Tips for Finding the Perfect Neighborhood

So many of us have done it. You are browsing through homes for sale online and one catches your eye. You fall in love instantly and immediately begin to envision yourself there. That’s it, this house must be yours!

You arrive to view the home, only to find there are homes around you that look like they’re running a junkyard, the road isn’t as calm and tucked away as you’d like it to be, and there is a lot of through traffic that makes you uncomfortable, especially having little children.

With all of that being said, if you're thinking about buying a home, keep in mind that you're also investing in the neighborhood. You’ll never love your house and want to stay if you don’t also love your neighborhood.

That’s why we’re going to share tips and tricks on how to scope out and be your own detective when it comes to finding the perfect neighborhood for you!

Drive Around & Do Your Homework

One of the most effective ways to get a feel for what a neighborhood is really like is to go drive or walk around it at different times of the day. Take mental notes on what you see while scoping out the area!

Interaction With Neighbors

When walking or driving through a potential neighborhood, it’s important to be aware of any people that approach you and make eye contact with you, which could be a sign of a friendly community. Tools like Realtor.com also showcase which communities have good schools, and more data that reflect a great community and surrounding area.

Observing Surrounding Area

Check for any abandoned buildings or vacant lots, which could be used in the future for commercial development and could definitely impact the feeling in the neighborhood and impact the value of the surrounding properties. Look at the average property taxes for that specific area over a span of several years, and note any fluctuation. You could also dive deeper by contacting local resources like a city hall or Chamber of Commerce to find out about any future plans for the area such as building more homes (if a new development) that may change the feeling of the neighborhood, increase traffic, and in return, increase taxes.

Observe the conditions of the houses, yards, and streets. Look for any signs of vandalism or other deterrents like bars on windows. Especially if you have children, do your research on crime statistics in your neighborhood, whether it’s online (which can be limited,) or by calling the local police department. Lastly, don’t forget to observe traffic speeds too, and the noise level and traffic flow of the street. 

Can it Meet Your Family’s Needs?

When searching for the perfect neighborhood, it is also vital to consider your needs and your family’s. Only you know your and your family’s needs, and you must keep in mind what makes a neighborhood special to you, and what makes it a place you would want to grow and rest in! Questions you could ask yourself are:

  • Are you in pretty close proximity to grocery stores, shops, or restaurants?
  • Is the commute time to your place of work reasonable? (Distance and time both matter! Try doing a test run and seeing how long it would take you at peak times.)
  • Are there any nearby parks or activities for yourself and your children? (Bike paths, hiking trails, playgrounds, state of national parks.)
  • If using a school, is it a reasonable distance from the home? 
  • Are there many trees for shade and coziness, or sidewalks for easy strolls and bike rides? 
  • Is it an older neighborhood with variety and character, or a newer development with a lot more homes and less space and privacy between houses?

Let’s Get Searching!

Our realtors with 316 Realty Group are focused on our client's needs and understand the concern about finding the perfect neighborhood that fits your family. With local insight and knowledge of the area, we are here for you to guide you through the process of searching and finding a home and neighborhood that checks off all of your boxes. Reach out to us today and let’s begin the search together!