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Having spent most of my twenties in Manhattan and Brooklyn, I’m well aware of the outsize role real estate can play in the lives of city dwellers. Even as a recent college graduate, with a salary that sometimes left me unable to afford subway rides, I would pore over the listings in the New York Times and dream of the airy Tribeca apartment I’d someday inhabit. I’d pop into open houses on weekends to ogle homes well out of my price range—and judging from the number of other people doing the same, it was clear these absurd fantasies about out-of-reach abodes had become fetishistic. Of course, Denver’s residents haven’t gone quite as crazy about real estate as those in places like New York City and San Francisco, but given the sizzling market in the Mile High City, it may not be long before they do. With buyers making over-asking-price cash offers less than 24 hours after a sign hits the front lawn, it’s difficult to know up from down these days. So 5280 articles editor Natasha Gardner dug into the local scene (“Everything You Know About Denver’s Real Estate Market Is Wrong”) to figure it all out. “We asked more than a dozen experts how to best navigate the new landscape,” Gardner says. “What we learned is although the market is as competitive as you’ve heard, there are ways to find a house you’ll love.” Gardner compiled 13 rules that demystify the process, explain how to use technology to your advantage, and provide strategies for where and when to look. The most important thing, though, may be managing your expectations. Finding the perfect place to live has never been easy—but Gardner’s feature will no doubt be an invaluable guide as you search for your Denver dream home.