Special Features

Cheaper than renting? 'Absolutely,' says David Weekley at Midtown, 10 minutes from downtown Denver, Highlands

By Mark Samuelson

David Weekley s Michelle Wood (left), Allison Glover and Ashley Hargrove show off their model, across from Midtown s newly completed retail center and community garden.
A year ago it took a little imagination to see what was coming to Midtown, the new-urban master planned community where David Weekley Homes has sold 80 new single-family homes, ten minutes from Highlands, LoDo, and downtown. Today and tomorrow you can not only tour David Weekley's fast selling models, but see some attractions that were only on the drawing board before: a 12,000-square-foot retail space, amphitheater/pavilion, and a community garden that's already brimming with produce planted by Midtown residents.

"This is not Highlands Ranch," says David Weekley's Michelle Wood, who'll join Allison Glover and Ashley Hargrove in showing you a new home neighborhood that has much better access to downtown attractions than typical suburban areas. More diverse, too, she says; and definitely less expensive.

So much so, adds Glover, that many of David Weekley's sales are going to newlyweds, about-to-be-marrieds and other buyers that were renting before - who have been effectively priced out of the market by rising prices around downtown Denver. Those buyers like the low-maintenance yard size, as do many of the older 'downsizing' buyers that have been purchasing at Midtown from David Weekley.

"We see people who were paying preposterous amounts to rent downtown," Glover says. Their purchase choices are limited to smaller, older homes, or condos and townhomes that have high HOA fees; as opposed to single-family homes they're seeing here - more space, a 2-car garage, a basement (more than 50% of David Weekley buyers are choosing to order even more finished space in the basement up front), and new features and energy performance. The monthly metro district fee, for community upkeep, trash and snow removal, is only $65 a month.

Meanwhile, this is ten minutes from Highlands, ten minutes from downtown. "Many of our residents are going to the same places to hang out; while it cuts their commuting time into downtown," notes Glover. More than a few have one spouse headed for work downtown via I-76 just south, and a second headed up U.S. 36, just north, to Boulder. All of them, she says, like the quick getaway to the mountains from this site.

You can also see some homes headed for early completion, three in September - one a 'Bisque' 3-bedroom, 2-1/2 bath plan, 1,511 square feet plus basement at $350,000; also a 'Magenta' with main-floor master, $390,360. Each comes with a 3-year energy performance guarantee by Environments for Living, front landscape with irrigation and rear fence, and a security system that includes a year of monitoring. If you're a Realtor, you can take a 4% co-op on the full price of any home that closes by Sept. 30. David Weekley has refreshments out today; open Labor Day, too. To reach from downtown, take I-25 north to I-76, then west a mile to Pecos, and north to W. 67th.

WHERE: David Weekley Homes at Midtown, master-planned community 10 min. from downtown; 2-to-4-bed single-family homes with full basement, 2-car attached garage; amenities; 2 homes for early move-in; 4% co-op on any sale that closes by Sept. 30; RTD Gold Rail opens 2016; refreshments today. Pecos St. at W. 68th, Denver; from U.S. 36 Tnpk take Pecos south ¾-mi. to W. 68th; or from I-25 take I-76 west 1 mi., exit Pecos, north to 68th

PRICE: From $322,990, early move-in from $350s

PHONE: 720-838-2206

WEB: DavidWeekleyHomes.com

Mark Samuelson writes on real estate and business; you can email him atmark@samuelsonassoc.com. You can see all of Mark Samuelson's columns online atDenverPostHomes.com

