Choosing The Best Neighborhood


Buying a house and then moving into it can be a daunting task, and you’re not just choosing a particular house, but also a neighborhood. You’ll have to choose a good neighborhood, because no matter how nice your home is, the location is just as important.

Deciding on moving to a ‘good neighborhood’ depends on you – what you prefer and what your situation is like. If you are moving with kids, then you probably want a good school district and a safe neighborhood where they can feel safe playing outside. If you’re single or have no kids, then you want somewhere that’s convenient to your work or to where you spend a lot of time.

Safety, of course, is always a top concern, and so do you research. You can use the Internet to find out crime statistics in an area. Big cities and urban areas will have more detailed information. If you really want to get an idea, call the local police station. They may even be able to tell you about how active the neighborhood is in crime prevention or how strong the police force is.

The only real way to get a feel of a place is to go there yourself. Try to drive around the neighborhood. See if there’s any alarm signs, like graffiti on walls, broken or boarded up windows on homes or high fences and “beware of dog” signs. Also, what are the conditions of the other homes like? Do they keep their yards neat? Are the streets clean? Also, try to observe the people around the community – are they friendly and do they make eye contact? Try to chat up the neighbors and ask them what they like/don’t like about the neighborhood. When you do visit the neighborhood, try to do it in the evening as well, so you know what street light and noise levels are like in the evening, when you need to go to sleep.

Once you determine the surroundings are safe, see if it’s convenient for you to live there. What will your commute time be like? Try driving or commuting from the potential home to your office, so you know what to expect and time yourself. Also, check how far you are from the nearest airport or train station. Then, you’ll have to figure out where the nearest supermarkets, store, restaurants are, as well as other amenities that are important to you.

Next, think about property values and taxes. Try to do your research on how much properties in the area cost. Many things can affect it, so do some thorough research. Also, try to anticipate how much real estate tax you should expect to pay, so you don’t get surprised one tax time comes.

Choosing the best neighborhood really depends on your preference and situation. Just do your research and legwork, and you’ll make the best choice on where you will move.