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Colorado developer builds single-family homes for under $250,000

Smaller homes aimed at teachers, first responders
Posted at 11:52 AM, Dec 03, 2018

Owning a home has been part of the American Dream for much of our nation's history, but it's a dream that's become difficult to attain in Denver's housing market.

That's a problem Oakwood Homes is trying to tackle with its latest development, aptly titled, Your American Dream.

"The average price of a new home is well into the $500,000s now and that's not where most people can afford to purchase a home," said Oakwood Homes Chief Operating Officer Scott Thorson.

On Monday, Oakwood unveiled its 24-home development off Pena Boulevard and 54th Avenue in Green Valley Ranch. The homes are priced around $230,000. While smaller than the average Denver home — roughly 1,200 to 1,400 square feet — buyers can choose a one- or two-car garage, the number of bathrooms, and from two to four bedrooms.

Another unique aspect of the Your American Dream homes is the target market.

"Our CEO said, 'Let's make sure that when we do this, that we go to the groups that have most difficulty right now of attaining home ownership," Thorson said.

With that in mind, Oakwood opened the first homes in the development to essential workforce like teachers and first responders. Nearly all 24 homes in the first development have been purchased and the first closings will happen in late December.

The American Dream homes aren't the only homes Oakwood is building at a smaller size and price point. Darla Ruff recently moved into an 1,100-square-foot Oakwood home in a neighboring block.

"I had a lot of stuff from 30 years in a house, so downsizing was difficult." she said. "But I've found I can live with it just fine, I probably had more stuff than I needed."