The Denver metropolitan area is a hub of commerce and culture populated with luxury properties and endowed with unparalleled natural beauty. Finding your dream home in this sought-after market can be stressful, and missteps will waste your time. Before scrolling through Denver property listings
, consider what factors are essential to your home search. The following questions will help you find answers that will point you in productive directions and help you house hunt effectively.
Have you hired the right realtor?
Hiring a real estate agent with deep knowledge
of Denver homes for sale is an essential factor in a successful home search. Your interests will be best served by a realtor with the wisdom to help you formulate personal real estate goals and the business acumen to help you achieve them.
How much space will you need five years from now?
If you’re considering having children, or having more children than you do now, the houses you include in your search should offer enough bedrooms for everybody who'll be part of your family in five years. If you think you might need a live-in caregiver for your children, be sure to include a bedroom for them. Turn that reserved space into a homework room
or a playroom if you wind up not hiring a live-in caregiver.
If you’re an empty nester downsizing from a large house, make sure the properties you include in your home search offer ample space for entertaining your friends and hosting overnight visitors. Otherwise, you might wind up buying a home that cramps your style.
Even if you don’t currently need a home office, it’s wise to search for houses with a study or flex space. In the coming years, you may start a job entailing at least some at-home work.
Is an easy commute a top priority?
If you have a hybrid work schedule or a full-time job at an office in Denver’s Central Business District and you’d like your commute to be short, here are three examples of neighborhoods you should include in your home search.
If you envision sleek, spacious luxury condos when you dream of home sweet home, LoDo
, which is short for Lower Downtown, could be an ideal place for you to live. Denver’s oldest neighborhood is filled with historically significant commercial buildings from the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Nearly 100 shops, galleries, restaurants, clubs, and hospitality venues populate LoDo, along with Coors Field, the home of Major League Baseball’s Colorado Rockies.
Right across the South Platte River from LoDo, a section of the Highlands
known as LoHi is filled with galleries, restaurants, coffee shops, and rooftop bars. LoHi, which is short for Lower Highland, features a mix of ultramodern designs, elegant condos, and historic houses in Denver Square. You can walk from LoHi to the Central Business District’s 16th Street Mall via the Highland Pedestrian Bridge.
Urbanist and activist Jane Jacobs believed walkable neighborhoods where you can stroll to restaurants, shops, and open spaces are key components of thriving cities. If you share her love of walkable neighborhoods, North Capitol Hill belongs on your house hunting map. This neighborhood, which is also known as Uptown
, is situated just east of the Central Business District. Homes include luxury condos and stunning Victorian row houses. A beloved Restaurant Row is situated on 17th Avenue, and great bars and restaurants line Colfax Avenue.
How patient are you?
If you’re a person with reserves of patience, you can broaden your Denver real estate search to include properties that need updated kitchens and bathrooms or new roofs. These additional projects are sometimes needed to complete otherwise gorgeous luxury homes, especially if their owners have held onto them for many years.
Do you have school-age children?
If your children will be old enough to attend school in the next five years, a major focus of your home search should include neighborhoods with schools that offer rich educational experiences.
Denver public schools’ enrollment guides
can serve as a starting point for your research. The U.S. News & World Report K-12 Directory, which offers data about public and private schools, is another research resource. You might also find it helpful to read Chalkbeat
, a news website that covers education in Colorado and seven other U.S. communities.
Denver public schools’ website provides boundary maps
where you can find the neighborhoods of the schools you’d like to live near. Denver public schools must guarantee students in kindergarten through 12th grade a seat in a specific school if they live within the boundary. Instead of single-school boundaries, some parts of Denver use enrollment zones that contain several schools. Children who live in an enrollment zone are guaranteed a seat at a school in that zone but not any particular school.
Do you think owning a historic home is a privilege or a burden?
Denver has more than 50 local historic districts, and many of them are populated with lovely homes. When you buy one of these historic homes, you become a steward of the city’s past.
