Choosing the Right Neighborhood is as Important as Choosing the Right House!


There are many factors to consider when buying a home, and the neighborhood it’s in is at the top of that list. A great neighborhood sells a home; real estate agents say. It also helps your home hold value and makes it easy to sell when you decide to move on.

Below are few of the many factors to consider when choosing your new neighborhood


Scout out the Neighborhood!

It is important that you scout the neighborhood in person. You live in more than your house. Talk to people who live there. Drive through the entire area at different times of the day, morning, afternoon, evening, and late at night, as well as going during the week and on weekends. Look carefully at how well other homes in the area are being maintaine. Are they painted? Are the yards well cared for? Are parked cars in good condition? Don’t think you know a place if you’ve only seen it in the middle of a weekday. Return repeatedly, at night and on weekends, to get a realistic picture


Neighborhood Factors to Consider -

Look for things like access to major thoroughfares, highways, and shopping. Listen for noise created by commerce, roads, railways, public areas, schools, etc. Smell the air for adjacent commerce or agriculture. Check with local civic, police, fire, and school officials to find information about the area. Research things like soil and water. Look at traffic patterns around the area during different times of the day and drive from the area to work. Is the neighborhood near parks, churches, recreation centers, shopping, theaters, restaurants, public transportation, schools, etc.? Does the neighborhood belong to a Homeowner’s Association?


Safety

Federal Fair Housing laws prohibit real estate agents from commenting on neighborhood safety, so get a better picture by speaking with residents. You can also visit sites like SafeWise.com and NeighborhoodScout.com to see crime reports for a particular neighborhood. A more direct approach: Talk to the local police to see what crime is like in the area, says Wayne.


School District

Whether you have children or not, a neighborhood with a good school district is important because it impacts the resale of the homes in that community. Using a site like GreatSchools  and KGIS   can be helpful to research area schools to see what the school zoning is for various neighborhoods and confirm whether or not a certain home falls within your desired school zone.  


New Home Construction

When homebuilders descend on a particular location, it’s a sign of a hot neighborhood, says Findel. Growing demand among homebuyers also typically leads to an increase in home prices — which is always a good thing to see when you’re searching for a great place to live.


Homes sell quickly

Fast turnaround of homes for sale indicates a neighborhood in hot demand. A real estate agent can run “comps” (short for “comparables”) to tell you how quickly homes are selling.

Other clues to a neighborhood in demand include employers moving in with new jobs, a growing population and a limited supply of homes for sale.


City services are good

Is the trash picked up? Are streets paved and well-maintained? Beware of broken streetlights, cracked sidewalks and vacant homes with cracked windows and an overgrowth of weeds.


Taxes

Tax rates vary from town to town. Tax information and rates are available to the public. Also, information regarding specific properties assessed value (Different than appraised and market value) is public knowledge. By calling the local municipality or accessing their website, this information should be able to be obtained. Always keep in mind, a great real estate agent should be able to find out what the current tax rates are. 


Resources and Tools to Find Information Regarding Neighborhoods


  • A neighborhood's walkscore or walkability rating is based on whether it’s possible to visit nearby grocery stores, coffee shops, restaurants, schools, and parks on foot. 
  • NeighborhoodScout provides crime statistics and other important local data to help you decide if a neighborhood is right for you.
  • Family Watchdog maps the addresses of registered sex offenders in your neighborhood.
  • City-data- On this website, you can find statistics and detailed profiles for many cities and neighborhoods in the U.S. Data include demographic 
  • CrimeReports - Search CrimeReports by region, address, zip code, or law enforcement agency to see a map with icons identifying recent police activity.
  • CrimeMapping.com is a police report-tracking service that shows on a map the different crimes reported in a neighborhood or city. It provides valuable information about recent crime activity in a neighborhood.
  • AreaVibes helps you find the best place to live based on the factors you deem important.
  • SpotCrime maps crimes and delivers crime alerts via email, Facebook, Twitter, and several other platforms.
  • GreatSchools can be helpful to research area schools to see what the school zoning
  • KGIS is also a great tool that lists the school zones for any address within Knox County.


@TXBharat Dec 3,2020



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