5 Reasons Why Moving Into A Neighborhood Is A Good Idea For New Buyers
You have to live somewhere, right! Many consumers opt for urban settings to be closer to the office, the downtown atmosphere, or because of the hustle and bustle it brings. Many others would prefer a more suburban setting away from the lights and hoopla. In fact, according to a realtor.com article, those looking for a home in a suburbia neighborhood have increased by 6.7% in the last year. Why the increase in neighborhood living?
While the list is nearly limitless, based on your specific desires and needs, below are 5 reasons why real estate buyers are actively seeking homes in neighborhoods to live, grow and raise a family in.
The Price is Right
No one wants to overpay, especially for housing. What we all want is excellent value for a reasonable price with an opportunity to make a profit when we eventually sell. According to the same realtor.com article the median size of a traditional style home in a suburban neighborhood is over 300 square feet larger (median of 1,540 square feet) with an extra bedroom than you typically find in an urban setting.
All things being equal, it is no wonder many are opting for more space to start raising a family. Whether it is the appeal of an extra room or the tranquility of subdivision living, you can get very good value for your hard earned dollars in a neighborhood setting.
Crime and Safety Concerns
Living in a safe environment is near the top of the list for buyers and is a good reason many are opting to look for homes in neighborhoods over other options. It is important to do some prep work and check out any potential neighborhood at several times during the day/night as traffic, visitors, and safety in general can swing from one side of the pendulum to the other depending on activity.
One of the easiest ways to quickly determine if it is a safe place to live is to ask several existing homeowners to hear what they have to say. Getting a few good inputs can give you piece of mind as you prepare to make your home purchase decision. Another solid option is to preview what others are saying on sites like neighborhoodscout.com to determine if it is a safe area with a low crime rate.
School Effect on Neighborhoods
Real estate buyers with kids will put good schools as a priority when they start looking for a home to buy. That is why it is a good idea to understand the school zoning for neighborhoods you are considering. While zones can shift slightly over time, you can get a great understanding of where your kids are scheduled to attend school, and if those schools meet your needs and/or requirements. If a particular neighborhood is not in a school district you like, then you need to move on to view another neighborhood with schools you want your children to attend.
A visit to greatschools.org to assess the available schools is always a smart move. Location is always a contributing factor during re-sale, and knowing many will be looking for decent schools, it makes sense to put in some effort to marry up your neighborhood and schools to get the best available of both.
It is true that some pick a neighborhood because it provides peace and quiet or is off the beaten path. However, the reality for many consumers is they want to be situated reasonably close to local churches, educational institutions, entertainment, highways/interstates, hobby related activities, medical facilities, parks, restaurants, shopping, and an assortment of other venues depending on their likes, wants, and personal needs.
Only you can answer what those local items are and the impact if you do not live close to them. No doubt, whichever ones you deem most important will have a major impact on which communities you want to preview to determine the neighborhoods worth buying a home in.
If you know anything about them you either love HOAs or hate them. The right answer is whatever works best for you. If you like rules, specific requirements, uniformity, etc. then an HOA neighborhood may be a good fit for you. If they are enforced, there is the possibility property values will remain strong which can generate a windfall when you are ready to sell your home.
If you do not want anyone else telling you what you can do on your property, how many cars can be parked in your driveway, what color your shutters can/cannot be, bug you about yard/exterior maintenance, or have influence over some property decisions, then living in an HOA neighborhood may not be the best option for you. Only you can decide which side of the homeowners association equation you fall on.
Parting Neighborhood Tips
Ultimately your lifestyle, the amount you are willing to spend, and your personal/family needs will outweigh all other considerations and help you pinpoint the ideal neighborhood for you. While some will jump for all that cities have to offer, and others will prefer living in a more rural country setting, a large proportion of homeowners will end up choosing to live in a neighborhood community.
The re-sale value is typically good, they are popular with all age groups, their is often value both in price paid/sold and in size, model, and amenities, and they are a staple of of U.S. home life in many areas. If you live in a neighborhood that has and is everything you hoped it would be, kudos to you! If not, it may be time to contact a local real estate professional to help you find the neighborhood that works best for you.