Breckenridge : Colorado

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What it's Like to Retire in Breckenridge

The charming and historic town of Breckenridge, Colorado, sits 9,300 feet above sea level in a U-shaped valley on the western slope of the Continental Divide. The small town has a population of 4,749 residents (2014 census), but that number swells to 39,000 during the busy ski season with visitors and the many second home owners. Breckenridge Ski Resort is one of the most visited ski resorts in the western hemisphere, but the town with its natural year-round beauty, also attracts outdoor enthusiasts during the summer months for its wildflowers, hiking, fly-fishing, mountain biking and white water rafting on nearby Lake Dillion. Locals are known to say “ I came for the winters but stayed for the summers”.

Breckenridge was founded during the Gold Rush to serve miners working on gold deposits along the Blue River. The gold mines around Breckenridge are long gone, although some are open as tourist attractions. Today, the small town boasts over 200 shops, many restaurants, and historic sites. Breckenridge has also been designated as a Gold level Bicycle Friendly Community by the League of American Bicyclists. "National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation" was filmed here, as was "Dumb and Dumber".  Picture of Main Street in Breckenridge courtesy of Wikipedia and AV9; picture of Breckenridge peaks 8,9, and 10 from Dercum Mountain at Keystone Resort courtesy of Wikipedia and Ahodges7.

 

Where to Retire in Breckenridge and Home Prices

Breckenridge offers more than 2,500 condominiums which are used by many as second homes and rental units. Depending on location and ski in/ski out resort condos, prices vary from the high $100's for a studio, to over $1million for a three bedroom. Trulia reports the average list price for a single family home is over $1million.  

 

What is special about Breckenridge

Breckenridge offers natural beauty and many outdoor recreational opportunities including hiking, biking and golf. There are community gardens, an Open Space and Trails program, several parks, and an ice arena. 

 

What is not special about Breckenridge

High cost of living; very cold winter temperatures with a lot of snow; the nearest large city (Denver) is about 80 miles away.

 

Who will like retirement in Breckenridge

Retirees who want a small town with a lot of outdoor activity and recreation would enjoy living here.  The town hosts many events and has a nordic center, a library, an arts district and theatre productions. The downtown is walkable, has free bus service, and is bicycle friendly.

 

Local economy is driven by

Tourism drives the economy along with retail and recreation.

 

Climate and Physical Environment

January daytime average is about 28 degrees, and nights are very cold with an average of 15 degrees; July's average is 55 degrees. Breckenridge gets about 300 inches of snow annually, but it also averages 300 days of sunshine.

 

Restaurants & Cultural Scene

Breckenridge is a historic town, and its Main Street features buildings with clapboards and log exteriors. The 200 shops and many restaurants, add to the vibrant atmosphere of vacationers, skiers, and visitors. The town holds events throughout the year including ski races and festivities, and the International Snow Sculpture Championship, with sculptors from around the world coming to compete.  During the summer, many art fairs are held along with concerts by the National Repertory Orchestra and the Breckenridge Music Institute.

 

Crime

The crime rate here is higher than the national average, with most incidents involving theft.

 

Medical facilities

There are some medical facilities and urgi care centers in Breckenridge, but the nearest hospital is in Frisco, about 8 miles north.

 

Transportation

The town offers free bus service and is a bicycle friendly community; the nearest regional airport is in Eagle about 70 miles away; Denver is the closest international airport about 104 miles.

 

Valuable Links

Town of Breckenridge

GoBreck

 

What people are saying about Breckenridge

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Facts about BRECKENRIDGE
  • State: CO
  • Environment: Mountain,Small Town,Outdoor Oriented,Biking Community,
  • City Population: Less than 10,000
  • Median age of Population: 25-44
  • Avg Jan Temperature: 21-40
  • Avg July Temperature: 41-60
  • Median HH Income: 41,001-60,000
  • Average Home Price (MLS): $500,001+
  • Annual Property Tax on a $200,000 house: Less than 2000
  • Total Crime Index: 111-120 (high)
  • Cost of Living Index: 121+ (very high)
  • Culture Index: 111-120 (high)
  • State Sales Tax: Yes
  • State Income Tax: Yes
  • Name of the Guide: jdb

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