People of all ages have been flocking to Denver over the last few years. It’s a great business hub in the Rockies and its location in beautiful Colorado means plenty of extra space for activities. However, as more people are heading out west, downtown housing costs have skyrocketed. Fortunately for those on a budget, there are a few nearby options that are far more affordable.

1. Commerce City

Commerce City, CO

Source: City Government of Commerce City via Facebook

Key Stats:

  • Median household income: $63,555
  • Median home value: $187,800

Right down the road from Denver, Commerce City is great for those on a budget looking to commute. Not only is the cost of living low compared to most of the other cities on this list, homes are also relatively cheap. Aside from lower prices, Commerce City is also home to the Dick’s Sporting Goods Park, the soccer stadium where the Colorado Rapids play.

2. Thornton

Thornton, CO

Source: Flickr User jessicareeder

Key Stats:

  • Median household income: $64,525
  • Median home value: $208,300

Once an area outside of Denver that consisted of just farmland, 60 years later Thornton is a populated city of over 120,000 residents. Only 10 miles northeast of downtown Denver, this town is also great for commuters. Just because things are affordable here doesn’t mean you don’t get a bang for your buck. With 81 city parks, 80 miles of trails, and over 2,000 acres of public green space, Thornton is one place where you might be paying less but you won’t feel like you’re losing much value.

3. Westminster

Westminster, CO

Source: Westminster, Colorado - Municipal Government via Facebook

Key Stats:

  • Income spent on rent: 29.1 percent
  • Median household income: $64,884

Ranked the 24th best place to live in America by Money magazine, Westminster is yet another Denver suburb on the rise. Westminster is only 9 miles northwest of the city, putting residents close to downtown Denver. There are plans in the works to connect Westminster to Denver’s commuter rail and bus rapid transport lines in the near future, making daily life for the locals that much more efficient.

4. Northglenn

Northglenn, CO

Source: City of Northglenn Government via Facebook

Key Stats:

  • Income spent on rent: 31 percent
  • Median home value: $183,600

. One of the smaller suburbs on this list, Northglenn is home to a little over 30,000 residents. This means that while it’s close to Denver, it has much more of a small town feel. Median household income is a bit lower here, hovering around $53,000. However, the lower home prices help to make up for that. Despite its smaller size, Northglenn still has 26 parks and 28 miles of trails spread throughout the city. If you want access to the Denver without all the hustle and bustle, this might be the place for you.

5. Aurora

Aurora, CO

Source: Aurora, Colorado City Hall via Facebook

Key Stats:

  • Median household income: $50,987
  • Median home value: $176,500

With well over 300,000 residents, Aurora is the largest affordable Denver suburb on our list by far. If you’re living here, it basically feels like you’re in Denver due to the sheer size, without leaving the same dent in your savings account. In recent years, Aurora has actually passed Denver in sheer land space, though most of it is still undeveloped. As Denver continues to grow, this nearby neighbor will probably continue to expand as well. If you want more of a “big city” life but you’re concerned about how much you’re spending, try Aurora on for size.

6. Centennial

Centennial, CO

Source: Flickr User mattlemmon

Key Stats:

  • Income spent on rent: 28.7 percent
  • Median household income: $89,214

Boasting a median household income of a whopping $89,000, Centennial is a suburb that’s full of well off people that know how to manage their spending. Of course, the high income also means a higher median home price, as the average value nears $300,000. Centennial is actually the 15th safest city in the country. Centennial is also known for its great mix of both public and private schools, making this a great place to raise a family. It might seem a little more expensive, but if it’s in your price range, it’s one of the most affordable middle/upper-class Denver suburbs.

7. Arvada

Arvada, CO

Source: City of Arvada Government via Facebook

Key Stats:

  • Median household income: $68,210
  • Median home value: $242,700

Only seven miles northwest of Denver, Arvada is another cool place that puts you between the city and the mountains, giving you the best of both worlds. Its location near I-25 and I-270 make it convenient to get anywhere you want to go, whether it’s the ski hill on the weekend or your job downtown. It’s also currently served by several bus routes and is on the plan for the Denver RTD commuter rail expansion. Aside from being so convenient for drivers, it should be noted that Arvada has also been recognized by the League of American Bicyclists for bike-friendliness.

8. Broomfield

Broomfield, CO

Source: City and County of Broomfield via Facebook

Key Stats:

  • Median home value: $275,900
  • Median household income: $77,998

Broomfield has experienced tons of technological growth throughout the 90s and early-2000s and is still on the rise today. It’s home to several huge companies like Level 3 Communications and Oracle. However, like most places in Colorado, it’s not all business here. Broomfield is also home to a very extensive trail system that connects Stearns Lake and Josh’s Pond, as well as a skate park filled with bowls, rails, and a huge half pipe.

9. Lakewood

Lakewood, CO

Source: Flickr user ToddWCarpenter

Key Stats:

  • Median home value: $238,500
  • Income spent on rent: 30.9 percent

Another huge city on this list of Denver’s best affordable suburbs, Lakewood is home to around 150,000 residents. This means that living here might give you the touch of hustle and bustle you’ve been looking for, without the chaos that exists in downtown Denver. Lakewood was named an All-American City for the first time in 2011, an award given out to outstanding communities around the country that join together to accomplish certain goals.

10. Erie

Erie, CO

Source: Town of Erie, Colorado - Government via Facebook

Key Stats:

  • Median home value: $103,796
  • Median household income: $340,800

The wealthiest suburb on our list, Erie is another one that’s affordable if you’ve got a job that delivers a higher monthly income. One thing that makes this suburb stand out is the very low percent of income spent on rent. While most of the country is spending around a third of their monthly pay, Erie residents spend just a bit over a quarter of what they make. Plus, Erie is the only 25 minutes from Denver and 20 minutes from Boulder, which makes for an easy commute to either city for work and recreation.

Our Methodology

To create this list of affordable Denver suburbs, we considered the following criteria, taking a look at what might be important to people on a budget.

  • Cost of living
  • Median home value
  • Percentage of income spent on rent
  • Affordability ratio (median home value divided by median household income)

After taking these numbers into account, we averaged those scores into one overall score and the places with the ten lowest scores made up our list of the ten most affordable Denver suburbs. For this list, we sourced data from AreaVibes, amenities data from business listings, and the rest of the data from the 2013 U.S. Census American Community Survey. Want to see how all 21 Denver suburbs stacked up? Take a look at the table below: Most Affordable Places Near Denver Like This Post? You’ll Definitely Love These: