The Best Places to Live in Colorado

Roxborough Park, Holly Hills, and Palmer Lake, are some of the best places to call home in Colorado.
Written by Melanie Krieps Mergen
Reviewed by Melanie Reiff
Good schools and affordable living costs are some of the factors that make cities like Roxborough Park, Holly Hills, and Palmer lake some of the best places to live in
The state of Colorado boasts a strong economy, plenty of outdoor activities, and natural beauty, so it’s no surprise an increasing number of people are choosing to call it home. Still, when it comes to choosing the right place to live in Colorado, it can be hard to know where to start. 
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What makes a good place to live? 

The best place to live for you depends on what you’re looking for in a lifestyle. There’s plenty to consider, including local weather patterns, the costs of houses and groceries, local entertainment options, and more.  
To help you get started on your search, we’ve picked seven Colorado towns, large and small, that are some of the best places in the state to call home: Holly Hills, Highlands Ranch, La Junta, Burlington, Lamar, Palmer Lake, and Roxborough Park. 
In making these picks, here are some of the criteria we evaluated:
  • Median home price
  • Median household income
  • Quality of schools 
  • Healthcare
  • Cost of living
  • Crime rates
  • Commute times
  • FEMA risk index ratings 
Using these metrics, we’ve sorted some of the best places to live in Colorado into three different categories: the best places for families, the most affordable places, and the best places to buy a house. Check out the details below!

The best places for families to live in Colorado

When you’re looking for a new place for your family to call home, it’s important to find a community with good schools, low crime rates, and overall high quality of life. With these considerations in mind, these three Colorado towns have plenty to offer for families.

Holly Hills

Location: Arapahoe County
Population: 2,683
Median household income: $130,938
Median home price: $592,900
Holly Hills is a community of a couple thousand not far from downtown
. The suburb has a more rural atmosphere, and the number of highly-ranked public and private schools makes it an appealing spot for families to plant their roots.
There are plenty of parks, restaurants, and cafes near Holly Hills, plus all the amenities in nearby Denver—from museums to sports to artistic events. 
However, the cost of living index in Holly Hills is a little higher than the national average at 133.7. Despite that, it’s still a relatively affordable place for families in the Denver area. 

Highlands Ranch

Location: Douglas County
Population: 103,444
Median household income: $127,093
Median home price: $663,300
Highlands Ranch
is another Denver suburb with highly-rated schools that are appealing to families. But, its cost of living index score of 143.1 makes it a little more expensive than Holly Hills. That said, Highlands Ranch is often considered one of the safest communities in Colorado. 
The Highlands Ranch metro area boasts 2,650 acres of open space, 26 parks, and over 70 miles of trail for families to enjoy the outdoors and stay active together.
Family-friendly events
like summer’s KidFest in June, make even the youngest Highlands Ranch residents feel like part of the community. 

The most affordable places to live in Colorado

To highlight some of Colorado’s most affordable places, we took a closer look at towns’ overall costs of living, as well as commute times, which can have an impact on how much you’re spending on fuel. We’ve rounded up the following three towns as the most affordable places to live in the state. 

La Junta

Location: Otero County
Population: 7,322
Median household income: $49,654
Median home price: $107,200
La Junta lies about two hours southwest of
Colorado Springs
. The cost of living index of just 72.6 makes it much more affordable than the Denver area. It’s not just the low cost of living: La Junta residents also enjoy a relatively short commute time of about 23 minutes, allowing residents to save both time and money. 
If local entertainment and history are both important to you, La Junta’s Picketwire Center for the Performing and Visual Arts was recognized by Colorado as the longest continuously running community theater in the state.
La Junta is also the site of plenty of natural wonders. To the south of La Junta is the Comanche National Grasslands: a 440,000-plus acre area that’s home to more than 300 different species of animals. There’s a surprising array of landscapes, from pinion-juniper forests to canyons to shortgrass prairies. If you visit at the right time of year, you might even be able to witness the annual
tarantula migration
that occurs in early fall.


Location: Kit Carson County
Population: 3,172
Median household income: $51,114
Median home price: $188,000
Burlington is another one of Colorado’s most affordable towns. The overall cost of living index is 82.9, making it slightly more expensive than La Junta, and the average commute time to work in Burlington is just under 11 minutes.
This small rural town, near the state border with
, plays host to the annual Kit County Fair, and there’s
year-round entertainment
as well. If you’re looking for a weekend getaway in the big city, the drive to Denver is a little more than two hours. 


Location: Prowers County
Population: 7,687
Median household income: $41,124
Median home price: $99,700
is a small rural town in Prowers County, and despite its small size, a good number of families live in Lamar because of its moderate to good school ratings.  Additionally, the crime rates fall well below national averages, making it an enticing place to settle down. 
The average commute time to work is about 16 minutes, and the overall cost of living index is 76.6—so residents of Lamar enjoy one of the lowest costs of living in the state. 

Best places to buy a house in Colorado

If you’re looking to buy a house in Colorado, you’ll want to consider the housing market as well as potential climate risks. We analyzed’s summaries of local housing markets and the FEMA Risk Index to find some of the best places to buy a house. 

Holly Hills

Location: Arapahoe County
Population: 2,683
Median household income: $130,938
Median home price: $592,900
Living in Holly Hills can be so nice, we picked it twice! Not only is Holly Hills a great place for people to raise their families, but it’s also generally a good place to buy a house in Colorado. 
While Holly Hills historically has been a more affordable place to buy a house near the Denver area, according to
, home listing prices were up 18.3% as of March 2022. 
Another consideration is that Arapahoe County’s score on FEMA’s Risk Index is a “relatively moderate” 20.40 (the national average is 10.6), with the county’s highest risks being related to tornadoes (35.33) and hail (54.7), so having the right
home insurance
coverage is a must. 

Palmer Lake

Location: El Paso County
Population: 2,636
Median household income: $92,333
Median home price: $456,400
Palmer Lake is a suburb of Colorado Springs. While Palmer Lake’s home prices have been more accessible in the past, in March 2022, listing prices were up 41.3% from the previous year.
If you can manage to snag a home in the area, there’s plenty in Palmer Springs to enjoy. The lake town has many locally-owned businesses that overlook the lake, as well as family-owned restaurants, boutiques, and art galleries. Crime rates in Palmer Lake are also extremely low, making it a generally safe place to live.
Palmer Lake has a FEMA risk index score of a “relatively moderate” 16.87. Its most substantial risks are pretty comparable to Holly Hills: tornadoes (31.28), hail (31.88), and lightning (37.37). 

Roxborough Park

Location: Douglas County
Population: 9,416
Median household income: $140,994
Median home price: $622,000
As a suburb of Denver, Roxborough Park historically has been one of the best places to buy a house in the metro area. Area schools receive high rankings, and the nearby Roxborough State Park makes it a desirable place to live for outdoors enthusiasts. That said, Roxborough Park’s median listing home prices are up 18.4% as of March 2022. 
Roxborough Park also has a “very low” FEMA risk index score of 0.34. Its largest risk is for tornadoes, which is only a very low-risk rating of 0.76—so it’s one of the safest places to live in the state.

How to find affordable homeowners and car insurance in Colorado

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