These Are The 10 Best Places To Live In Colorado For 2018


We used science and data to determine which places in the Centennial State are the cream of the crop.

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This article is an opinion based on facts and is meant as infotainment. Don’t freak out that we updated it for 2018.

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Where are the best places in the state of Colorado?

To the untrained eye they are the places that have awesome economies. They’re the places in Centennial State where people have the best jobs, residents are all above average, and the sun shines the most.

However, here at HomeSnacks, we don’t trust the untrained eye and instead look to data to understand the best places to call home in Colorado.

There might be some surprises on this list, but when you look at the unbiased data, it’s hard to argue against. Even if Denver finishes a lowly 46th.

After analyzing 71 places in Colorado, we came up with this list of the best places:

  1. Louisville (Photos)
  2. Parker (Photos)
  3. Erie (Photos)
  4. Superior (Photos)
  5. Castle Rock (Photos)
  6. Windsor (Photos)
  7. Castle Pines
  8. Vail (Photos)
  9. Broomfield (Photos)
  10. Eagle (Photos)

Follow along as we provide more insight into how we reached our overall best places to live in Colorado.

If you’re looking for something more national, check out the best states in America or the best places to live in America.

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The Pressing Question: Size

Before we even started to collect data, we had to answer a tough question: Is it fair to pit Denver with a population of 663,303 against places with a population of 18?

We firmly decided no, that just isn’t fair.

So to create our ranking, we broke places to live into three tiers:

  • Cities — Populations over 5,200
  • Towns — Populations between 1,000 and 5,200
  • Small Towns — Populations below 1,000

This left us with 71 cities, 102 towns, and 247 small towns.

We then decided, no matter how much anyone loves their town, the best places have more of everything and therefore you need to have over 5,200 people to truly be ‘the best’.

Now we also realize that city living might not be your cup of tea, so we ran the following analysis on towns and then again for small towns.

You can see those two top tens at the bottom of the post.

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How We Calculated The Best Place To Live In Colorado

Now that we had our set of cities, it was time to rank them.

We ranked each place in Colorado across a number of criteria from one to 71, with one being the best.

We then took the average rank across all criteria, with the city posting the lowest overall score being crowned the winner of the title “Best Place To Live In Colorado”.

The criteria we looked at were:

  • Median Home Values
  • Median Income
  • Population Density (Higher better)
  • Unemployment Rate
  • Commute Time
  • Crime
  • Education Levels
  • Health Insurance Coverage
  • Poverty rates

Sources of criteria include the New Census Data and FBI Crime Data.

If your city or town isn’t among the top 10, jump down to the bottom of the post to see a detailed chart of the best places in Colorado.

Otherwise, buckle up for a ride down good living lane with Louisville at the end of the cul-de-sac.

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1. Louisville

Louisville, Colorado

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 19,972
Rank Last Year: 1 (No Change)
Home Values: $440,300 (9th best)
Unemployment Rate: 4.2% (15th best)
Little Louisville, a city just outside of Boulder, has it made. It has the 15th lowest unemployment rate, and crime is far below average for Colorado. Residents here have great jobs, and the home price proves it’s a highly desirable location in the state, for those who can afford the high cost of living.

More good news: Louisville’s population has actually ticked down over the years, so you get to keep more for yourself. Maybe the secret is out now?

2. Parker

Parker, Colorado

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 48,442
Rank Last Year: 4 (Up 2)
Home Values: $330,800 (18th best)
Unemployment Rate: 4.0% (13th best)
If you want to live in the Denver area, you can’t go wrong if you decide to make the Town of Parker your home. However, everyone and their mother wants to live here. The population has doubled in the last 15 years, and is showing no signs up letting up.

Can you blame them? It’s a beautiful place with really low crime, where a majority of residents are wealthy. Plus, the residents are really involved with helping to make Parker as great as possible. You can’t get it much better than in Parker.

3. Erie

Erie, Colorado

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 20,801
Rank Last Year: 5 (Up 2)
Home Values: $379,800 (13th best)
Unemployment Rate: 2.9% (8th best)
Things can’t get much better than in the town of Erie. The crime is the 2nd lowest in the entire state, and the residents who live in Erie make huge salaries, and almost all of them have great jobs.

While all of the other Denver suburbs to make the top of this list are on its south side, Erie is the only one that’s considered a northern suburb of Denver.

Erie also benefits from an active arts community.

4. Superior

Superior, Colorado

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 12,928
Rank Last Year: 2 (Down 2)
Home Values: $456,400 (7th best)
Unemployment Rate: 4.3% (17th best)
Superior is right next door to Louisville. The only real glaring differences between the two: Superior residents are far wealthier, but the crime is much higher. And unlike Louisville, people are flocking to Superior in droves, as the population has increased almost 40% since 2000.

5. Castle Rock

Castle Rock, Colorado

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 53,789
Rank Last Year: 15 (Up 10)
Home Values: $328,700 (19th best)
Unemployment Rate: 3.9% (12th best)
Castle Rock has a long and illustrious history and its ranking in the top ten of our best places to live is just another notch in its belt.\n\Castle Rock had the 10th highest household median income adjusted for cost of living at $93,153.

