Searching for a neighborhood is a lot like shopping for a new pair of shoes. The goal is to find the right fit. Whether your lifestyle is active or low key, the right investment can really pay off.  What’s your lifestyle? Are you looking to settle into retirement or purchase your first home? We’ve listed ten tips on what to look for in perfect neighborhood.

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Before signing on the dotted line, check out the crime rate statistics. Most real estate sites provide the zip code’s crime rates in comparison to the national average.

Profile your Neighborhood

Complete a profile of your ideal neighborhood. What are you looking for in a neighborhood? After completing your wish list, identify potential compromises and begin your search.

Schooling

If you’re a parent, choosing the right fit for your child is crucial for their success and development. Different neighborhoods have different school districts. Even if you have a great school right around the corner, it doesn’t mean your child can attend if the real estate isn’t in that district.

Commute time

How far is your home from school or work? Are you willing to drive a long distance to reach these destinations? If you don’t own a car, do you have access to a bus system? These are all questions you should consider while scoping out the perfect neighborhood.

Associations

Check out additional fees such as a Home Owner’s Association. If so, what’s the yearly fee? Do they have construction or lawn restrictions?

Check-in

Drop by at different times throughout the day. How’s the traffic in the morning or during rush hour? Do you see families out and about, or do your neighbors keep to themselves?

conversation-1177860_1920Ask around

Pay a visit to a few of your future neighbors and get their take on the community. Ask them questions like “What would they change?” Gathering this sort of information will guide you in the right direction.

Read the Warning Signs

A street filled with foreclosures or for-sale signs can be a sure sign of a horrible environment. These signs could also bring down the potential property value of surrounding homes.

Historic or New?

How old is the neighborhood? A new development will require less upkeep but make come with a hefty homeowner’s fee. If you choose an older home, be prepared to take on any unexpected costs including upgrades.

Upcoming Plans

Where is this neighborhood going in the future? Spend time in your real estate agent’s local planning office in regards to the city’s future plans for your area.

 

Still searching for the right neighborhood fit? Let Melissa Clements guide you as she uses her experience to help you find your next home.