8 Cheapest Places to Live in Colorado near Denver – 2022 Update

If you want to live close to the Mile High City on a budget, then check out this list of the cheapest places to live in Colorado near Denver now in 2022.

It is well-known that Denver is one of the most desirable places to live in The Rocky Mountain State. We even ranked it as the 7th best city in the whole state of Colorado.

But, it can be quite expensive, especially due to its red-hot housing market that has priced out many regular, hard-working young professionals, families, and even retirees.

Therefore, we looked at all of the towns and cities surrounding the Denver metro area and hand-picked the top choices for you to relocate to that offer a reasonable cost of living, have a strong supply of affordable housing, and feature good livability.

We also made sure to choose places that offer top notch entertainment options and are close enough to Denver so that you can commute or visit during the weekend.

So, let’s take a look at the most affordable places to live in Colorado near Denver that combine good affordability with a strong quality of life.

Cheapest Places to Live in Colorado near Denver – Our Research Approach

To develop this list of the cheapest places to live near Denver, we first had to define what should be considered “near” enough to Denver. Therefore, we set a limit to find places that are a 45 minute drive away from Denver or less.

Then, we had to determine the right methodology to evaluate and rank the cheapest cities in the area. So, we gathered official data from trusted sources like AreaVibes, Zillow, and US News and World Report to get data on the overall cost of living and the housing markets for each location.

We then developed our own unique formula to rate each city based on a blend of these metrics and came up with our final rankings.

The 8 Cheapest Places to Live in Colorado near Denver in 2022

8. Aurora

cheapest-places-to-live-in-colorado-near-denver-Aurora

Population: 351,131
Cost of Living Index: 5% Below Colorado Average
Median Home Prices: 22% Below Colorado Average
Distance from Denver: 30 minutes
Location: Check on Google Maps

We kick off our list of the cheapest places to live in Colorado near Denver with the “Gateway to the Rockies” that is home to thousands of acres of gorgeous open space. This is one of the places where you’ll be able to appreciate Colorado’s beautiful outdoors to the fullest.

With that being said, Aurora is also home to the state’s largest indoor marketplace, the bustling Town Center at Aurora, as well as a thriving arts scene.

This former military town is now full of business plazas and new housing. Moreover, it will only take you about 15 minutes to get to the Denver International Airport and to east Denver’s main attractions.

7. Brighton

Population: 36,307
Cost of Living Index: 7% Below Colorado Average
Median Home Prices: 19% Below Colorado Average
Distance from Denver: 30 minutes
Location: Check on Google Maps

Brighton is located at an elevation of nearly 5,000 feet and is only 20 miles northeast from Denver.

Agriculture has been the driving factor behind the city’s success for over a hundred years. It’s the perfect place to enjoy farmers markets, farm tours, and harvest festivals.

Barr Lake State Park is the town’s crown jewel. This is where you’ll find the Rocky Mountain Bird Observatory, 12 shooting lanes, and plenty of sites for camping and fishing.

6. Northglenn

cheapest-places-to-live-in-colorado-near-denver-Northglenn

Population: 38,128
Cost of Living Index: 8% Below Colorado Average
Median Home Prices: 24% Below Colorado Average
Distance from Denver: 20 minutes
Location: Check on Google Maps

This growing suburb is only 9 miles away from downtown Denver and is one of the cheapest places to live near Denver.

Northglenn is an inexpensive and tranquil place to live in. It even features some family-friendly attractions like the Boondocks Food & Fun Center.

Additionally, nature lovers will be able to truly appreciate what the town has to offer.

The main outdoor attractions include the Croke Reservoir and the 550-acre park system. The area has recently been updated and now includes a sensory playground and a unique art installation that features magnificent sculptures.

5. Lochbuie

Population: 5,367
Cost of Living Index: 10% Below Colorado Average
Median Home Prices: 36% Below Colorado Average
Distance from Denver: 30 minutes
Location: Check on Google Maps

The locals appreciate Lochbuie (pronounced ‘lok-boo-ee’) for being one of the cheapest places to live in Colorado near Denver that also offers a nice sense of community.