  • Longtime Summit County developer donates water rights to Silverthorne

    The headgate of Sawmill Gulch stems from Willow Creek.Elise Reuter, Summit Daily
    Thanks to a donation by a longtime Summit County developer, Silverthorne will receive a significant increase in water rights because of an old diversion in the wilderness behind Ruby Ranch.
    “This much water could be a significant portion of the overall town usage,” Silverthorne public works director Bill Linfield said. “How the town might use these newly acquired rights is not yet known but will be carefully explored in the coming years.”
    Developer Gary Miller donated 1.833 cubic-feet-per-second (cfs) in water rights to the town, the rough equivalent of 13.71 gallons per second, or 1.2 million gallons per day.
    Sawmill Gulch is diverted from Willow Creek, within the Eagles Nest Wilderness, Linfield said. The diversion, appropriated in 1918, was originally intended for irrigation. “I’ve owned this water for a long time,” Miller said. “I think the town of Silverthorne has done such a great job. I thought, ‘I’ve got the water; they’ve got a lot of people moving into the town.’ I thought the best thing for me to do was to give it to them.”
    Read the full story on SummitDaily.com.
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  • US homeownership rate of 62.9 percent matches a 51-year low

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The proportion of U.S. households that own homes has matched its lowest level in 51 years — evidence that rising property prices, high rents and stagnant pay have made it hard for many to buy.
    Just 62.9 percent of households owned a home in the April-June quarter this year, a decrease from 63.4 percent 12 months ago, the Census Bureau said Thursday. The share of homeowners now equals the rate in 1965, when the census began tracking the data.
    The trend appears most pronounced among millennial households, ages 18 to 34, many of whom are straining under the weight of rising apartment rents and heavy student debt. Their homeownership rate fell 0.7 percentage point over the past year to 34.1 percent. That decline may reflect, in part, more young adults leaving their parents’ homes for rental apartments.
    The overall decline appears to be due largely to the increased formation of rental households, said Ralph McLaughlin, chief economist at the real estate site Trulia. McLaughlin cautioned, though, that the decrease in homeownership from a year ago was not statistically significant.
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  • Auction of Colorado farm and water brought in $12.6 million

    The auction of family-owned Reynolds Farm outside Mead raked in $12.6 million Thursday as farmers, developers and five cities bid for land and the attached water and ditch rights.
    The auction room was packed with bidders, but only 13 emerged from the Larimer County Fairgrounds with a piece of the Reynolds portfolio. Municipalities, developers and farmers all grabbed some units of Colorado-Big Thompson water, while developers and growers signed deals for land.
    The auction was of high interest, given the land’s location in the path of northern Front Range development and the large amount of water attached to it.
    Although the numbers are still preliminary, Hall and Hall Auctions partner Scott Shuman said 276 CB-T units brought in the largest chunk of money, about $7.6 million or an average of $27,356 each. The CB-T units, already trading for high sums, were expected to be the most pricey given their scarcity and the ability to use the water for uses such as agriculture, development and industrial processes, including oil and gas extraction.
    But on a per-share basis, the 15.75 Highland Ditch shares stole the show, averaging $148,900 each for an estimated total of $2.3 million. All the shares were sold to farmers or investors.
    Although CB-T water got most of the attention prior to the auction, Shuman said the ditch shares provide more acre-feet of water than CB-T and are not limited to a specific geography. CB-T water, which is conveyed from the headwaters of the Colorado River near Grand Lake, can be used only within the boundaries of the Northern Colorado Water Conservancy District.
    The 461 acres of land averaged $6,970 each, bringing in roughly $3.2 million. At the last minute, a 50 acres of land and two Highland Ditch shares were added to the auction.

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  • Former Japanese consulate residence hits the Denver market for $4.2 million

