AURORA | While the housing market across the metro region continues to tighten, homes in Aurora are some of the most affordable in the state, according to a new market report released Nov. 12.
Conducted by Coldwell Banker, the annual report identified Aurora as having the most affordable four-bedroom, two-bathroom homes in the metro area, outpacing Thornton, Littleton, Arvada, Parker, and Denver — the latter by nearly $200,000.
“Aurora offers a tremendous amount of affordability, even in newer neighborhoods,” said Ed Hardey, board chair of the Aurora Association of Realtors. “It doesn’t surprise me that there’s a difference in pricing.”
According to the report, average home prices in Aurora sit just under $297,000, which is significantly below the statewide mean of $407,000.
Looking across Colorado, Aurora sits seventh on the list of cities with the most affordable homes. Topping the list in Monte Vista, where the average four-bedroom home price is $178,000. Claiming the title of city with the most expensive homes in the state is Boulder, where the average peaks at $835,000. In Denver, the average is just over $494,000.
Hardey said Aurora’s pricing edge has the potential to attract businesses to the city, as well as position it to retain firms already established within its boundaries.
“One thing this helps us with is when employers want to relocate and they’re looking at home affordability, Aurora gives them a great bang for their buck with affordable homes in good neighborhoods with great schools,” he said.
Although cheap real estate is a promising prospect for growing Aurora’s economy, there are dozens of considerations ahead of home affordability a business and its employees thinking of relocating must take into account, according to George Peck, vice president of public affairs and operations at the Aurora Chamber of Commerce.
“Someone with a family will not only be looking at housing, but also at schools, commute times and taxes — where Aurora does pretty well,” Peck said. “All of those factors go into it.”
Low property taxes have long been a central pitch for city officials looking to cajole businesses into moving to the city, though available land with affordable homes could become an equally appealing selling point, according to Hardey.
“We have the land and places where people can build, so that keeps it more affordable than some other places,” he said. “And that’s pretty significant.”
While city officials in Aurora are hoping cheap home prices will incentivize businesses to open up shop within city limits, the business cart is far ahead of the housing horse in the most expensive market in the country. Los Altos, California, better known as Silicon Valley, stands light-years ahead of any Colorado listing price, with an average price tag of $1.9 million for a four-bedroom, two-bathroom home. According to the Coldwell Banker report, the average price of one Silicon Valley dwelling could purchase about 30 units in markets across the Midwest.
“The continued success of many tech companies throughout Silicon Valley has brought markets such as Los Altos into focus,” Joe Brown, a Los Altos-based real estate broker, said in a statement. “With Los Altos providing the utmost convenience and comfort as well as listing prices reflective of the ongoing demand of properties, it remains one of the most highly coveted places to live.”
Cleveland, Ohio, claims the title of most affordable market in the country, with an average listing price just shy of $65,000.
Though not nearly on par with the most expensive homes in the nation, Hardey said that the rate of appreciation in Aurora has been staggering.
“Aurora has seen dramatic appreciation in the past year, and prices show no indication of going down at all,” he said. “The home that you bought six months ago is worth far more today than when you made your initial purchase.”