6 Things You Should Look for in a New Neighborhood
November 13, 2020
4 MINUTE READ
If you’re shopping around for a home, you know that in order to find the perfect house, you also have to find the perfect neighborhood — no small feat, especially if you’re moving to an entirely new area and don’t entirely understand the subtle nuances that can distinguish one neighborhood from the next.
But how can you decide which neighborhood is right for you? Are there markers that can help you recognize your ideal neighborhood? Here are 6 things to look for in a new neighborhood.
Rising home prices
One of the best indicators of a great neighborhood is home prices that are on the rise. But with home prices rising all over the United States, how can you tell what you should be looking for? Take a look at the median home price for the US and then, using this number as a benchmark for growth, look for a place where home values are increasing at a faster rate than the national average.
Even if you don’t have kids, pay attention to the schools in the neighborhood, since schools can significantly impact a home’s resale value. In fact, more than 90 percent of prospective homebuyers reported that schools were an important factor in their home search.
You can search for school ratings online, but keep in mind that data for these sites is often fairly limited. To get a better idea of a school district, take a look at everything from graduation rates to college acceptance, SAT scores, and AP enrollment.
Activities and amenities
Whether you’re a young professional or a growing family with children, local amenities are always going to be important to where you live. Make sure that the neighborhood has everything you’re looking for and that suits your lifestyle.
For example, families with children may be interested in having parks or libraries nearby. A young professional with a dog may be looking for close proximity to a dog park.
Stop the car and take a stroll through the neighborhood. Do you feel comfortable walking around the neighborhood, or do you find yourself dodging cars or even unable to get around?
A neighborhood’s walkability has been linked to higher home values, especially in cities and urban areas. What’s more, residents of “walkable” neighborhoods tend to trust their neighbors more and also get out and about in the community.
A good ratio of owner-occupied homes to rentals
The national average ratio of homeowners to renters is two to one, but you should look for a neighborhood that has significantly more owner-occupied homes than rentals. But why? Typically, homeowners take more pride in the appearance of their homes than renters, and this can lead to an increase in home values.
If other houses on the street have shutters hanging off the house or shingles coming off the roof, you can rest assured that this can impact the value of your home, if you move into the neighborhood.
The strength of the local job economy can directly impact the value of homes in the area, so look for a neighborhood in an area with a low unemployment rate. Also, consider looking for neighborhoods with above-average job growth, such as areas with major employers moving in.
Looking for a new neighborhood with Reali
At Reali, all of our agents are experts in the areas they serve — and we’d love to help you with your real estate search. We’ll support you through the entire process, from search to negotiations, throughout the paperwork process and close. We combine agent expertise with smart technology and products like Reali Cash Offer to help you find and WIN the home you want.