3,901 times
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Thanks for the responses.

I will have a company car and be using company gas, so the cost isn't a factor. My commute time now is about the same, so the distance doesn't bother me either. If the roads get too bad, I can work from home, so bad weather isn't too much of a factor either. Excellent point by the way on 4 wheel drive and ice. I hadn't thought about that.

I've heard great things about the area and am looking forward to the move. The area I'm in now has not so great schools and crime is getting worse. It is also hot year round. Can't wait to get up north a little!!!

The info on the area and the utilities helped a ton.

Thanks again for your help, folks.
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Old 06-02-2010, 12:27 PM
 
17 posts, read 58,062 times
Reputation: 12
I moved here 2.5 years ago from Texas myself. I found that the drop in utilities was amazing. I actually got a 60.00 electric bill in the summer ( I have never seen that before) The roads in Fort collins are kept pretty decent. I don't go to Cheyenne often so I couldn't answer about that. The cost of housing is higher but I found that the drop in utilities was so much that it made up the difference.
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Old 06-02-2010, 12:39 PM
 
Location: Aurora, CO
6,526 posts, read 10,197,404 times
Reputation: 9757
Quote:
Originally Posted by lobofam View Post
Thanks for the responses.

I will have a company car and be using company gas, so the cost isn't a factor. My commute time now is about the same, so the distance doesn't bother me either. If the roads get too bad, I can work from home, so bad weather isn't too much of a factor either. Excellent point by the way on 4 wheel drive and ice. I hadn't thought about that.

I've heard great things about the area and am looking forward to the move. The area I'm in now has not so great schools and crime is getting worse. It is also hot year round. Can't wait to get up north a little!!!

The info on the area and the utilities helped a ton.

Thanks again for your help, folks.
No problem and good luck. We'll eventually get back to those parts but for now we're stuck in D/FW.

If you haven't done a cost-of-living comparison and would like to do one, send me a direct message. I have a few URLs you can use but can't post them here because it's a TOS violation.
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Old 06-02-2010, 02:21 PM
 
20,840 posts, read 39,059,222 times
Reputation: 19074
Quote:
Originally Posted by bluescreen73 View Post
... If you haven't done a cost-of-living comparison and would like to do one, send me a direct message. I have a few URLs you can use but can't post them here because it's a TOS violation.
It's only a TOS violation if it's a site that compete's with City-Data, i.e., Sperlings or other relo competitor. If it's a 'generic' site like Yahoo Finance, Kiplinger's or Money Magazine or other non-competitor, the links are fine here.
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