Real estate is a big decision. Once you purchase your property, it is yours for as long as you wish to keep it or until you sell it. The last thing that homeowners want is to live in a neighborhood with high crime rates and lots of traffic.
Choosing the right neighborhood to buy your next property can be a daunting task. There are so many factors to consider, it’s hard not to feel like you’re walking into unknown territory. But armed with the right information, there’s no need for fear. We’re going to take a look at some of these considerations and give you some tips on what questions you should ask yourself before buying that first home or investment property.
Figure Out What You Want in a Neighborhood
In order to find the right neighborhood, you have to know what kind of neighborhood is right for you. Whether that means a quiet place with little traffic or a building with lots of amenities and opportunities like Paramount Bay’s residential living condo can play a big part in deciding where you want to live. The more specific your needs are, the easier it will be to narrow down the choices. Once you’ve figured that out, choosing the right neighborhood becomes quite easy.
Proximity to Local Business & Shopping Centers
Proximity to retail shops, grocery stores, and other amenities is key. You want to be able to walk or even bicycle to your nearest store rather than driving. It helps you stay fit and cuts down on the carbon footprint. Plus, there’s nothing like walking home with a bag full of goodies after a long day at work.
Apart from the essentials, it’s also a great idea to see if there are any schools, daycares, and other educational facilities close by as well as recreational opportunities such as parks and train stations. The amenities you choose should be ones that will enhance the quality of your life and those of your neighbors. You can always use Google Maps, a free online map service, to see which facilities are located in the neighborhood you’re considering.
Public Transportation and Road Accessibility
You’ll want to consider both public and private transit options. If you live in a city, look for neighborhoods that are accessible by subway or light rail. If you live in the suburbs, make sure there’s easy access to highways and roads.
If it’s too difficult or time-consuming to get around, you may be stuck in traffic for extended periods of time and that could prevent you from living your best life. Public transportation can help reduce your carbon footprint, save money on gas (not to mention the cost of ownership), and help you avoid traffic jams. It’s a win-win situation.
In most cities, crime is a fact of life and it’s difficult to know which neighborhoods are safe and which ones aren’t. The best way to find out about the crime rate in an area is to go on Google or some other search engine and type in the name of the neighborhood followed by the words “crime rates”. Crime reports are also available on most city’s official websites.
Check out the local police department for neighborhood crime maps, but be aware that they are usually delayed by at least a month and therefore not entirely accurate. Another option is to use CrimeReports.com which offers free crime data in real-time. This service will show you how many crimes were reported in a certain area as well as the nature of those crimes.
Tax rates are important to consider because they can really affect your budget. You might find yourself struggling every month just to pay the bills if you choose a neighborhood with high tax rates. The best way to check this is to go on Google and type in the name of the tax assessor’s office for the community you’re interested in and their website will usually show you the tax rates.
If you already know the neighborhood’s name, go to their official website and find out more about potential future taxes in that community. It’s important to remember that some locales have higher property values which means they have higher tax rates.
The availability of work is another big consideration when choosing a neighborhood to live in or buy property in. If you spend too much time commuting because you can’t find work in your local area, you might find yourself fed up, depressed, and exhausted. For this reason, it’s always a good idea to investigate the types of businesses located in the neighborhood you’re interested in before committing yourself to live there for a long time.
There are many websites that provide information on local businesses. You should also be aware of the job opportunities in the neighborhoods surrounding your prospective location. If they are lacking, you could find yourself commuting longer distances which will cause your mental and physical stress levels to rise.
Choosing the right neighborhood to buy your next property may seem like a daunting task, but with these helpful tips, you can make an informed decision on where to live. And remember, if you’re planning on buying a house, do your due diligence at the beginning and save yourself a lot of stress.