From a mountaineering/access to peaks perspective, what is the best place to live in Colorado?

Items that do not fit the categories above.
Forum rules
Please do not use this forum to advertise, sell photos or other products or promote a commercial website. For more details, please see the Terms of Use you agreed to when joining the forum.
User avatar
Barnold41
Posts: 234
Joined: 9/8/2016
14ers: 12
13ers: 9

Re: From a mountaineering/access to peaks perspective, what is the best place to live in Colorado?

Post by Barnold41 » Thu Mar 18, 2021 8:54 am

We live in Edwards but I work in Eagle (I'm a teacher). My wife has always worked remotely as an artist/graphic designer/entrepreneur and she also teaches some fitness classes here in Edwards. It's about 30 miles RT for my commute, which I don't think is too bad considering I drove more when I lived in KC. When we moved here almost 10 years ago, housing/rental prices were significantly lower than what they are now. Our first condo in Edwards was a little over $200k and now those same condos are going for about $400k, and prices continue to rise. You definitely pay to play in the mountains.
User avatar
JTOlson26
Posts: 446
Joined: 4/21/2009
14ers: 17
Trip Reports (1)

Re: From a mountaineering/access to peaks perspective, what is the best place to live in Colorado?

Post by JTOlson26 » Thu Mar 18, 2021 9:09 am

Chicago Transplant wrote:
Wed Mar 17, 2021 6:29 pm

People turn down jobs up here because they can't find a place to live...
Bingo.

I am a high school teacher and coach and when I was first job-searching in 2013 I had an offer from Eagle Valley High School. It was tempting, but ultimately I had to turn it down because I just wasn't sure how I was going to make ends meet. I wonder how those schools will fill positions with long-term, committed teachers as the older generation teachers start to retire. Sure, they'll likely always be able to attract young teachers for a couple years, but I have to believe that eventually the honeymoon ends and those teachers will move on to areas where the pay is just as good (or better) and the cost of living is more reasonable.

I know what I'm going to say will come off as arrogant, and that's not my intention, but I think I am pretty good at what I do. I love high school kids and feel like I do a pretty good job of connecting with them both in the classroom and outside of the classroom in cross country and track. I also think that having a stable of dedicated teachers who have 5+ years in the job is good for any school system rather than a high turnover rate. I would think that a high turnover rate is inevitable in the expensive mountain towns moving forward because of the increased cost of living and the lack of commensurate pay increase. I've never been one to beat the drum of "teachers need paid more!" but I do wonder if some places will have a hard time offering good public education for the simple fact that it won't be able to attract/keep teachers in their schools over the long-haul.
User avatar
Chicago Transplant
Posts: 3664
Joined: 9/7/2004
14ers: 57 12 24
13ers: 676 38 34
Trip Reports (64)

Re: From a mountaineering/access to peaks perspective, what is the best place to live in Colorado?

Post by Chicago Transplant » Thu Mar 18, 2021 9:11 am

My commute from Edwards to Avon is 7.5 miles each way. Actually that was the same commute I had in Chicago, but from a time standpoint Chicago was almost 3 times as long in time. I took the so called express bus on Lake Shore Drive, but bumper to bumper traffic was pretty normal. I am sure while the miles are greater in the mountain towns, the stress is higher in the front range and probably the time too. I-70 generally moves at the posted speed up here except when it snows. You pay for the housing and the gas/wear on your car, but its much less stressful in general than city living was.
"We want the unpopular challenge. We want to test our intellect!" - Snapcase
"You are not what you own" - Fugazi
"Life's a mountain not a beach" - Fortune Cookie I got at lunch the other day
spoony
Posts: 64
Joined: 5/3/2015
14ers: 19 12 3
13ers: 4 3

Re: From a mountaineering/access to peaks perspective, what is the best place to live in Colorado?

Post by spoony » Thu Mar 18, 2021 9:18 am

This thread makes me think of the classic ski-town cliché: If you live here, you either work three jobs or own three houses.

