Looking for living in Boulder. Please help.
June 8, 2011 1:45 PM   Subscribe

I've been struggling with finding a place to live for my friend and I for the month of July in Boulder, CO. I feel like I've exhausted everything...craigslist, AirBnB, VRBO. What are we doing wrong and where should we be looking? Is the summer rental market in Boulder that tough?

My friend and I will be in Boulder for 4 weeks, to attend a workshop at University of Boulder (so we need to be able to get there). I've been searching for two weeks now and people either don't return my emails or the places get snatched up too quick. We are running out of time and I feel super bad because I convinced her to opt out of uni housing so we could get a house together...and now I can't find one!

How do people successfully do these things? It seemed like such a good idea at the time, and now it's turning into a stressful nightmare timesuck.
posted by iamkimiam to Travel & Transportation around Boulder, CO (11 answers total)
Response by poster: I should also mention that it's too late to opt back into uni housing. Not to mention totally lame.
posted by iamkimiam at 1:47 PM on June 8, 2011

Take a look at Housing Helpers. Did you try the campus housing office?
posted by medusa at 1:53 PM on June 8, 2011

Response by poster: We're both PhD students, so = broke. We'd need to spend less than $2000 between the two of us.
posted by iamkimiam at 1:54 PM on June 8, 2011

Boulder is tough for housing altogether, especially for such a short-term rental. I'd start looking to Denver/suburbs if you can handle commuting.
posted by craven_morhead at 1:56 PM on June 8, 2011

Have you contacted Housing Helpers? They might have some short term listings. In general, housing is really tight (and really expensive) in Boulder. Look into extended stay hotels on US-36. Its an easy bus ride to CU Boulder.

Sorry you are having a hard time. Boulder is not really a vacation rental-y place.

On preview, medusa beat me to Housing Helpers. They are actually helpful and there isn't a fee to use them.
posted by rachums at 1:58 PM on June 8, 2011

forgive me if you've already explored this, but when i went to boulder the youth hostel had an awesome annex house that was like five bedrooms, two baths and a kitchen.

i don't know how far in advance you have to book. it has also been maybe 15 years since i took that trip. good luck!
posted by Rube R. Nekker at 3:05 PM on June 8, 2011

Best answer: The craigslist sublet and temporary page seems to have a lot of options (which makes sense because it is definitely a college town and it dries up big time in the summer).

Have you really been unsuccessful on this front across the board? It seems like there are a ton of options here. On the timing front, school let out shortly before you started looking so that would be a time where there was a lot of movement. Most of what is left should be priced to move or risk being empty for the summer. As time moves on, your options and pricing should actually get better.
posted by milqman at 4:51 PM on June 8, 2011

Do you know anyone who is there currently who could drive around and look for "for rent" signs? I know that in a lot of markets, landlords only do this and don't post online.
posted by radioamy at 7:58 PM on June 8, 2011

You could try advertising yourself as a house sitter. If you think you can handle the responsibility of maintaining a house, bringing in the mail, watering the house plants, maybe even watching a kitty... you might find something. Might be worth a shot.
posted by amanda at 8:14 PM on June 8, 2011

Best answer: My experiences are more with Denver, not Boulder (although, I did look at a lot of places in Boulder too, thinking incorrectly that there would be more summer rentals there than in Denver), but I did two summers' worth of Ph.D research in the general Denver metropolitan area a few years' back, and it was so difficult to find temporary housing that I usually just forked out for an inexpensive hotel for weeks on end.

I tried sublets from Craigslist, asking friends of friends of friends, corporate housing sites, furnished apartments, and any other option I could think of, and none of them worked out -- people wanted too much money for what they were offering, or were completely flaky, or never answered emails, or, in some cases, were lying about what they had to rent out. I don't really have any good suggestions for decent Boulder options (all of the places I ended up staying at were in the south suburbs of Denver), but I want to let you know that what you're experiencing seems completely normal for the area, from both my experiences and those of people I know who have tried to do the same thing. Frustrating, but normal. Summer sublets just don't seem to be as plentiful here as they might be elsewhere -- maybe because Boulder is so pleasant in the summer that people don't feel the need to leave?
posted by heurtebise at 10:30 PM on June 8, 2011

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