Real Estate Investment 101: Getting Started

Two Tips For Determining If You'Ll Love The Neighborhood

You may have found the house of your dreams, but it could be a nightmare living there if the home is located in a neighborhood you hate. While it can be difficult figuring out what your neighbors and the area is like without actually living there, here are two questions to ask to determine whether you'll enjoy living where the home for sale is located.

How Close is it to Shops and Entertainment?

Having shops and entertainment facilities nearby offers many benefits, such as reducing the need for a vehicle and providing opportunities to socialize. But these types of venues also mean noise and possibly safety issues, depending on what they are. For example, if there is a bar on the next street over, you'll have to contend with the noise from the traffic and bar itself as well as the possibility people may drive intoxicated near your home.

If you're not bothered by noise and like being close to places where you can party, then this may be the ideal location for you. On the other hand, if you much prefer a more peaceful environment, then you may want to look for a place that's a few miles away from all the action.

What are Your Concerns and Priorities?

Another thing that should come into play are your concerns and priorities, and not the just the obvious ones, such as safety and commute. Do you want to stay in shape? Are you concerned about the environment? Do you want to start a family in the near future? Taking stock of your preference and plans can help you determine whether a particular area will serve them.

For example, if you want to keep your carbon footprint as small as possible, then you may want to also consider the area's walkability score (i.e. how far it would take to walk to stores and services), whether there's an adequate recycling program, and whether the HOA will let you install solar panels on your home. People who are concerned about wellness and fitness may want to ensure there are local gyms and health food stores around where they can exercise and get the products they need to stay healthy.

Take a moment to sit down and write out all the things you are care about. Additionally, think about the other places where you've lived and what you liked or disliked about them. This can help you determine what you really want from your neighborhood and make it easier to select the right one.

For help finding homes that fit your needs, contact a real estate agent.