Moving to a new home belongs to the group of big decisions that you make only a handful of times in your life, regardless if you are going to be owning your own place or renting a property. While the moving experience can be made simple, I do not know anyone who wants to do it often! That is why choosing the right neighborhood, to call home for a long period of time (perhaps the rest of your life), requires a lot of research before you reach the final verdict about the neighborhood you choose. Below are several things to consider about a neighborhood when buying a home…how many of these items are on your home buying list?
Safety: Yours and your loved ones safety should always be top priority! While no area is completely safe, some areas provide better protection and have less crime than others. Knowing which areas in your community are low and high risk can save you a lot of angst and help keep your family relatively safe and secure. The development of satellite towns, and the perceived safety being away from the masses provides, has pushed many consumers away from living near town centers into more rural settings. That does not mean all urban areas have troubles with violence, high crime rates, or safety. In fact, some are quite safe, and many love the idea of being around others and near amenities.
Other Homes: When choosing a new place to settle down, you should always pay special attention to the houses around the one you are considering to purchase. If there are several empty homes on the street or in the subdivision, it might be a good idea to go door-to-door and ask current homeowners why there are so many vacancies.
Public Transporation: In some areas, access to affordable public transportation is critical to keep commute times reasonable and allow quick access to shopping, entertainment, and other key hubs in and around the area being considered. Also, if going green appeals to you, then living near public transportation might be a consideration worth investing in.
Schools and Education: Buyers with children want to live in areas with decent schools. It is that simple. Fortunately, homes in good school districts are typically sought after which helps keep home prices stable in those areas.
Walking and Cycling Areas: For some active consumers, it is all about the neighborhood amenities and community details. Among those important details are bike lanes and walking areas. Enjoying the outdoors in a familiar setting, and getting in some much needed exercise, are worthy considerations as buyers and investors start searching for homes. In newer communities, many subdivision and neighborhood builders understand that by building walking and/or cycling areas into the infrastructure they are not only promoting a healthier life-style but also making those neighborhoods more attractive to new residents. Whether they are using the trails or paths for exercise or enjoyment, some buyers will be swayed by their availability.
Aesthetics: Let’s face it, not many buyers want to live in an ugly neighborhood or home. When we take pride in our areas, it shows we care about the community. Conversely, when there are shabby looking houses and yards and the curb appeal is abused, it is often symptomatic of other issues, such as higher crime rates and lower safety indexes.
Proximity of Vital Services: Families often consider neighborhoods that either have basic services or are close to vital community services. Living near a police station, fire station, and hospitals/quick care facilities can save your life or the life of a family member in an emergency. In addition to vital resources, some new owners insist on living near other service resources in-case the need arises.
Taxes: While most consumers are fine with paying their share of taxes, they do not want to pay more than is necessary. That holds especially true for real estate purchases. Contact your local municipality and find out what the home you are considering has an assessed value of. That will determine the property taxes of the home over the next 1 to 3 years (depending on your location). If in doubt, check with who can get the information for you.
Noise: I do not know anyone who wants to live in an area where there are significantly loud noises. Whether it is a steady buzz from traffic, near busy commercial centers, or something else, the presence of noise is often a big turnoff for buyers. If you find the noise level is not going to lessen, and will be too uncomfortable to deal with on a continual basis, it may be best to walk away before you commit to the neighborhood and home.
As you can see, spotting a neighborhood is a multi-layered and demanding process. You might like three or four features of an area, but disapprove of some others. Probably the best way to make the final choice is by listing pros and cons for the homes and the neighborhoods you are thinking about and then simply calculating the benefits and disadvantages. Whatever you choose, always contribute to the community you live in and do everything you can to keep your home as valuable as it was when you moved into it. Always the best approach to hunt good neighbourhoods is with the help of a real estate professional click here to connect with me.