Much has been made of selecting the right house. Does it have an ample parking space and 3-tier security system? Is it affordable? Is it child-friendly? These are a few of the questions that typically do the rounds. But what about the neighborhood?
According to various property experts, home buyers should choose their neighborhood before they start looking for a house. After all, it’s pointless rushing into buying your dream home if the area in which it’s situated, is a complete mismatch with your lifestyle.
Here are the things you need to consider when deciding whether a neighborhood is right for you.
There are a few non-negotiables when considering a neighborhood. Although no neighborhood is completely immune to the scourge, there are areas that are veritable crime magnets. With this in mind, pay a trip to the local police station and inquire about the area’s stats. They may surprise you. Residents’ associations and local security companies are also a good source of crime-related information.
Public transport is another aspect to consider. Does your neighborhood of choice offer anything along these lines? It may well be that you don’t have access to a car or want to save money when commuting. As such, easy access to buses, taxies or train stations might play an important role in this equation. Similarly, proximity to key local amenities, your place of work, friends, and family is another important factor to ponder.
Plans and growth prospects
Do your research. Understanding what is planned for the neighborhood could well make or break your buying decision. Perhaps a highway has been earmarked for the area. Maybe it’s due to receive a shot in the arm in the form of a new organic craft market which could boost the area’s values and desirability in the future. It’s worth finding out.
Another aspect that experts say should be considered is the potential for growth in the value of your home. An area’s historical property values are a good indication of the future investment in a neighborhood. Various reports can be bought online to provide a clear picture of the kind of growth an area is experiencing.
Show day vs every day
Don’t believe everything you see and hear during the show day. Visit the neighborhood at different times of the day and on different days of the week to see whether traffic noise, barking dogs, the crèche next door or a nearby nightclub will bother you. Such issues may seem trivial now but once the honeymoon period at your new home has worn off, they will matter.
Lastly, narrow down your search to a few select areas. It’s pointless searching an entire city for the perfect neighborhood. Decide on a few areas that you are comfortable with and which meet the majority of your needs, and then stick to those areas. The right house will present itself.