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Rent vs Buy in Denver : Real Estate Advice

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Activity 8
Fri Dec 13, 2013
Joseph Sobin answered:
As a broker and PT home-based travel agent I hope I can provide some insights.

In metro Denver most bricks and mortar travel agencies are based in office buildings. While in the past we did have many street-fronting agencies, as the industry has changed so too has the pro-forma concerning space requirements. As a broker in NY as well as CO I am well aware of the old-line agencies i.e. Valerie Wilson, ProTravel, Liberty and so forth have commercial/street locations. However these are in areas of high-density and pedestrian traffic.

In Metro Denver you may wish to concentrate on areas of high pedestrian and/or high vehicular traffic to enhance your existing book of business. If you are concentrating on deluxe and luxury travel, consider Cherry Creek North where occasionally smaller spaces come available in mixed use buildings. I am also a fan of neighborhood retail/office with high-end demographics i.e. Old South Gaylord, Old South Pearl and others for which an experience broker will know how to contact landlords direct. Many of these options have retail on the first floor and office above.

Concerning office buildings, I always suggest a ground floor location when possible to capture not only the office tenants but visitors as well. Please note with traditional office buildings, you may have some issues with weekend access.

Strip centers can be a good option if it offers complementary tenants i.e. those for which your target demographic also shops. There are such strips on Leetsdale, Colorado Blvd (check out Century 21) and others. Rent will depend on visibility and location, however your business most likely will be somewhat targeted and not need direct street visibility yet signage would be important.

Finally putting on my business consulting cap, consider auxiliary amenities or partnerships including luggage, adaptors, tags, guides and other travel associated products. I know I have personally been stymied trying to find TSA approved luggage locks out here or unique name tags for luggage.

If I can be of any assistance as I partner with a commercial broker as well, my contact information is below as well as additional links.

Joseph Sobin, Broker Associate, ERA Herman Group,Cherry Creek North.
Direct Email:
Phone: 303-756-2999

Travel Column:
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Wed Nov 6, 2013
Ritchy Haynes answered:
In Denver it is currently estimated that it is 66% cheaper to own than it is to rent! Although your payment may be a little higher or real close to your current rent, depending on size of down payment, rate, taxes, etc.; the tax benefits of home ownership would definitely outweigh any difference in price ... more
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Wed Nov 6, 2013
Ritchy Haynes answered:
I predict that the trend of increasing rents will continue as the housing market continues to improve. Many suburbanites are now relocating to the city and with Denver booming it is a choice location! ... more
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Fri Aug 26, 2011
Suz A answered:
||||||||||| UPDATE |||||||||

Forbes offers some helpful information on this subject. ... more
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Sat Jan 1, 2011
Daniel Breslin answered:
We are the rent to own real estate brokerage brand and look forward to working with you soon. The timing in the market is perfect for what we are doing now.
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Sat Nov 6, 2010
Bob Gordon answered:
What did you decide to to? I'm very curious to hear the outcome. BTW, The Case-Schilling Index has Colorado pegged as an Up state - good long term news. How much did you rent the condo for? Where did you buy your house? - please let me know, I'm sincerely interested. - Bob ... more
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Mon Jul 27, 2009
Colobludvl answered:
Hey Titansfan,

I'm a homeowner, not agent/broker etc. We are looking to rent out our current home and buy a new home. We are located in a great neighborhood in Aurora. The catch is that we will probably want to sell this house in Aurora in the April to May timeframe. It may be a win-win for both of us. You can rent for 6-8 months while you have time to look at places in the Aurora and Metro Denver area. We can sell when you find a new home, or maybe you end up wanting to buy our place.

If you're interested in talking about it, email me at

Take care
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Wed Jun 25, 2008
Joetta Fort answered:
What an excellent question!

Personally, I wanted to buy a house as soon as we could, and have lived in our own house ever since, in 3 different states. I didn't like renting, because we weren't allowed to do so many things we wanted to do, and because we didn't have the huge tax benefit that owning provides.

I have a one-page explanation and comparison of the monetary aspects of renting vs. buying that I'll send you if you want!

But I always suggest people start by thinking about how much they can afford. Then, contact an agent and see some homes in the price range that allows. Some agents won't show you homes until you're pre-qualified, but I will (in the interest of education. I believe knowledge is power).

I wonder if you're renting now? The reason I ask is that I have a couple of rental houses in Westminster and what I'm hearing is that rents are going up, and it's hard to find a place in decent shape. That's another thing - if you get a fixed loan, your payments can't be arbitrarily raised every year like a landlord can do (if taxes or insurance go up, your payment will increase slightly).

There are a lot of other things to consider, too - like how long you plan to stay put? But I'd prefer to chat as we're out looking at homes, so let me know if you're up for that!
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