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08/13/2015 12:07:44 PM · #1
So, it appears that our youngest daughter may be moving to Denver Colorado in the next couple of months or sooner. I am NOT familiar with the city at all and would appreciate any advice you can give me in helping our daughter (26 years old) in settling into the city. I think I was 12 when I visited last...lol

She is a manager for Bubba Gumps Seafood Restaurant. She wants to be as close as possible to the restaurant which is downtown on California Ave. How reliable is the RDT? Where can I get maps/schedules that I can read? I've looked online and it's NOT user friendly. Her hours will be erratic so she will be commuting all hours of the day.

How much does it snow or ice in Denver? A friend told me "not much"...my reply was "more than Florida". She hasn't ever driven in snow....cringe.

Does anyone know of a Rental Realtor that we can contact?

Any advice will be appreciated.
08/13/2015 12:16:41 PM · #2
I lived there from 92-02, so info is a little dated but its a great livable city. Its a great city, and weather is not too bad. They used to brag that they have more sunny days than San Diego ... which is true, though they don't tell you that many of those days are when its 20 degrees out or less! It does snow, but it doesn't stick around; after a couple days, week at a most, it all melts off. Always snowed on Halloween when we lived there (became a running joke); spring snows are the worst, wetter and heavier but still not bad. RTD was just getting started when we were there but seemed reliable. She should check out Wash Park - great neighborhood filled with old craftsmans an lots of 20- and 30-somethings (at least back then); close to Cherry Creek and not far from downtown. Susan Diliberti was a great realtor in that area ... more for home sales but give her a call, she's great and can probably give her a line on rentals.
08/13/2015 12:24:19 PM · #3
Originally posted by EstimatedEyes:

I lived there from 92-02, so info is a little dated but its a great livable city. Its a great city, and weather is not too bad. They used to brag that they have more sunny days than San Diego ... which is true, though they don't tell you that many of those days are when its 20 degrees out or less! It does snow, but it doesn't stick around; after a couple days, week at a most, it all melts off. Always snowed on Halloween when we lived there (became a running joke); spring snows are the worst, wetter and heavier but still not bad. RTD was just getting started when we were there but seemed reliable. She should check out Wash Park - great neighborhood filled with old craftsmans an lots of 20- and 30-somethings (at least back then); close to Cherry Creek and not far from downtown. Susan Diliberti was a great realtor in that area ... more for home sales but give her a call, she's great and can probably give her a line on rentals.


Thank you very much.

The Cherry Creek area keeps coming up on all the searches. She is looking for a condo/apartment not single home. (she is single) A Couple more areas that we've been told about are Highlands(being refurbished), Lakewood & Capital Hill. Do you know anything about those areas?
08/13/2015 12:44:28 PM · #4
Greater Denver and the Front Range
08/13/2015 01:02:28 PM · #5
Originally posted by Ja-9:

A Couple more areas that we've been told about are Highlands(being refurbished), Lakewood & Capital Hill. Do you know anything about those areas?

Lakewood is farther out; wouldn't recommend that area. Not sure which Highlands you are referring to ... if Highlands Ranch, that is also far out, down south near the Tech Center. We lived down close to there for a while and I commuted to downtown; more a family suburb area that I wouldn't recommend for her. Capitol Hill was up and coming when I was there and close to downtown; definitely worth a look. Cherry Creek had some apartment buildings and condos, but prices will likely be higher there. Wash Park had some shared roommate housing as I recall, more so as you get to the south end of the park, closer to U of Denver. (Colorado Blvd./I-70 intersection).
08/13/2015 01:12:23 PM · #6
Really depends on what style living She likes, every area mentioned has good and bad points, I grew up in Lakewood, it has more of a suburban feel, RTD and RTD Lightrail to downtown are good options. The better areas are closer to the foothills. Golden is just west of Lakewood and might be worth checking out.

Cherry Creek has a mix of suburban and downtown feel depending on the area, RTD options are good not as sure about Lifghtrail options.

Capital Hill and Wash Park areas have some nice older homes and apartments with easy access to downtown, much more of a downtown old suburb feel with lots of younger professionals. RTD would be easily accessible.

Highlands Ranch is suburban, newer but covers a huge area, commute would be a little tougher but Accessible to RTD and Lightrail.

The weather here is intolerable (we would rather not have more people), winter is really not bad, normally a week or two of below zero weather but the rest of the year is nice. a lot of the times it will snow one day and be beautiful the next.
08/13/2015 01:48:52 PM · #7
Originally posted by PapaBob:

Really depends on what style living She likes, every area mentioned has good and bad points, I grew up in Lakewood, it has more of a suburban feel, RTD and RTD Lightrail to downtown are good options. The better areas are closer to the foothills. Golden is just west of Lakewood and might be worth checking out.

