Renting vs Owning a Home in the Denver Area
From determining the average rent in Denver to exploring Denver real estate—there are a few things to consider when trying to estimate the cost of living in the Denver area. And while costs are high in some neighborhoods, that doesn’t leave you without options. There are also plenty of nearby areas to consider that will offer you the space and flexibility you need to find the perfect home.
General Cost of Living in the Denver Area
Housing is one of many costs that go into factoring in the cost of living in Denver. You’ll also want to consider groceries, utilities, transportation, health, and of course—funds for going out on the town. That said, in general, the cost of living in Denver is higher than in a lot of areas in the US.
Cost of Renting in Denver
The average rent in Denver for an 842 square foot apartment is currently just over $1,600. While that may be high, it’s also possible to pay less if you keep your eye out for a good deal. At least 4 percent of apartments in Denver fall in the $700 to $1,000 range. That might mean settling for a studio though, or an up-and-coming neighborhood.
Cost of Home Ownership in Denver
The median cost of a home in Denver was just over $499,000 in 2020. That’s up from about $426,000 in 2019. The increase in housing costs has been a rising trend in Denver for a while now. According to CNN Money, the amount of housing in Colorado that was affordable to people making less than half of the median income plunged by more than 75% between 2010 and 2016—one of the biggest decreases in the country. In part because of demand and in part because of an increase of luxury homes being built.
Living in Denver Area Neighborhoods
If affording the high prices of Denver seems impossible, don’t worry—there are other options! And not only are they possible by commute, but some of them also offer some of their own sort of charm. Here are just a few neighborhoods that make living in the Denver area possible without breaking the budget.
Aurora is only a 24-minute drive away from Denver, or a 24-minute train ride if your goal in life is to avoid traffic at all costs. There, you can find affordable new home construction with a few more customization options than you might get in pre-existing homes. The overall median cost of a home though is about $400,000.
The average cost of rent in Aurora is about $1,400 for about 850 square feet of space. That’s similar in size to Denver, but around $200 less.
Another popular area for families that brings you close to living in Denver is Littleton. It’s a great spot for new home construction, with median home costs averaging out at about $475,000. And Littleton is only about a 20-minute drive from Denver, or a 33-minute train ride.
But if you’re considering rent, Littleton may not be the place for you. The average rent is almost $1,700 a month. You get more square footage with an average of 944 square feet, but for about $100 more than the cost of Denver rent prices.
Boulder is sort of the sweetheart of the Denver area and it would be weird to have a list without mentioning it. But you won’t be saving any money by living there. In fact, it’s a lot more expensive with the median price of homes hitting at about $880,000. You can blame the high prices on Boulder’s building restrictions, which are laid out in an attempt to preserve as much of the natural land as possible.
Rent prices don’t get much better, with an average monthly cost of $1,900 for just over 840 square feet. However, living in Boulder is exceptionally beautiful if you can afford it.
Living in Denver can be pricey, with the average rent in Denver being over $1,600 and Denver real estate ringing in at almost $500k. The general cost of living in Denver isn’t too bad, though. Grocery costs are a little over the national average, but utility and health costs are actually just below.
That said, exploring neighborhoods just outside of Denver isn’t a bad idea if you’re interested in new home construction or getting a little more space for your money. And the opportunity to commute by train could make it feel a little more like you’re enjoying the perks of living in Denver without the extra costs.
Ready to check out Denver? Be sure to visit new home builders in Denver like Pulte Homes. With over 70 years of experience, you are sure to find a quality new home that is perfect for your family..
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