Not to mention that its residents have plenty to do on the weekends.

6. Windsor

Windsor, Colorado

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 21,154
Rank Last Year: 7 (Up 1)
Home Values: $327,000 (21st best)
Unemployment Rate: 4.3% (17th best)
In Windsor, everyone loves to call Windsor home! The median home value is the 22nd highest in Colorado.

Additionally, the unemployment rate is the 17th lowest in the state. and the crime rates are some of the lowest in Centennial State.

7. Castle Pines


Population: 10,389
Rank Last Year: 8 (Up 1)
Home Values: $505,200 (4th best)
Unemployment Rate: 3.0% (9th best)
Who wouldn’t want to live in a place where there’s low crime and everyone is rich? That’s the case with Castle Pines, a small community a short drive south of Highlands Ranch.

Castle Pines was only incorporated eight years ago, in 2007, and things are already looking peachy keen here. The unemployment rate is the 9th lowest in Colorado and the median income comes in at $140,764.

8. Vail

Vail, Colorado

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 5,363
Rank Last Year: 25 (Up 17)
Home Values: $556,600 (1st best)
Unemployment Rate: 1.4% (2nd best)
Vail has been called one of the best small towns in America. If you live here, you’re most likely already aware of how great it is to live there.

Just about everyone who wants a job in Vail has one; the unemployment rate is hovering at about 1.4% and lowering. And the Vail police department is doing a solid job, as crime is the 56th lowest in the state here.

Who wouldn’t want to live in a place like this?

9. Broomfield

Broomfield, Colorado

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 62,449
Rank Last Year: 11 (Up 2)
Home Values: $328,200 (20th best)
Unemployment Rate: 4.5% (20th best)
Say what you want about cheap living. The fact is, homes are priced by demand, and there’s A LOT of demand to live in Broomfield.

Broomfield ranked impressively high for its crime rate (23rd overall) and its short commute times (57th).

We think that’s worth the price of admission.

10. Eagle

Eagle, Colorado

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 6,603
Rank Last Year: 6 (Down 4)
Home Values: $416,300 (11th best)
Unemployment Rate: 2.1% (3rd best)
The tiny town of Eagle may not remain tiny forever. The word has been out for a long, long time about how special this place is. In fact, the population of 6,603 is double from what it was just 15 years ago.

The residents are heavily involved in making their community even more awesome, and as many Coloradoans know, Eagle is a great central spot for excursions that make Colorado one of the best states in the nation for outdoor sports.

Wrapping Up The Best Of The Best In Colorado

If you’re looking at areas in Colorado with the best economic situations, where there’s lower than average crime, and a lot to do, this is an accurate list.

Louisville made a strong showing to take in the overall number one spot for 2018.

Best Towns To Live In Colorado

  1. Bow Mar (Pop. 1,047)
  2. Niwot (Pop. 4,588)
  3. Acres Green (Pop. 2,926)
  4. Meridian (Pop. 3,327)
  5. Columbine Valley (Pop. 1,190)
  6. Castle Pines Village (Pop. 4,518)
  7. Frisco (Pop. 2,909)
  8. Pine Brook Hill (Pop. 1,091)
  9. Inverness (Pop. 1,189)
  10. Lyons (Pop. 2,027)

Best Small Towns To Live In Colorado

  1. Sawpit (Pop. 31)
  2. Morgan Heights (Pop. 360)
  3. Saddle Ridge (Pop. 63)
  4. Bark Ranch (Pop. 224)
  5. Blue Sky (Pop. 15)
  6. Woody Creek (Pop. 272)
  7. Valmont (Pop. 55)
  8. Rock Creek Park (Pop. 57)
  9. Crisman (Pop. 402)
  10. Sunshine (Pop. 177)

If you’re curious enough, here are the worst places to live in Colorado:

  1. Federal Heights (Pop. 12,173)
  2. Sheridan (Pop. 5,965)
  3. Pueblo (Pop. 108,385)

For more Colorado reading , check out:

Detailed List Of The Best Cities In Colorado

City Rank Previous Rank Population Unemployment Rate Home Value
Louisville 1 1 19,972 4.2% $440,300
Parker 2 4 48,442 4.0% $330,800
Erie 3 5 20,801 2.9% $379,800
Superior 4 2 12,928 4.3% $456,400
Castle Rock 5 15 53,789 3.9% $328,700
Windsor 6 7 21,154 4.3% $327,000
Castle Pines 7 8 10,389 3.0% $505,200
Vail 8 25 5,363 1.4% $556,600
Broomfield 9 11 62,449 4.5% $328,200
Eagle 10 6 6,603 2.1% $416,300
Monument 11 10 6,346 5.1% $333,000
Lone Tree 12 12 12,808 4.3% $521,000
Boulder 13 9 105,420 6.1% $554,500
Littleton 14 17 45,072 5.0% $314,100
Lafayette 15 13 27,053 5.0% $310,400
Centennial 16 3 107,862 4.6% $339,300
Estes Park 17 18 6,230 2.7% $342,000
Wellington 18 20 7,409 2.2% $226,300
Golden 19 14 20,268 4.8% $423,600
Firestone 20 24 11,709 6.4% $271,500
Aspen 21 22 6,788 6.2% $483,000
Fort Collins 22 23 157,251 6.6% $285,400
Steamboat Springs 23 19 12,336 5.1% $481,200
Durango 24 26 17,817 5.4% $383,500
Gypsum 25 28 6,729 2.2% $300,600
Avon 26 35 6,444 0.6% $369,700
Salida 27 29 5,430 3.2% $252,900
Loveland 28 30 73,360 5.6% $237,200
Woodland Park 29 27 7,180 7.8% $273,700
Frederick 30 16 10,791 3.7% $261,500
Westminster 31 34 111,770 6.3% $249,900
Carbondale 32 44 6,571 4.5% $448,000
Arvada 33 21 113,532 5.3% $278,100
Milliken 34 33 6,157 2.5% $196,400
Longmont 35 36 90,719 6.9% $272,100
Brush 36 47 5,458 9.6% $130,000
Thornton 37 32 130,511 4.5% $236,100
Wheat Ridge 38 43 31,044 5.5% $278,700
Craig 39 40 8,913 4.8% $167,000
Fountain 40 39 27,817 8.3% $193,000
Manitou Springs 41 38 5,217 7.0% $295,700
Fort Morgan 42 48 11,346 6.3% $125,300
Lakewood 43 41 149,793 5.4% $273,200
Fruita 44 37 12,790 9.5% $201,500
Colorado Springs 45 42 448,759 7.5% $222,100
Denver 46 45 663,303 5.4% $292,700
Northglenn 47 46 38,128 6.3% $201,400
La Junta 48 55 6,978 8.2% $91,200
Berthoud 49 31 5,766 6.6% $252,900
Evans 50 49 20,767 4.7% $159,300
Fort Lupton 51 51 7,814 6.6% $165,000
Glenwood Springs 52 50 9,806 5.3% $327,000
Brighton 53 53 36,307 5.0% $214,000
Gunnison 54 55 6,086 11.9% $217,200
Cortez 55 58 8,683 6.6% $149,600
Englewood 56 57 32,523 7.6% $238,400
Rifle 57 70 9,488 10.9% $211,000
Lochbuie 58 59 5,367 4.1% $169,500
Greeley 59 54 98,975 8.3% $183,300
Edgewater 60 65 5,278 12.9% $252,900
Grand Junction 61 52 60,630 9.3% $204,700
Montrose 62 61 19,016 9.5% $182,300
Aurora 63 62 351,131 7.0% $206,300
Sterling 64 68 13,976 8.7% $107,000
Delta 65 66 8,813 8.7% $152,900
Lamar 66 60 7,662 12.4% $77,600
Trinidad 67 64 8,280 8.5% $127,500
Alamosa 68 63 9,671 9.7% $142,700
Pueblo 69 69 108,385 10.8% $116,800
Sheridan 70 71 5,965 10.0% $151,500
Federal Heights 71 66 12,173 5.6% $42,200

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9 thoughts on “These Are The 10 Best Places To Live In Colorado For 2018

  1. Maybe you should add one more metric to your criteria … Ask people in Stonegate (or Columbine, or Highlands Ranch, or …) would they rather live in Vail (or one of OUR awesome suburbs), or where they currently live.

    I’ll betcha …

  2. This isn’t science. This is data mining and running an algorithm. And congrats, your top 10, it is basically a list of places native Coloradans hate. You found the highest concentration of Chili’s and malls. Maybe out east that’s your idea of a good time, but not here. As a Denver native, there is nothing I love more than open space, not the horrid burbs of Highlands Ranch.

    1. I’m not from Colorado, but we’re thinking of moving. This list and the one of the worst 10 places in Colorado is of no help at all. Darren, I agree completely with your opening statement – this is NOT science. This is using a personal opinion to analyze data. It’s biased, and it’s absolutely not science. The data itself is scientific, but the analysis is pure opinion, there is no objectivity at all.

      Almost no one likes a high crime rate and almost everyone wants good schools, sure, but high housing prices and high population density? Who actually likes that? I want to move to Colorado for it’s landscape, not to cram myself into another city. I can do that here in Atlanta.

    1. I agree. And how do consensus areas even count? Plus you must be wealthy to live in any of them. I grew up in Boulder and all the people who have moved in over the last decade or two have ruined it and the Front Range.

  3. Seriously? Your #1 (Stonegate) is a subdivision in your #9 (Parker). That’s how well thought out this piece is.

  4. Also … there is no “downtown” Columbine. Columbine is a sub-division in western Littleton. The “downtown” is a busy intersection of stores and restaurants.

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