Cherry Creek has a mix of suburban and downtown feel depending on the area, RTD options are good not as sure about Lifghtrail options.

Capital Hill and Wash Park areas have some nice older homes and apartments with easy access to downtown, much more of a downtown old suburb feel with lots of younger professionals. RTD would be easily accessible.

Highlands Ranch is suburban, newer but covers a huge area, commute would be a little tougher but Accessible to RTD and Lightrail.

The weather here is intolerable (we would rather not have more people), winter is really not bad, normally a week or two of below zero weather but the rest of the year is nice. a lot of the times it will snow one day and be beautiful the next.


She's a bit of a work-aholic. She works 50-70 hrs a week (I will be glad if something gets put into the labor laws to protect salaried employees...it will help both my daughters!!! Talk about getting their pound of flesh!!!). Might have the 6 am shift might be closing at 2-4 am. But when she has her downtime she likes outdoor activities and exploring. She will often meet up with us when were camping. I'm sure this is going to be a huge adventure for her. Part of the reason she wants to have the RDT as an option for work is that when it is bad she can commute if need be. But what I'm not sure of is if the system closes down say at midnight. That wouldn't work for sure.

All good information
08/13/2015 01:54:57 PM · #8
Originally posted by Ja-9:

Part of the reason she wants to have the RDT as an option for work is that when it is bad she can commute if need be. But what I'm not sure of is if the system closes down say at midnight. That wouldn't work for sure.

If it's an occasional trip and not too far a taxi might be a reasonable option for odd hours, especially if she's saving money by using transit most of the time ...
08/13/2015 02:44:56 PM · #9
There is an enormous amount of new high rise apartment buildings being built in downtown Denver. The city and surrounding area is in a huge growth spurt. It's almost like the every little piece of land anywhere is getting developed. They are scrapping old houses on lots around Denver and building brand new houses. Rent rates are sky rocketing. The further away from downtown, the better the rates and available housing. I cannot believe how full the roads are everywhere the last couple years. Capital Hill and Cherry Creek are very high rent rates. Not sure what your budget is. But it might be easier for her to find something downtown. RTD is in the middle of constructing miles and miles of light rail connections. If she did find something in Lakewood, there is light rail to take right into Denver. I don't know if they run all night but I think they run very late at least. If she found something in Highlands Ranch or Lone Tree, the light rail runs down there too.

Last winter was an unusually cold and snowy winter. As mentioned earlier, the snow usually melts away pretty quickly, but last year it stayed around much longer since it was colder. Typical winters are not too bad. We can get 60 and 70's in Jan at times. Amount of snow varies year to year. Parker and Castle Rock usually get more snow and bad weather because of how the weather systems move in. Summers are hot, but not humid.

There are more multi dwelling units being built in the surrounding cities as well. Where are all these people coming from and where are they working??

If she does not know to drive on icy roads, I would say get something downtown. She might even be able to walk to work. If she does drive, she will need an all wheel drive car. No two wheel drive cars are allowed in Colorado. (;

Golden is nice, but rent rates are high and available units are scarce now that college students are moving back now.

It'll take some luck and good timing to find something affordable and close to her job.
08/13/2015 02:50:50 PM · #10
I ride RTD daily -- it's fairly reliable, and I love not driving and not worrying about weather. For RTD scheduling, just ask google for directions, the click the bus icon:

' . substr('//onetacoshort.com/upimg/a30833d8ff71b9392819e2a6287326de_120.jpg', strrpos('//onetacoshort.com/upimg/a30833d8ff71b9392819e2a6287326de_120.jpg', '/') + 1) . '

Once you're used to which routes you'll use, you can find those schedules on their website, e.g. the GS between Golden and Boulder.

As far as "roads with the worst reputations" -- Federal Blvd and Colfax Ave are notoriously scary (whether it's true or not, I dunno.) But neighborhoods are all different. If I was working downtown and liked living downtown, I'd visit and find a neighborhoods near downtown to get a feel for it. Some areas are just randomly industrial, others are dumpy, and others are quite nice and being renovated.

I guess my question is, does she want to live downtown-ish or in a suburb, and how much commute is she willing to deal with? (I skimmed the thread, sorry if you already answered it.)

Feel free to ask more specific questions, I live in Arvada and work in Boulder -- a much more suburban lifestyle. :)
08/13/2015 03:05:57 PM · #11
She is looking for more (or as close to) downtown living. She doesn't want the suburban lifestyle, more so doesn't want the commute.

I just don't know how one picks a place to live 1800 (plus) miles away!!! I'm a see/feel/smell kind of gal...