One of the advantages of owning a home in a historic district is that, thanks to Denver’s Preservation Ordinance, you can be confident the houses surrounding yours will retain their essential character and charm for years to come. Another advantage is that when you renovate your property, you could be eligible for a Colorado State Preservation Tax Credit that allows you to offset your taxes on a dollar-for-dollar basis.
If you decide to include local historic districts in your home search, here are three significant options.
The Country Club Historic District
, whose development began in 1905, features grand and gracious homes and mansions in Colonial, Gothic, Mediterranean, Tudor, and other classic styles in a park-like setting. Well-known Colorado architects, including William Ellsworth Fisher, Temple Hoyne Buell, and Jules Jacques Benoit Benedict, designed the houses in this district, which has been considered one of Denver’s most prestigious neighborhoods for more than a century.
- The East Seventh Avenue Historic District features homes constructed mostly from the 1890s through 1930. Mansions were built on corner lots, and large homes were constructed along the neighborhood’s parkway after its 1912 creation. A Denver Square-style home in this historic district was known as the Summer White House during Dwight D. Eisenhower’s presidency as he and his family spent their summer vacations at the property.
- The Baker Historic District, whose development started in 1873, features Queen Anne, Victorian Eclectic, Classic Cottage, Denver Square, and Bungalow homes constructed in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Prominent Denver architects William Lang and Marshall Pugh designed houses in this district.
The privilege of owning a home in a Denver historic district comes with obligations. You must follow specific design guidelines to construct an addition to your house or alter its exterior with a roof replacement, new siding, or other changes. The city’s Landmark Preservation Commission
must review and approve your plans. If this process seems too burdensome, don’t include local historic districts in your home search.
How long do you plan to live in the house you’re buying?
If you’re planning to trade up a few years after you buy the house you’re hunting for, focus your search on neighborhoods where property values are likely to appreciate rapidly. Your real estate agent can help with a market analysis.
The need to find a home whose resale value is likely to increase quickly is less urgent if you’re hunting for a forever home — one you want to hold onto as a treasured asset for a long, long time.
Do you crave proximity to green space?
If living near a park is one of your top priorities, here are some of the neighborhoods you should include in your home search.
The neighborhoods of City Park and City Park West have an extraordinary amenity: scenic City Park, which was established in 1882. The park occupies more than 300 acres. In addition to lakes, a meadow, and sports facilities such as tennis courts, the park is the home of the Denver Museum of Nature & Science
and the Denver Zoo
. The zoo opened in the 1890s with a collection consisting of just two creatures, an eagle and a bear.
Cheesman Park, a neighborhood filled with lovely mansions and historic homes, is the setting of an 80-acre recreation site with the same name. The scenic park
features a neoclassical pavilion. The park’s design, which consists of a vast lawn encircled by a road and perimeter plantings, was inspired by the Long Meadow at Prospect Park in Brooklyn, New York. As an appealing bonus, the 24-acre Denver Botanic Gardens
is right across the road from Cheesman Park.
The sought-after neighborhood of Washington Park is home to a 160-acre green space also called Washington Park. This beloved recreational facility
, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, features two lakes, two formal gardens, a meadow, and historic structures, including a boathouse built in 1913.
The sought-after Sloans Lake
neighborhood features 290-acre Sloan’s Lake Park. The 177-acre lake, where park visitors now enjoy boating and water-skiing, was accidentally created by Denver homesteader Thomas Sloan in the 1860s. While digging an irrigation well, he hit an aquifer that flooded his property. The lake that resulted was nicknamed “Sloan’s Leak.”
How fast can you move forward when you find your dream home?
With strong demand for Denver properties
, headstrong buyers stand a better chance of being the winning bidders for homes they love. It’s best to be pre-approved for financing and have everything in order to quickly put in an offer when you find the property that’s right for you. If you currently own a home that you need to sell in order to make a property purchase, you should sort out the details with your real estate agent.
Are you ready to start house hunting?
After you’ve determined what factors are most important in your home search, you’re ready to begin house hunting in earnest. Denver real estate agent Jason Sirois
can help you streamline your home search. His in-depth knowledge of Denver luxury homes for sale will serve you well. Contact Jason today