    Photo courtesy of Rick Machle, Rockin MediaThe mansion that once served as a Japanese consulate in Cherry Hills Village has maintained much of its 1970s postmodern character, even after renovations were made a few years ago to make the home more energy efficient. The property is on the market for $4.2 million. Photo courtesy of Rick Machle, Rockin MediaThe mansion that once served as a Japanese consulate in Cherry Hills Village has maintained much of its 1970s postmodern character, even after renovations were made a few years ago to make the home more energy efficient. The property is on the market for $4.2 million. Photo courtesy of Rick Machle, Rockin MediaThe mansion that once served as a Japanese consulate in Cherry Hills Village has maintained much of its 1970s postmodern character, even after renovations were made a few years ago to make the home more energy efficient. The property is on the market for $4.2 million. Photo courtesy of Rick Machle, Rockin MediaThe mansion that once served as a Japanese consulate in Cherry Hills Village has maintained much of its 1970s postmodern character, even after renovations were made a few years ago to make the home more energy efficient. The property is on the market for $4.2 million. Photo courtesy of Rick Machle, Rockin MediaThe mansion that once served as a Japanese consulate in Cherry Hills Village has maintained much of its 1970s postmodern character, even after renovations were made a few years ago to make the home more energy efficient. The property is on the market for $4.2 million. Photo courtesy of Rick Machle, Rockin MediaThe mansion that once served as a Japanese consulate in Cherry Hills Village has maintained much of its 1970s postmodern character, even after renovations were made a few years ago to make the home more energy efficient. The property is on the market for $4.2 million. Photo courtesy of Rick Machle, Rockin MediaThe mansion that once served as a Japanese consulate in Cherry Hills Village has maintained much of its 1970s postmodern character, even after renovations were made a few years ago to make the home more energy efficient. The property is on the market for $4.2 million. Photo courtesy of Rick Machle, Rockin MediaThe mansion that once served as a Japanese consulate in Cherry Hills Village has maintained much of its 1970s postmodern character, even after renovations were made a few years ago to make the home more energy efficient. The property is on the market for $4.2 million. Photo courtesy of Rick Machle, Rockin MediaThe mansion that once served as a Japanese consulate in Cherry Hills Village has maintained much of its 1970s postmodern character, even after renovations were made a few years ago to make the home more energy efficient. The property is on the market for $4.2 million. Photo courtesy of Rick Machle, Rockin MediaThe mansion that once served as a Japanese consulate in Cherry Hills Village has maintained much of its 1970s postmodern character, even after renovations were made a few years ago to make the home more energy efficient. The property is on the market for $4.2 million. Photo courtesy of Rick Machle, Rockin MediaThe mansion that once served as a Japanese consulate in Cherry Hills Village has maintained much of its 1970s postmodern character, even after renovations were made a few years ago to make the home more energy efficient. The property is on the market for $4.2 million. Photo courtesy of Rick Machle, Rockin MediaThe mansion that once served as a Japanese consulate in Cherry Hills Village has maintained much of its 1970s postmodern character, even after renovations were made a few years ago to make the home more energy efficient. The property is on the market for $4.2 million. Photo courtesy of Rick Machle, Rockin MediaThe mansion that once served as a Japanese consulate in Cherry Hills Village has maintained much of its 1970s postmodern character, even after renovations were made a few years ago to make the home more energy efficient. The property is on the market for $4.2 million. Photo courtesy of Rick Machle, Rockin MediaThe mansion that once served as a Japanese consulate in Cherry Hills Village has maintained much of its 1970s postmodern character, even after renovations were made a few years ago to make the home more energy efficient. The property is on the market for $4.2 million. Photo courtesy of Rick Machle, Rockin MediaThe mansion that once served as a Japanese consulate in Cherry Hills Village has maintained much of its 1970s postmodern character, even after renovations were made a few years ago to make the home more energy efficient. The property is on the market for $4.2 million. Photo courtesy of Rick Machle, Rockin MediaThe mansion that once served as a Japanese consulate in Cherry Hills Village has maintained much of its 1970s postmodern character, even after renovations were made a few years ago to make the home more energy efficient. The property is on the market for $4.2 million. Photo courtesy of Rick