Industrial sounds kinda cool...I did find one apt/condo that had that type of feel. And your right...the amount of BRAND NEW buildings is amazing. I found Apartments.com to be a good link to look around. I personally don't trust Craig's list to find something and I don't know anyone personally to see about taking over their townhouses/condo's...

I always tell people that fall in love with Orlando to come visit during Jul/Aug/Sep before they decide to move here...(hoping they will stay away...it's soooo crowded)

08/13/2015 03:12:05 PM · #12
Downtown is a good choice. They have been expanding it to accommodate better living, and have put a ton of apartments in. Cherry Creek is most generally a nice place too, but if she can afford downtown it would be better and not just for the commute.
08/13/2015 03:19:12 PM · #13
Like most cities, depending on how much money she makes, she might not be able to afford any of the close in areas. Capitol Hill, Wash Park, and Cherry Creek are all very nice and very expensive. Each has a different vibe. Wash Park is more residential. Older homes, trees, awesome park, lots of upper middle class families. Capitol Hill is more urban. More apartment buildings and singles, and another awesome park. Cherry Creek is somewhere in between (mostly brand new expensive(!) condos). Of the three, I personally think Cherry Creek has the least charm, but if she has money and likes new stuff, there you are. There's a ton of new construction downtown as well. Lakewood, Highlands Ranch, etc, are farther suburbs. Also, be careful about Cherry Creek. There are two of them, but only one is convenient to downtown.

If I were 26, working downtown, and moving into a city I didn't know, I'd look for a six month lease on a place downtown, then be prepared to move once I got settled and had my own opinions about things.

RTD is one of the more annoying city transit systems I've encountered. Unless things have changed in the last year since I used them, they have a difficult website, and no apps that provide real-time updates. The buses do come with reasonable frequency, but she needs to be prepared to spend some time standing out in the cold or hot (depending on the season). And the drivers *will not* wait for you, even if the bus you're transferring from is pulling up right behind it.
08/13/2015 04:16:49 PM · #14
Originally posted by Ann:

If I were 26, working downtown, and moving into a city I didn't know, I'd look for a six month lease on a place downtown, then be prepared to move once I got settled and had my own opinions about things.

That's probably good advice, if you can't visit ahead of time or stay with a friend for a short while. Oh, and Google street view will at least give you a visual of the neighborhoods -- e.g. area right by the Rockies baseball stadium, area on Speer near REI and Elitches, neighborhood near Cheesman park, etc. I'm sure these areas are all ridiculously expensive. =D
08/13/2015 06:16:11 PM · #15
Originally posted by smurfguy:

I'm sure these areas are all ridiculously expensive. =D


Unfortunately right now everything is really expensive for renters here. There has been a very large amount of renters move in (or foreclose on owned homes) that have driven up the price on a limited amount of rental properties, coupled with landlords selling off properties previously used as rentals due to a rising bubble (mines going on the market this month). It isn't Los Angeles expensive here yet, but it is definitely climbing.
08/20/2015 10:35:08 AM · #16
Well, she is moving for sure (eeeekkkk!!!!). Rochelle will have to report for work on Sep 16th.

My husband (Rick) and Rochelle will be driving a U-Haul Truck towing her vehicle out to Colorado. They are going to be leaving Sep 6th (her 26th birthday!!!). I sadly can not go because of our impending trip to Colorado (planned since last Jan) & Wyoming at the end of Sep thru Mid-Oct.

She still needs to find an apartment, probably Cherry Creek area. Downtown which is where she wanted they just don't have great reviews. One good thing, she has reconnected with a classmate that she had grown up with who lives there (and will be close to her). So that makes me feel better that she will have SOMEONE that she knows out there. My brother also lives in Durango and I know him...if we need him he'll drop everything and head up her way as soon as humanly possibly. His youngest daughter (freshman in HS) just went to boarding academy in Loveland, CO. So they will be passing through Denver occasionally and will make a point to see her. And there is a possibility that her cousin will be able to come for some visits with Rochelle. For me these are all comforts.

She has a Nissan Juke and will be trading it probably for a Subaru Forester (all wheel drive). This also gives me great relief that she will have an all wheel drive vehicle. Does anyone out there now have any recommendations for Dealerships? Around here various ones have more "perks" for bringing your business to them and they have a good reputation to boot...lol.

Well, ok...more information than you ever wanted to know. Thanks again for your continuing help.
08/20/2015 03:08:08 PM · #17
I'm not sure selling her car and getting a Subaru is strictly necessary. Lots of people have 2 wheel drive cars there, and get around just fine. 98% of the time the roads are dry, 1.7% of the time a front wheel drive car can handle conditions, and the other 0.3% of the time everything is going to be closed anyway. When I lived there I had a VW Rabbit, and I got around just fine, even in snow that was so deep I was pushing it up over the hood.