This cliche is still pretty accurate, but I think a lot of the growth in mountain towns is driven by the growing ability of the "professional class" to work remotely. These upper middle class white collar workers may not be the same as the ultra rich that own multiple vacation homes or the ski bums that are sleeping on couches and bar tending at night, but the ability of the average well-paid engineer or consultant to afford a nice mountain house and work remotely has increased demand on a limited housing supply.

I live in a non-ski-resort mountain town and housing prices have climbed roughly 25% in the past year. It is great if you own a house already, but things are now to the point where price per square foot is what you would pay in Denver, and that is assuming that you can find even a house/condo for sale. Rents are not much better. The housing problem it makes it very difficult to live here and be a teacher or a nurse. Child care is problematic too.

I just hope the policy makers and the market will catch up to the demand for housing/services without ruining what makes living the mountains desirable.
User avatar
justiner
Posts: 3444
Joined: 8/28/2010
14ers: 58 4
13ers: 138
Trip Reports (26)
Contact:

Re: From a mountaineering/access to peaks perspective, what is the best place to live in Colorado?

Post by justiner » Thu Mar 18, 2021 10:41 am

haha I remember just visiting my Brother in Breckenridge and I immediately was given a job at the restaurant he managed, and paid rent at the place he was living at. Psyched I could afford Breck on $5 with a free shift meal! :lol: Man hold on to being 15 is all I can tell ya.
User avatar
jakethesnake_630
Posts: 26
Joined: 6/26/2020
14ers: List not added
Contact:

Re: From a mountaineering/access to peaks perspective, what is the best place to live in Colorado?

Post by jakethesnake_630 » Thu Mar 18, 2021 11:49 am

From one millennial to another; I work in finance & this is what I always tell people:


1.) BUY the cheapest place you can afford (mortgages are way cheaper than paying rent .. and you're paying YOURSELF .. it's like no one realizes this!)
2.) OVERPAY your mortgage & build EQUITY (within reason & only if your interest rate is lower than others .. for instance I have student loans that have higher interest than my mortgage .. I overpay these instead)
3.) SELL this home and roll the equity into the next, ideally larger or nicer house
4.) Rinse & repeat


^^ this is the magic formula ... owning your home, no matter the size & price, is one of the fastest & easiest ways to build net worth & give yourself more buying power.

BTW, this doesn't even include value increases on your home, which also provide you even more equity & buying power. Home prices in CO should *theoretically* continue increasing for a long time as people continue to move in & supply is tight.

Jake$$$
STRAVA

"To give anything less than your best is to sacrifice the gift"
-Pre
User avatar
Scott P
Posts: 8303
Joined: 5/4/2005
14ers: 51 16
13ers: 41 13
Trip Reports (16)
Contact:

Re: From a mountaineering/access to peaks perspective, what is the best place to live in Colorado?

Post by Scott P » Thu Mar 18, 2021 12:19 pm

jakethesnake_630 wrote:
Thu Mar 18, 2021 11:49 am
Home prices in CO should *theoretically* continue increasing for a long time as people continue to move in & supply is tight.
In much of Colorado at least. We lost a lot of money on our Craig house. House prices have dropped dramatically in some other rural towns in western and Eastern Colorado as well.

Whether or not they are good places to live is another story. I guess if you are looking for a bargain and can put up with the locals they might be. We sold our Craig house two years ago for $149K. This is for a nice house on a 1/3 of an acre nicely landscaped yard. That was a lot less than we paid for it. The same has happened or is happening in a lot of rural Colorado towns.

I know house prices in Nucla and Naturita tanked for a while. For a while Parachute and Battlement Mesa too, but I think they have bounced back since they are becoming bedroom communities for the Roaring Fork and Vail Valley. Houses around Paonia apparently tanked for a while; not sure if they are back up yet.

None of these towns themselves are that great (in my opinion at least), but they are surrounded by a lot of cool outdoor things to do.

