Home Buying in Lafayette>Question Details

Nsk3783, Home Buyer in Lafayette, CO

Is Erie, colorado or Lafayette, Colorado a better real estate buy?

Asked by Nsk3783, Lafayette, CO Sat Jun 11, 2011

I am looking to buy a house. I have fallen in love with 2 homes - one in Erie, colorado and one in Lafayette, colorado - which one is a better buy?

Help the community by answering this question:


Hi Nsk3783:

Just wanted to check back to see if you have made a decision. sometimes it is fun to see what buyers decide after they have had a chance to look further. Let us know!

Kind regards,
Ron Rovtar
Prudential Real Estate of the Rockies
Days: 303.981.1617
Evenings: 303.473.1926
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sun Sep 18, 2011
Hello Nsk3783,
The spotlight recently shined Erie.

Growth follows the roads. The better the road, the better chance that someone will build next to it.

Where Boulder County and Weld County meet, which is approximately 15 miles west of the interstate, there are a scattering of towns. One of the more interesting towns is Erie.

The community of Erie is not about to remain little.

A developer earlier this year sketched out plans to add 2,700 housing units in Erie. If it comes to pass, the town of 19,000 could grow by almost 50 percent. Here’s a tip for anyone looking for great homes close to the freeway: check out Erie.

As small towns go, Erie is not at the end of some forgotten road. It is very commuter friendly. Along with the small town charm and a municipal airport, there is access and a lot of it. In fact, there are homes there that are connected to taxiways for aircraft. To the East and South, commuters have quick access to I-25 and E-470. More? Only a few miles to the west, commuters can hook up with U.S. Route 287 and quickly travel to Longmont or Broomfield. Colorado 7 offers a straight shot into Boulder. Head east on 7, and find a Costco, Sears and Home Depot. Head west on 470 and you end up at the Flatirons Shopping Center.

Yeah, I’m talking about tiny Erie. It gets better. The Children’s Hospital North Campus is on Colorado 7, east of Erie. There is the Exempla Good Samaritan Medical Center on 287.

Recreation? In addition to a golf course, there is Airsoft (paintball) and a recreation center. Hot air balloonists love the area.

Lafayette is well-situated, too. It has all those things that make it a great community. It has a charming town center with good restaurants. You get more square footage for the dollar in Erie.

It's a toss-up.

You might want to tour the neighborhoods, learn as much as you can about the schools (if you have children) and maybe visit the web pages for both towns. Note that Lafayette is in the Boulder Valley School District (http://www.bvsd.org/) and Erie is in the St. Vrain Valley School District (http://www.stvrain.k12.co.us/).


PML of Longmont, CO
720 810 0683
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sat Jun 11, 2011
Hi Nsk3783:

As others have pointed out, buying a home involves a number of considerations, many of which have little or nothing to do with price. But you may be asking specifically about price. In the current market, it is generally true that you will get more square footage and more finished square footage in Erie. Often the Erie homes will also be newer. Recently I've worked with clients who looked in both areas and purchased in Erie for this reason. I hope this helps.

Kind regards,
Ron Rovtar
Prudential Real Estate of the Rockies
Days: 303.981.1617
Evenings: 303.473.1926
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sat Jun 11, 2011
I agree with the other agents. But personally speaking, I live in Erie and LOVE it. We moved here specifically because of how much house you can get for the money. If you'd like to email me directly, I'd be happy to give you "the scoop" on Erie.
Web Reference: http://www.sallygrenier.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sat Jun 11, 2011
It would be putting it mildly to say many in Colorado feel that regulation has not caught up with the industry on fracking. I'm not exactly neutral on this issue. Erie's air is my air over here in Longmont, too.

Residents of Boulder County have not been silent on these issues. Moratoriums have quickly followed reports of high levels of pollutants. This won't be the end of it. Energy companies have filed a number of permits. Conoco-Phillips and others are seeking to expand drilling in the state, and are moving south.

The state has been active. I'm sure we'll be reading more about this.

Erie is tiny, but it has been known to roar. In the early 1980s, a group of homeowners drove off Union Pacific, a landowner that wanted to strip mine coal there. Activism is effective.

Boulder County residents are vigilant. Only in recent months has fracking become more visible in media. But reports on fracking have been steadily appearing in weekly publications and on the Internet. People are watching. Residents have been delivering hand bills and posting web sites to make sure others know.