Cherry Creek is probably just fine. I grew up there. There's pretty good transit service to downtown from there, or she could ride her bike when the weather is nice.

Durango is a long, long drive from Denver. There's a bunch of mountains and stuff in the way. But she's 26 and has a job and a sense of adventure, so I'm sure it will all be fine.

08/20/2015 04:53:28 PM · #18
Originally posted by Ann:

I'm not sure selling her car and getting a Subaru is strictly necessary. Lots of people have 2 wheel drive cars there, and get around just fine. 98% of the time the roads are dry, 1.7% of the time a front wheel drive car can handle conditions, and the other 0.3% of the time everything is going to be closed anyway. When I lived there I had a VW Rabbit, and I got around just fine, even in snow that was so deep I was pushing it up over the hood.

Cherry Creek is probably just fine. I grew up there. There's pretty good transit service to downtown from there, or she could ride her bike when the weather is nice.

Durango is a long, long drive from Denver. There's a bunch of mountains and stuff in the way. But she's 26 and has a job and a sense of adventure, so I'm sure it will all be fine.


Durango is more for my Brother to get to her...not vise versa...lol

She's been talking to some people that have suggested that she get some snow tires on her car (not sure if she needs tires yet????) and that her car would be fine...therefore the choice to take the car out vs selling it here and buying there. She'll get a few months in under her belt then figure that part out.

Thanks again Ann...
08/20/2015 06:00:54 PM · #19
Colorado does experience snow and ice on occasion. And, because of the elevation gain into the foothills and mountains, AWD and/or 4WD are very useful. If a vehicle has 2WD, there are chain rules that are appropriately applied during weather events. Yes, flatlanders can simply stay home and wait for better weather. (But, they never do.)
08/20/2015 06:07:27 PM · #20
I was reading this thread and googled living in Denver. Maybe this can add to your info gathering.
Cheers.

YouTube video re living in Denver

Googled living in Denver

08/20/2015 07:35:54 PM · #21
Janine, just out of curiosity is SHE as antsy about this move as you are? I'm imagining her saying "MOMMMMMMM! It's gonna work out fine! I'm a grown woman!"

Mothers: you gotta love 'em. I had one once, and she worried too :-)
08/20/2015 07:46:23 PM · #22
Originally posted by Ann:

Lots of people have 2 wheel drive cars there ...

Yep, 2WD is fine. When I lived there, we used to laugh that after a big storm all the cars that spun out and ended up in the ditch were the 4WDs. (Lot of people with 4WDs get a false sense of security and drive too fast in snow and on ice - the bigger the car, the bigger the problem). I had a 4WD jeep and rarely put it in 4W there -- even when I lived up in Evergreen at 8,500-foot elevation where we got a lot of snow and drove some pretty steep and winding roads.

08/20/2015 08:00:44 PM · #23
If 4wd is not an option, I will concede that front wheel drive with aggressive snow tires and chains for the I-70 corridor would be minimum winter gear. I am originally from flatland Iowa. Colorado has the worst, most wreckless drivers I've ever seen. They drive too fast for conditions all the time. There is no such thing as Driver's Education courses in our CO schools. Parents are responsible for teaching their children how to drive, which explains the source of the problem.

Eta: I use 4WD a lot between October and May, but I live at 8800' and frequently drive to 12000'. The risk factors of driving in the megalopolis of the front range are completely different from mountain travel challenges.

Message edited by author 2015-08-20 20:12:36.
08/20/2015 08:13:46 PM · #24
Originally posted by Bear_Music:

Janine, just out of curiosity is SHE as antsy about this move as you are? I'm imagining her saying "MOMMMMMMM! It's gonna work out fine! I'm a grown woman!"


ha ha...you hear the ansty...where by I'm just trying to help her out to get a feel of what to expect and she's said thank you. Because she was born and has been raised here in Florida in the "very, very" flat land that has NO snow (well, very rarely). As you well know - I'm a planner running by the seat of my pants isn't a pleasant experience for me nor for my children - both of which are more like me than either will admit...well maybe not my eldest...she's been saying since her teens that "I am my mother after all"!!!

I'm more the kind of mom that says..."Fly birdie, fly". I'm really and truly hoping that she will have the time of her life.

Message edited by Bear_Music - parsed quote.
08/20/2015 08:14:22 PM · #25
Originally posted by hahn23:

Colorado has the worst, most wreckless drivers I've ever seen.

I think you mean the most "reckless" drivers -- "wreckless" driving is usually a good thing ...
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