New tricks for old-home buyers

Just like the truism about dogs set in their ways, people who love older homes often resist the idea of a newly built home. (I get that, because I love all the history and character too.) But what happens if you just can’t find the great older home you’re looking for?

My clients often face this dilemma, due to the price and scarcity of older homes right now. First, let’s look at some options that might help you find the urban charm you seek.

  • Can you increase your price range? Can a parent offer financial help?
  • Can you modify your expectations? Do you really need the “perfect” house right now?
  • Are you looking in a wide enough area? Everyone knows about Park Hill, Congress Park, Highlands and Wash Park, but what about some of the lesser-known neighborhoods. Maybe look at Mayfair, Hale, Speer/Byers, Whittier, Baker, etc.

If trying all of the above still doesn’t yield the desired result, a regroup may be in order. Which often leads to the next logical question:

“What about Stapleton?”

I live in Stapleton and often joke about the perception of it from families looking for “something with character” in an older home. If I could read their minds, I might hear, “All the homes are the same,” and “What would my friends say?”

If clients are struggling to find an older home, I will often ask them to see a few homes in Stapleton – to at least see what’s on the east side of Denver. Maybe Stapleton will work, maybe it won’t. But seeing your options at least helps you make an informed decision.

As you can see from the data below, there are clear differences between Stapleton and the rest of “old Denver.” Without doubt, Stapleton is the winner in house-specific stats: average bedrooms, average baths, square feet above ground, square feet finished, price per square foot above and price per square foot finished.

Then again, Old Denver is the winner in lot size and in the emotional appeal of things like tree size and architectural character.

Each area has its strengths. But understanding them simplifies the debate into which strengths matter most to you.

As a realtor, my job is to present all the options, even those that may seem like a long shot. If you’re looking for an older home and can’t seem to find a good fit, Stapleton may be a possibility worth exploring.

Hope you enjoy the side-by-side comparison. Leave a comment if you have a personal story about this debate.


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Outsource Your Nerd


Greg Eckler

The Denver Expert
Broker/Owner of Denver Realty Experts LLC
Direct: 303-830-1772


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