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Old 02-04-2012, 11:04 PM
 
Location: Saint Louis, MO
1,912 posts, read 4,240,045 times
Reputation: 911

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There's a fairly strong possibility that my husband and I will be moving to Denver this spring, and I'm just beginning the hunt for a place to live. Can you help me add to the list of places I should look to live in Denver? Here are my basic wants:

--Reasonably priced rental with nice amenities (dishwasher, nicer kitchen as we like cooking, in unit or in building laundry). I'll define reasonable for us as somewhere around $1000/mo for a larger 1bd/1bath, although we'd love to spend less if possible.
--Easy highway access, and I would prefer public transit access as well, but not totally necessary. Basically, my husband and I will both work jobs that involve traveling all over the Denver area, so public transit is probably not realistic for our everyday commutes, but using it to go out or get to our main office in LoDo would be nice.
--Reasonably easy parking at home for 2 cars. As previously mentioned, we both will likely be all over the area for work. I don't want to come home and drive around for 10-20 minutes trying to find a spot. I would love to get rid of a car, but it's not possible.
--Close to LoDo. We get reimbursed for every mile we drive that exceeds the distance from our home to the office in LoDo. Being close to LoDo means more mileage $$.
--Walkable neighborhood. I'd like to walk out my door and be able to go to the grocery store, get a run in at the gym, grab a tasty dinner, enjoy a few beers, or drop off dry cleaning, without walking say, more than 10 minutes.

In a nutshell, we will both work a ton during the week all over Denver, so it's a lot of driving. On the weekend though, I prefer to leave the car behind, get out of the house, and explore To add a little background, my husband and I are in the 25-30 age range with no kids, both really like craft beer, trying new restaurants, and live music of all sorts. We're more the laid back type than the party-hard type.

Right now, Highlands is the top of my list due to it's proximity to LoDo, and the walkability of the area. I haven't read much about parking being an issue there...is it? That's my main apprehension, along with finding something we like in what appears to be a hot rental market. My husband saw some cheaper rentals near Sloans Lake and in Jefferson Park, how does this compare to the Highlands?

Five Points and Washington Park are also on my radar, although I have to admit I got so excited over the Highlands that I'm a bit fixated!

From what I've read, Capitol Hill seems too tight on parking, so although I considered it at first, it's kind of off my radar now. LoDo itself seems too expensive, and too central business district-y for me. My husband sent me some links to Lowry Park and Cherry Creek apartments, but these areas struck me as more family-oriented, and less central to LoDo/highways.

I'll end with this: we currently live in STL, and I'm looking for something with a vibe similar to Shaw/Tower Grove South, if anyone is familiar. Basically, an area cheaper than the "hot" areas (Washington Ave, Central West End, Clayton in STL), but still has a lot going on, more chill feel, bus access, central location, etc.

Looking forward to getting some feedback and planning a trip to scope out Denver!
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Old 02-05-2012, 08:30 AM
 
Location: Berkeley, Denver, CO USA
15,726 posts, read 23,653,741 times
Reputation: 26975
Trocadero Apartments - Highland's Village Garden
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Old 02-05-2012, 02:26 PM
 
2,755 posts, read 12,159,552 times
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Parking isn't a big issue in Highlands area -- not like Capitol Hill and some other Denver neighborhoods. Most of the apartments there provide parking, and street parking is not hard to find except for the small part of the neighborhood hard by I-25. Parking passes are usually available from the city for residents on streets that have 2 hour parking.

There is plenty of public transit between Highlands and Downtown as a number of major East West bus routes converge on the 15th street bridge. From the eastern part of HIghlands you could just walk DT on the network of pedestrian bridges -- but it is a bit of a hike -- about a mile, less to LoDo though.

As for the Jefferson Park and Sloan's Lake: Jefferson Park is south of Speer but people in Denver tend to lump it in with Highlands. *The original housing stock was and is small compared to highlands proper (which isn't exactly big to start with), so a there's been a lot of teardowns there replacing with townhouses, especially around the namesake park. *Sloans Lake is a nice area but it's probably going to be more family-oriented and further from DT than you're looking for.

Given that you want to be close to downtown and highways -- HIghlands seems like a good fit for you.
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Old 02-07-2012, 11:22 PM
 
Location: Saint Louis, MO
1,912 posts, read 4,240,045 times
Reputation: 911
Thanks for the details, guys! Particularly on parking. Hoping that there are more options out there apartment-wise come April. My husband is making a quick trip out to Denver next week, we're getting excited!
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Old 02-08-2012, 08:38 AM
 
Location: Berkeley, Denver, CO USA
15,726 posts, read 23,653,741 times
Reputation: 26975
Default Fewer, not more

Quote:
Originally Posted by billiken View Post
Hoping that there are more options out there apartment-wise come April.
Based upon current vacancy trends, there will be fewer options in April.
See Denver-area apartment vacancies hit 12-year low for Q4 - Denver Business Journal
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Old 03-13-2012, 10:18 PM
 
Location: Saint Louis, MO
1,912 posts, read 4,240,045 times
Reputation: 911
As an update/end to this apartment hunting story, we ended up finding a place. A few comments, in case anyone cares:

Maybe my expectations were too high, but the Highlands weren't at all what I was expecting. My husband and I concluded that it was too quiet and residential for us, especially given the rental pricing. The part closer to downtown (Lower Highlands?) had more the feel I was looking for, but the rental rates seemed to be just as high as LoDo.

We enjoyed Sloan's Lake and the surrounding area more than we expected. It was beautiful out when we visited, and we took a nice break from apartment hunting to walk around the lake--a ton of people were out doing the same thing.

In the end, we looked at several places: 2 downtown, 1 uptown, 2 near Sloan's Lake, and 1 in Lower Highlands, 1 further into Highlands/West Highlands, 1 near Cheesman Park (we had a busy weekend!). We ended up increasing our rental budget, as well, when I realized under 1k wasn't happening for what I wanted. End decision: 1 bdrm loft downtown. If we weren't so concerned about easy highway access, we probably would've gone with the Cheeseman Park apartment. We almost chose the place in LoHi as well, but I prefer older buildings that have undergone renovation to new buildings--the place in LoHi was new, but felt very cheaply done.

While we were in town, we checked out the Cherry Cricket based on a co-worker's recommendation--the burgers did not disappoint, and Cherry Creek looks like a great shopping area. We also had time to check out a few breweries (Wynkoop, Denver Beer Co, Great Divide), which were a bunch of fun. At each place, we talked to all sorts of people...making new friends doesn't seem very challenging in Denver at all.

We officially move the beginning of April--I'm very excited, and really looking forward to all Denver has to offer.
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Old 03-14-2012, 10:23 AM
 
Location: Denver
103 posts, read 266,366 times
Reputation: 80
Default welcome!

Denver is a fun place.
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Old 03-17-2012, 03:43 PM
 
17 posts, read 30,616 times
Reputation: 10
billiken- I sent you a PM as I have almost the same wants as you so in housing. If you have a moment I would appreciate a reply.

Thanks!
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