I know that home prices in much of Eastern Colorado have gone down, but Eastern Colorado is basically Kansas anyway.
Last edited by Scott P on Thu Mar 18, 2021 12:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.
I'm slow and fat. Unfortunately, those are my good qualities.
nunns
Posts: 1111
Joined: 8/17/2018
14ers: 41
13ers: 4

Re: From a mountaineering/access to peaks perspective, what is the best place to live in Colorado?

Post by nunns » Thu Mar 18, 2021 12:23 pm

I am curious why more houses don't get built if the demand is so high.
I know in some places this is not possible, but surely not everywhere. I see plenty of lots available in some towns and the lots aren't all even that expensive.

Sean Nunn
"Thy righteousness is like the great mountains." --Psalms 36:6
User avatar
climbingcue
Posts: 546
Joined: 10/11/2011
14ers: 58 7 17
13ers: 132 8 9

Re: From a mountaineering/access to peaks perspective, what is the best place to live in Colorado?

Post by climbingcue » Thu Mar 18, 2021 2:11 pm

nunns wrote:
Thu Mar 18, 2021 12:23 pm
I am curious why more houses don't get built if the demand is so high.
I know in some places this is not possible, but surely not everywhere. I see plenty of lots available in some towns and the lots aren't all even that expensive.

Sean Nunn
Biggest problem with building new houses in the affordable range is you don't make any money doing it. So absolutely no incentive to build them, builders are still able to build houses for the $500k and up and they sell. There is much more profit with a more expense homes. No ones wants to work for free.

Places where no one wants to live, and a place that has no jobs will always have cheap housing. The opposite is true for places people want to life and has good jobs.
Consecutive months with at least one 14er, 38 months and counting...
User avatar
Barnold41
Posts: 234
Joined: 9/8/2016
14ers: 12
13ers: 9

Re: From a mountaineering/access to peaks perspective, what is the best place to live in Colorado?

Post by Barnold41 » Thu Mar 18, 2021 3:07 pm

climbingcue wrote:
Thu Mar 18, 2021 2:11 pm
nunns wrote:
Thu Mar 18, 2021 12:23 pm
I am curious why more houses don't get built if the demand is so high.
I know in some places this is not possible, but surely not everywhere. I see plenty of lots available in some towns and the lots aren't all even that expensive.

Sean Nunn
Biggest problem with building new houses in the affordable range is you don't make any money doing it. So absolutely no incentive to build them, builders are still able to build houses for the $500k and up and they sell. There is much more profit with a more expense homes. No ones wants to work for free.

Places where no one wants to live, and a place that has no jobs will always have cheap housing. The opposite is true for places people want to life and has good jobs.
Well said. I have some contractor friends around the Eagle Valley and they say exactly this. They focus their energy on second and third homeowners who want to tear down older places and/or fix up older places, either to live here or to flip for profit.
User avatar
Jorts
Posts: 411
Joined: 4/12/2013
14ers: 21 3 1
13ers: 59 12 5
Trip Reports (6)

Re: From a mountaineering/access to peaks perspective, what is the best place to live in Colorado?

Post by Jorts » Thu Mar 18, 2021 3:55 pm

There are too many of us humans. And Colorado is being loved to death by us. Our beloved state is where California was 20 years ago. To Sean Nunn, would you really want to see new development/increased supply of housing to meet the enormous demand? I've seen enough urban sprawl. Summit County is rapidly becoming Denver West. I don't think the I-70 corridor can absorb much more growth. Seems like it's already beyond carrying capacity just like the planet.
Traveling light is the only way to fly.
IG: @summityinzer
Strava: Brent Herring
User avatar
justiner
Posts: 3444
Joined: 8/28/2010
14ers: 58 4
13ers: 138
Trip Reports (26)
Contact:

Re: From a mountaineering/access to peaks perspective, what is the best place to live in Colorado?

Post by justiner » Thu Mar 18, 2021 4:33 pm

I think the solution is to just produce more water it really is that simple.
Post Reply