Investing in Denver: Best neighborhoods and outlying cities
Prices headed higher in Denver
Unless you’re some kind of prophet, it’s not a bad idea to buy when prices are rising. Rising prices after a prolonged slump are only the beginning of the beginning when it comes to profitable real estate deals. Even though prices have already gone up by double digits in Denver since the depths of the recession, that doesn’t mean they can’t or won’t keep going up—especially if demand stays the same over the next couple of years. With that said, these are some of the best places to buy if you’re looking at real estate in Denver.
5 Points District
Some people would call this neighborhood “Denver’s Brooklyn.” It’s an up-and-coming neighborhood with a very active, conscientious, and concerned community to back it up. It’s one of Denver’s long-forgotten historic neighborhoods, which means there are plenty of ugly, old houses that are just waiting for well-intentioned investors to scoop them up, fix them up, and then rent them to the young people who live there. Although the neighborhood has made great strides to curb violence recent years, there’s still a violent streak running through the neighborhood.
LoHi – Highlands
This ‘hood could be considered 5 Points’ “big brother”—it’s a lot nicer, a lot less violent, and a lot trendier. Prices reflect this. Instead of an up-and-coming neighborhood, this one has already arrived. Some of Denver’s trendiest restaurants operate on the streets of LoHi. It’s home to plenty of persnickety creative types who want to live close to where they work in downtown Denver. Finding ugly houses here is a bit harder, but it can be done.
If you’d rather invest in traditional single-family homes in a wildly diverse neighborhood in the Denver Metro, Aurora might be exactly what you’re looking for. There are plenty of ugly houses to go around in one of the Denver Metro’s biggest neighborhoods. Some parts of Aurora are really nice. Other parts are just brimming with latent value for savvy investors who know how to turn a slight risk into a healthy profit.
If you prefer quiet tenants who will go above and beyond to maintain YOUR property, you may want to look at Centennial. Many people who live in this small, incorporated city just south of Denver are retired, but there’s a young population of well-to-do professionals who just want a nice, quiet place to raise a family who live here, too. You’re not going to take a lot of risk in Centennial, which limits your upside while protecting your investment.
It’s also a small, incorporated city—but it sits on the very north side of Denver. It shares a lot of the same character as Centennial to the south, with one huge exception. Traffic can be brutal at all times of day going from Westminster to downtown Denver on I-25. Many people who work downtown would never think of buying a house in Westminster for this reason alone.