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Old 01-06-2014, 06:30 AM
23 posts, read 40,225 times
Reputation: 12


I am thinking of moving for work, which is located in Greeley, CO.

I am a 28 Single Male with a pooch looking for the best place to live based on the information below.

My income will be $50K+ and will be able to afford $1200 max rent.
I'd like my commute to be approximately 1 hr or less each way.
I ski, so the easier access to the mountains, the better.
Easy access to the outdoors, trails, hiking, lakes, dog parks, etc
A nice downtown with a lot of things to do.
A younger crowd (20's and 30's).
Lower crime (who doesn't)

I don't really care about schools as I don't have any kids. I don't smoke the green. I'm not too political, but my views tend to lean more conservative. At the same time, I don't get annoyed at liberals.

Cities on my Radar in no particular order:

Boulder (1.25 hrs away)
Denver (1.25 hrs away)
Louisville (1.25 hrs away)
Loveland (.5 hrs away)
Fort Collins (.75 hrs away)
Greeley (0 hrs away)

What city has the best combination for what I am looking for?

Thank you!
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Old 01-06-2014, 10:16 AM
22,688 posts, read 41,559,719 times
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IMO start by renting in / near Greeley and have a zero commute.

Even though Loveland is only 30 minutes away, that's an hour a day x 5 days a week = 5 hours commuting each week x 50 weeks = 250 hours a year in the car. Plus gas at $3.50 / gallon.

Living in Loveland will save you maybe an hour on the round trip up to ski country x 35 trips a year (that's a lot of skiing and biking trips) x 1 hour saved = 35 hour saved on mountain trips. Do the math and you're still over 200 extra hours of driving each year.

Living in / around Greeley gives you a base from which you can explore all those cities and the trails and such they hold. Boulder is probably the best spot for those things, but it's way expensive, college-liberal in nature and sets you up for a hellacious commute. Best advice I have is to live in Greeley and drive to Boulder for the food, drink, hiking, biking, etc.

After 6-12 months of renting and exploring you'll be able to make a pick based on your own boots on the ground scouting.

IIRC the two big employers in Greeley are the slaughterhouse / meat packing plant and the University of Northern Colorado (UNC).

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Old 01-06-2014, 04:20 PM
102 posts, read 239,599 times
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Fort Collins is pretty decent for outdoors activities with Horsetooth Mountain and Larimer Park. It would be a hellish commute to/from Greeley though, so use Fort Collins as a nearby place to check out on weekends.

As for skiing, the closest option would be Eldora, outside of Boulder but that mini ski resort is very contingent on hit or miss precipitation. Otherwise brace yourself for a very long drive to the main resorts such as Winter Park, Loveland, Copper, etc... Getting from Greeley to any of those resorts would be at least a 2 hour drive (1 hour to Denver and then another hour to the nearest resort). That is without taking into consideration traffic and road conditions.
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Old 01-06-2014, 06:10 PM
23 posts, read 40,225 times
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Mike - makes sense, but at the same time, I would be willing to pay a little more to be in the "heart" of the action and not have to travel 45 minutes every time. I guess its, "is the city worth the commute" argument.

Now I have commuted 45 minutes to work, 1.5 hrs with heavy traffic, so I am "used" to it. Basically what I am saying is, its not a deal breaker if the city is worth it. Like I said above, about an hour or less each way is ok with me.

Cost of Living, I believe Boulder is a lot more $$ than Fort Collins, and Fort Collins is $ than Greeley. I also dont believe I can get a decent place for $1200. I currently own a 1000 sq ft 2 bed 1.5 bath town-home and would like something close in size. Seems like that more achievable in the Fort than Boulder.
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Old 01-06-2014, 08:24 PM
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
26,371 posts, read 44,160,939 times
Reputation: 30066
Having lived and schooled and worked in all three...

In your situation, I would look to Ft Collins, probably an east / SE side for best commute to Greeley. You can even choose a place near Windsor or Timnath for far cheaper than $1200. (I rent out places in Loveland for under $1000, and they are very nice duplexes)

When I was doing the daily commute... gas was $0.19 / gal. The trip is really simple I usually used a motorcycle (often yr round... I was younger then...) ~ 30-35 minutes to west Greeley if you prefer to live in Ft Collins. (Greeley is fine, but has a 'stigma'.) I went to CHEAPer transportation in 1976... VW diesel (50 mpg) that runs on FREE used cooking oil, or discarded Jet A or heating / used engine oil. Tires / brakes for VW's are far cheaper than my Cummins trucks, and the VW can go 500k miles no problem. (Cummins will be going over 1M). The HEATER and wipers and radio were a BIG upgrade from Motorcycle

If ever looking for a good wife... Greeley will offer up the BEST wholesome choice by far. (farm / rural gals seriously there for School). Take some PE / community classes . Ft Collins and Boulder have the 'flakey' / High Maintenance type if that is what you want. Laramie will have many good picks, but highly competitive for guys, especially Colorado guys. (wear your WY plates and take your pickup with farm fuel tank to Laramie). Low Maint (and VERY capable / no whining) wives are from WY, and Dakotas, they are a top prize and well worth the effort (which is not trivial).

Downhill skiing is a PITA from No Co, (must rub shoulders and fenders with DEN crowd) so consider XC and snowmobile and head to WY!!! I much prefer to recreate in WY, and it is VERY close to Ft Collins to some superb WY (Snowy Range). There was a good ski Area in Snowy Range, but it was closed a few yrs ago... maybe open again. Saratoga is a nice place to Soak (hot springs), and Encampment is WY 'mtn country' at it's best. (with too much beetle kill...sad) (Can get there via Poudre Canyon from Ft Collins). From Ft Collins, I would be heading to Steamboat (or UT) if I had to Ski downhill. Or get a night job and ski weekdays. BTDT, and it was very helpful to ski and work enjoyment. Pays much better... every day is OFF, no commuters on the road (much faster / less time wasted), and no babies (whiners) at work. And Ft Collins traffic lights BLINK at night... no waiting !!!! (ft collins is a {PIT} for waiting / getting crashed at Stop lights. avoid that type of commute.)
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