You want a dream home, but what happens when that dream home is located in a sub-par neighborhood? Many people focus on a home's size, style and amenities, but not everyone focuses on the traits of the neighborhood it is located in. If you are planning to call a house your home for the long-term, it is important to live within a community that is both inviting and caters to families with children. Here are five traits you should never overlook on your mission to find the best property for your family to reside in.
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Quality Schools Are Essential
If your children will be attending public school, it is essential that you check to see what school your child will attend when living in a specific neighborhood. Do not just consider their grade-level now, but also consider their grade level in the future. You should check to see how the schools in the region compare to others in the area, and stay away from those with poor test scores or bad reputations.
Crime Rates in the Area
No neighborhood that you find will be 100% safe. Crime is everywhere, but some areas are more prone to crime than others. You should always take time to research the crime rates in the area and find out if they are on the rise or if they are falling. Check to see if there are a lot of burglaries, robberies, murders or other violent crime that could put your family more at-risk. Sometimes, extremely low rents and property listing prices could be a red flag to look out for.
Paved Sidewalks for Active Families
You may not think that sidewalks are that big of a deal, but you need to know what sidewalks say about a community before you count out their importance. Sidewalks are a feature that is planned into all active communities. It can also be a great indication that there are amenities nearby, that people can walk to local stores, that there are local parks, and that the developers kept safety in mind. Anyone with pets or children should value paved neighborhoods.
Convenient Location and Valued Amenities
Do you want to drive 15 minutes to get to a shopping center or grocery store? Do you mind an hour commute? Will there be activities nearby for the children? These are questions you need to ask. You should review the commute, and remember that you may not always be at the same job. You also need to consider if stores and establishments that you frequent are in close proximity to the neighborhood. Sites like Renters Guide can give you a snapshot of an area and its amenities.
Is the Neighborhood Close-knit and Will it Be in the Future?
Neighborhoods where families have settled for decades tend to be much more close-knit than newer ones. If you value this closeness, you should research the community's culture. It is all about how a place makes you feel. Drive by more than once to see if it is quiet, family-oriented, and if the neighbors communicate with one another. You should also find out if there are local plans that could affect the community in the future.
You should look for your dream neighborhood and not just your dream home. By considering the important factors that matter to you, you can find a home in the right area and make it your own.