Compared to many other states in the U.S., Colorado has all the characteristics that make it a charming, fun, and desirable place to call home. The state is home to some of the best schools in the country, has amazing craft beers, mountains, wildlife, legal marijuana, and the state ranks #2 for best health and dog lovers. If those things aren’t enough to excite you, perhaps knowing that Colorado ranks #2 for happiest people may do the trick. It’s well-known that Colorado is a great place to live, but it’s also no secret that it’s expensive. The fact that the state’s growth rate continues to climb at enormous rates doesn’t make it any cheaper. Before packing your bags and moving to Northern Colorado, learn the most affordable and most expensive places to relocate with the help from the list below.
Most Affordable Places to Live in Northern Colorado
Hands down, Greeley is one of the area’s most affordable locations to call home and by many standards, an amazing place to live. Greeley is described as ‘city meets country’ and there is no shortage of activities to suit all interests and ages. Homes average a price of $218,000 in Greely, a price that’s $80,000 less than the average price of a single-family home in the state. It’s not only buying an affordable home. Renting in Greely is also affordable, with the average median rental rate for a two-bedroom costing $280 less than Colorado averages. Greely has little to no crime so residents sleep well at night which is important since there is a long commute to work for many residents.
Westminster is a northwest Denver suburb. Approximately 113,000 people call Westminster home. There is a bustling downtown with so much to see and do and plenty of open space in the area. It’s a nice break from the hustle and bustle of the city streets and costs considerably less to live here than in Denver. Low cost of living, great employers like Dish Network, and proximity to Denver are among the highlights of living in Westminster. The average commute is about 55 minutes, which is longer than average, but most people don’t mind the drive.
Loveland is situated on the foothills of the Rocky Mountains. The town has more than 300 days of sunshine per year. Many rank Loveland as the best place to live in Colorado due to its low crime rates, great educational system, affordable housing, and friendly neighbors. Young couples especially thrive in a town like Loveland, where a one-bedroom apartment rents for an average $765 monthly, $100 less than average rental rates for a comparable apartment in the state.
Most Expensive Places to Live in Northern Colorado
Fort Collins, situated about an hour north of Denver, is the fourth most populated city in Colorado. The area is a nature-lovers paradise with over 600 acres of parks and 40,000 acres of natural habitats. There is a low crime rate in Fort Collins, great public schools, and friendly neighbors who warmly welcome one another. Fort Collins also offers plenty of hiking trails. Employers in Fort Collins include Hewlett Packard and Aneser-Busch. Fort Collins has a great job market, but also a higher cost of living margin than many other cities in Northern Colorado.
Estes Park is a family-friendly community sitting more than 7,500-feet above sea elevation. There are many outdoor activities for families to enjoy in Estes Park and of course, great public schools. Nerdwallet ranked Estes Park as the #4 Best Place to Start a Business and Smithsonian named the town as the #1 Best Small Town to Visit in the U.S. All of this enjoyment comes at a price. Estes Park is expensive, with the average single-family home priced at $453,000 -with rates only expected to rise.
Boulder is a fantastic place to live for anyone that enjoys a sophisticated way of life, but it’s also expensive. The average median price to buy a home in Boulder is $600,000 while rents in the area are 4-5x higher than in comparable Colorado cities and towns. If you don’t mind the expense, you will love life in Boulder. For the added money, Boulder offers some of the best schools in the state, amazing skiing, beautiful mountain scenery, and lavish homes that house some of the who’s who of the state.
There is so much to consider when moving to Northern Colorado. Perhaps some of your moving woes dissipate now that you know the most expensive and the least expensive areas in the state. It’s still a big decision to pick and choose the place that you’ll call home when the state offers so many amazing choices, but there is no question that whatever your decision, you cannot go wrong in Northern Colorado. Checkout the home buyer’s guides if you’re new to property hunting, otherwise get started on your Colorado property search.