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Best Places to Live... Even Now

Best Places to Live... Even Now
Photo by Dana Wheelock

(page 3 of 3)

Best Place for Men Seeking Women

Apple Valley

Apple Valley ties with Roseville when it comes to prospects for men seeking women: 60 percent of all single, divorced, or widowed individuals in the community are female, according to a 2007 study called the American Community Survey (ACS). But sift the figures more finely and you’ll see that a bache-lor would be wiser to settle in Apple Valley. Apple Valley has some 9,850 potentially eligible single females—almost 1,200 more ladies than you’ll find in Roseville.

Best Place for Women Seeking Men


It’s a small place. But when it comes to the mating game, women have the upper hand. Men comprise 55 percent of the all single, divorced, or widowed individuals in community.

Best Place for Seniors


Edina and Roseville share the honor of being of the Grayest Communities in the Twin Cities: 35 percent of households in each city have one or more people who are 65 or older, according to an analysis of 2007 American Community Survey data. But Edina garnered an attractive edge on the competition last year with the opening of the Westin Edina Galleria, a condo-hotel development that provides its permanent inhabitants with all the amenities of a Starwood Resort experience. Ellen Beecher, an agent with Coldwell Banker Burnet, says many of the residents filling the Westin and other condo developments have lived in Edina for years but now wish to downsize. “They love the small community, the access to the medical centers, highways, restaurants, golf courses,” Beecher says. “They don’t want to leave.”



“If you’re remodeling an old house, it’s important to stay true to the period of the house,” says real-estate agent Tanya Hietpas. This is especially vital in Minneapolis and St. Paul, where homes range considerably in age. Research the style of your residence and find out what makes it fit that look. Polishing up the particulars—stained glass, unique fixtures—will make it more attractive to future buyers.

Spend your money on high-end finishes that will capture attention. Shawn Nelson, president of New Spaces, a Burnsville remodeling company, suggests adding custom cabinets to a kitchen space or replacing conventional light fixtures with art-glass models. Small, inexpensive changes can often have more impact than larger ones like, say, moving a wall.

Investing in increased energy efficiency can pay off in spades, says Nelson, both before and during a sale. Install adequate insulation in the attic. Add storm panels on windows and replace doors. Swap power-hogging appliances with Energy Star–rated ones. The payoff will be noticeable.

Joel Hoekstra is the managing editor of Minnesota Monthly.

* Download a comprehensive five-page chart (pdf) detailing what homes are worth in more than 180 Twin Cities communities. 


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