This small city started as a mobile home park in the 1960s and is now a quaint little town with many close-knit neighborhoods.

Even though Lochbuie is quite different from other small towns in the state, it manages to pack in 82 acres of open space and 6 public parks in just 3 square miles.

If you’re a fan of beautiful sunsets and friendly neighbors, then this might be the place for you.

4. Welby

cheapest-places-to-live-in-colorado-near-denver-welby

Population: 16,771
Cost of Living Index: 13% Below Colorado Average
Median Home Prices: 38% Below Colorado Average
Distance from Denver: 20 minutes
Location: Check on Google Maps

This town was named after General Welby, a railroad official who became the second bishop of St. Helena in 1862.

Welby has an area of only about 2,400 acres, 60 of which are water. This quiet and peaceful place with nice and caring neighbors is one of the cheapest places to live in Colorado near Denver. 

There are several local shops, restaurants, and bars around town that make sure that the people in the area are able to fulfill their everyday needs. There is also Rotella Park that is located right in the heart of the city.

Of course, nothing is stopping you from hopping in the car and taking a short 20-minute drive to Denver if you’re looking for something a bit more special for the evening. 

Welby is also one of the most diverse suburbs in Colorado with a relatively young population – 19% of its residents are between 25 and 34 years old.

3. Fort Lupton

Population: 7,814
Cost of Living Index: 14% Below Colorado Average
Median Home Prices: 38% Below Colorado Average
Distance from Denver: 40 minutes
Location: Check on Google Maps

Fort Lupton is conveniently located close to Colorado’s two major highways. It will take you only about half an hour to get to Denver International Airport.

History lovers will get to enjoy the town’s museum and the historic park. The city is also home to some of the best tomatoes in the state and to an amazing 139-foot water slide at the city’s recreation center.

Fort Lupton’s total crime rate is 58% lower than the national average. Overall, it is not only one of the cheapest places to live near Denver, but is also among the safest places as well.

2. Derby

Population: 8,930
Cost of Living Index: 17% Below Colorado Average
Median Home Prices: 53% Below Colorado Average
Distance from Denver: 20 minutes
Location: Check on Google Maps

In 1952, Derby combined with Adams City and Irondale to form Commerce City. However, its residents are trying to contribute to Derby’s identity so that it becomes something more than just a part of Commerce City.

This suburb of Denver was a bustling center back in the 1950s and 1960s. Nowadays, businesses and residents see great potential in the area and the city is currently exploring redevelopment opportunities, while still remaining among the cheapest places to live in Colorado near Denver.

Additionally, Derby has plenty of jobs to offer. So, those who are fond of outdoor activities and a suburban-rural feel might find that this city is a nice place to live and work in.

1. Federal Heights

cheapest-places-to-live-in-colorado-near-denver-Federal-Heights

Population: 12,173
Cost of Living Index: 26% Below Colorado Average
Median Home Prices: 84% Below Colorado Average
Distance from Denver: 20 minutes
Location: Check on Google Maps

Federal Heights tops our list as the cheapest place to live in Colorado near Denver. Since its foundation in 1940, this city has not grown much in size – it is still a little smaller than 2 square miles.

But, the cost of living in Federal Heights is 26% lower than the national average, which makes it quite attractive considering its close proximity to Denver.

Housing costs are also 84% lower than the state average, which makes it the most affordable place to buy a home on this list.

The city is best known for being home to Water World, one of the largest water parks in the United States.

Cheapest Places to Live in Colorado near Denver – Summary

The cheapest places to live in Colorado near Denver are:

  1. Federal Heights
  2. Derby
  3. Fort Lupton
  4. Welby
  5. Lochbuie
  6. Northglenn
  7. Brighton
  8. Aurora

They all offer a community where housing costs are not out of control (and hopefully will stay that way) as well as some fun things to do around town.

If you are interested in any of these places, we recommend that you book a trip to visit one for a weekend so that you can get a true taste of what the city has to offer.