Machle, Rockin MediaThe mansion that once served as a Japanese consulate in Cherry Hills Village has maintained much of its 1970s postmodern character, even after renovations were made a few years ago to make the home more energy efficient. The property is on the market for $4.2 million. Photo courtesy of Rick Machle, Rockin MediaThe mansion that once served as a Japanese consulate in Cherry Hills Village has maintained much of its 1970s postmodern character, even after renovations were made a few years ago to make the home more energy efficient. The property is on the market for $4.2 million. Photo courtesy of Rick Machle, Rockin MediaThe mansion that once served as a Japanese consulate in Cherry Hills Village has maintained much of its 1970s postmodern character, even after renovations were made a few years ago to make the home more energy efficient. The property is on the market for $4.2 million. Photo courtesy of Rick Machle, Rockin MediaThe mansion that once served as a Japanese consulate in Cherry Hills Village has maintained much of its 1970s postmodern character, even after renovations were made a few years ago to make the home more energy efficient. The property is on the market for $4.2 million. Photo courtesy of Rick Machle, Rockin MediaThe mansion that once served as a Japanese consulate in Cherry Hills Village has maintained much of its 1970s postmodern character, even after renovations were made a few years ago to make the home more energy efficient. The property is on the market for $4.2 million. Photo courtesy of Rick Machle, Rockin MediaThe mansion that once served as a Japanese consulate in Cherry Hills Village has maintained much of its 1970s postmodern character, even after renovations were made a few years ago to make the home more energy efficient. The property is on the market for $4.2 million. Photo courtesy of Rick Machle, Rockin MediaThe mansion that once served as a Japanese consulate in Cherry Hills Village has maintained much of its 1970s postmodern character, even after renovations were made a few years ago to make the home more energy efficient. The property is on the market for $4.2 million. Photo courtesy of Rick Machle, Rockin MediaThe mansion that once served as a Japanese consulate in Cherry Hills Village has maintained much of its 1970s postmodern character, even after renovations were made a few years ago to make the home more energy efficient. The property is on the market for $4.2 million. Photo courtesy of Rick Machle, Rockin MediaThe mansion that once served as a Japanese consulate in Cherry Hills Village has maintained much of its 1970s postmodern character, even after renovations were made a few years ago to make the home more energy efficient. The property is on the market for $4.2 million. Photo courtesy of Rick Machle, Rockin MediaThe mansion that once served as a Japanese consulate in Cherry Hills Village has maintained much of its 1970s postmodern character, even after renovations were made a few years ago to make the home more energy efficient. The property is on the market for $4.2 million. Photo courtesy of Rick Machle, Rockin MediaThe mansion that once served as a Japanese consulate in Cherry Hills Village has maintained much of its 1970s postmodern character, even after renovations were made a few years ago to make the home more energy efficient. The property is on the market for $4.2 million. Photo courtesy of Rick Machle, Rockin MediaThe mansion that once served as a Japanese consulate in Cherry Hills Village has maintained much of its 1970s postmodern character, even after renovations were made a few years ago to make the home more energy efficient. The property is on the market for $4.2 million. Photo courtesy of Rick Machle, Rockin MediaThe mansion that once served as a Japanese consulate in Cherry Hills Village has maintained much of its 1970s postmodern character, even after renovations were made a few years ago to make the home more energy efficient. The property is on the market for $4.2 million. Show Caption of Expand
    A Cherry Hills Village home that once served as a Japanese consulate is on the market for $4.2 million.
    The two-story, 14,400-square-foot postmodern residence most recently served as the home and office of Joe Durnford, CEO of JD Ford. It was built in 1976 by MDC Holdings CEO Larry Mizel for his own private residence and then served as the consulate residence from 1998 to 2011, Dumford said. Dumford renovated the home after he bought it in 2012.
    The 1.11-acre property at 9 Sedgwick Drive in the Devonshire Heights neighborhood offers six bedrooms and 10 bathrooms. It’s just a 2-mile drive from former Broncos coach Mike Shanahan’s mansion, which is also on the market. (And closer than that, as the crow flies. Durnford said if he were a better golfer, he could hit it with a driver. He could practice at the Wellshire Golf Course, just across East Hampden Avenue from the neighborhood.)
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