The amount of house $400,000 would buy you 10 years ago has changed drastically — so much so that Denver was recently ranked the No. 1 metro in the nation for home sales-price gains.

That means that while in 2007 a $400,000 budget could probably get you somewhere in the neighborhood of 3,200 square feet not too far from downtown Denver, these days finding that kind of square footage at that price point means living an hour or more from the city core.

If you can manage with smaller, however, there are some options in the metro area, such as a 2,532-square-foot home on the eastern edge of Aurora, or 2,673 square feet near Sixth Avenue in Lakewood, or even a 2,015-square-foot, newer home in Denver (as long as you're willing to live close to the airport).

Considering the average home price stands at $454,547 and continues its upward trek, the DBJ is looking at homes that cost around $400,000 or less in today's metro Denver housing market to get an idea of how far your money goes.

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