Where to Buy (Even) Now
Sure, things are tough around Denver, but good options exist—if you know where to look. We've found 14 neighborhoods offering safe bets in a shaky market. Plus, real estate insiders dish on up-and-coming areas where deals abound.
Cherry Hills Village
Boundaries: Hampden Avenue, Belleview Avenue, Happy Canyon Road, Clarkson Street
The Neighborhood: About 6,000 people call the six square miles of the city of Cherry Hills Village home. One of the most affluent areas in the country, Cherry Hills attracts a fortysomething and older crowd to its multibedroom, multibath, multimillion- dollar, 5,000- to 12,000-square-foot mansions. Prospective buyers can peruse a variety of neighborhoods: Old Cherry Hills Village features older, more architecturally diverse homes with mature landscaping and big yards, while homes in Glenmoor of Cherry Hills often line the golf course. With such an assortment of subdivisions, residents living within just a mile of each other can live in drastically different homes: a large 1940s-built Tudor, a two-story Spanish villa-style home built in 2000, or a five-bedroom Colonial near the Highline Canal built in 1981. Large horse properties are also common. The community meets and greets at the Cherry Hills Country Club, supports the Kent Denver School (one of the more prestigious private academies in Colorado), and enjoys a quick six-mile jaunt to downtown Denver. Although nearly every street in Cherry Hills elicits "oohs" and "aahhs," homes along Quincy Street, just across from Kent Denver School, smack of absolute decadence.
Why It's a Safe Bet: The steep price tags in this semi-suburb keep the typical real estate fluctuations at bay. But a close-to-the-city location, access to Cherry Creek public schools as well as local private academies, an established upper-crust identity, and access to the hiking, biking, and winding equestrian trails of Highline Canal provide market stability as well.
Average Sale Price: $2,016,500; 7 percent increase from 2006 to 2007
Meet a Neighbor: John Stepien
Chairman and Chief Revenue Officer, NAS Recruitment Communications
Neighborhood Resident: 20 years
Loves: "This is a definite community geared toward the resident. We don't have any commercial companies. It is a bedroom community—rural in its scope and in nature but still close to all the amenities of downtown Denver. We are just 10 to 15 minutes from downtown and even closer to the Denver Tech Center."
Doesn't Love: "We are a small community with about 6,000 residents, but we are bordered on three sides by major throughways—Belleview, University, and Hampden. There's a traffic problem and it just keeps increasing. There's also been a lot more commercial business developed in the surrounding communities."
Advice to Prospective Buyers: "Meet the neighbors. Knowing the people across from you and next to you, you get into the community much more easily. There are also the Glenmoor and Cherry Hills Country Clubs where you have an immediate vehicle to meet people."
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