What’s a Good Location?
We’ll give you a number of ways to know what’s important for livability and resale value, but ultimately you will need to decide for yourself what a “good” neighborhood is based on your lifestyle & preferences. In Where Should You Buy a House? we have a thorough checklist of factors to consider in a neighborhood and location.
Get Out and About. The best way to find a neighborhood you like is to spend time in ones you’re interested in. Walk around or ride a bike and imagine living there. Ask neighbors how they like living here and what are the neighbors like?
You should talk to at least two neighbors before ever deciding to buy a home!
Schools. Good schools = good neighborhoods. Even if you don’t have kids, don’t want them or don’t even like them, schools are important! They are a major factor determining price and value in a neighborhood. Greatschools.org has school ratings.
Crime. Most larger cities have websites that discuss crime levels. You can also go to Crimereports.com for crime data or call your local police department. Ask neighbors what kind of crime they’ve seen and you may get the best info!
Go see what traffic flow is like at different times of day and days of the week when traffic patterns are likely to change.
Homeowners Association. When you find a neighborhood you like, ask your Buyer’s Agent if it has a Homeowners Association. They’ll have rules that improve the area but also restrict what you are allowed to do. See What’s a Homeowners Association.
Your local area may also have a website that tells all about specific neighborhoods. Ask your Buyer’s Agent what the best sites are for the areas you like.
Do you like walking to restaurants, stores, etc? Look up an addresses on Walkscore.com to see how “walkable” it is.How to Checkout a Neighborhood,
Choose a state from the drop-down menu for specific state information related to this lesson.