Expect to see more developments on this front.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Feb 23, 2012
Concerning Erie, I post the article below without comment. "Fracking" is an issue about which everyone will have to draw his or her own conclusion. It sounds like the city is working on figuring this one out.



0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 22, 2012
Hello again, Nsk.
The complexion of this area is changing. Erie is at a crossroads and Lafayette will be affected, too. In any case, these communities will change. Erie is poised for a lot of growth. Because these areas are just off the freeway and close to 470, too, they will grow.

Some research you can do to get a better idea of what the area will look like is to go to the Boulder County web site as well as the city web sites. Boulder County's open space map:

0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Feb 21, 2012
||||||||||||||||| UPDATE 2012 ||||||||||||||||

If the sound of new construction is unappealing, you might want to avoid Erie. Erie is transforming itself from sleep little town of 20 years ago to a vibrant suburban city.

Some updates for what's happening in Lafayette and Erie:

ERIE -- The Boulder Valley Velodrome, a 250-meter world-class cycling track being built in Erie, could see its first rider by late spring. Its backers say the long-awaited facility would be top in its class throughout the United States in terms of its design and speed.

LAFAYETTE -- In August, the first phase of a 153-unit senior and affordable housing project in Lafayette is expected to open. Boulder County Housing Authority's Josephine Commons will accept its first residents this summer, opening 74 units on a 14.4-acre site at the northeastern edge of town. The units will eventually be part of a larger mix of townhomes, duplexes, single-family homes and apartments.

Just drove through Erie today and it seems like it has grown more in recent years. I drove from Thornton up through Erie on my way home. If you knew this town 20 years ago, you would not recognize it. Erie sits at the intersection of two major highways - I-25 and E-470. Erie has its own airport, too.

of Longmont, CO
720 810 0683
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Jan 1, 2012
Yes, please let us known.

C'mon, Nsk3783. Tell us which city you choose to live in. Or, are you still on the sidelines?

PML of Longmont, CO
720 810 0683
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Oct 4, 2011
Dear Nsk3783,

Erie definitely offers an opportunity to get more square footage for your money and...... generally a newer home. Erie spans three different counties and, depending upon which specific neighborhood you are looking in, your taxes can be higher. Some of the newer areas in Erie are in "Special Taxing District" so it is good to learn in advance if the particular neighborhood and/or property you are interested in falls in such a situation.

If you have school age children, schools will no doubt be a consideration for you. Go on line and check out the various school ratings and see which one you feel most comfortable with.

Both are great communities. Good luck in making your decision. If I can help, please feel free to let me know
Web Reference: http://www.vickieslade.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Jun 11, 2011
P.S. I disagree with Dave's comments about taxes being high in Erie. They are high in Vista Ridge (because of the amenities -- clubhouse, golf course, community center, etc). I live in Boulder County in Kenosha Farm and my taxes are only about $2200/year. (Taxes in VR are in the $3-4K range)
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Jun 11, 2011
I completely agree with the first answer, because the focus of your question could be one of several things. If it's just - which house will I feel better living in, because I got a better deal? Then I would just say, that in very general terms homes tend to get more expensive as they get closer to Denver or to Boulder. So if these two are the same price, the one in Lafayette MIGHT be the better buy.

But if the question is, which home will be easier to sell, should we need to? Then the answer would have to do with amenities such as 3-car garage vs 2, how many square feet in the basement, how large is the lot, privacy, traffic noise, etc. If you're working with an agent, they should be able to provide a trend analysis for you, so you can know if either area is going up in value more.

There are many more twists to your question. Some people might give you a more generalized answer, but this is such a personal decision, only an agent who actually knows you can really advise you.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Jun 11, 2011
Hi Nsk,

There is only one person that can make the decision and that is you. If you are buying the home to live in, look at the quality of life and which home you would enjoy more. Buying an investment to live in does not make sense in this market.

Look at what is important to you:
1) Kids, schools, playgrounds,
2) Commute to work - distance and time
3) Monthly payment versus size and quality of house (taxes in Erie are high)
4) Friends and social activities nearby
5) As an investment for capital appreciation

Why is that important to you?

There is only one main reason you are buying the house and once you figure out why, the right house will be obvious.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Jun 11, 2011
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