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How to Choose a Neigborhood

Loving your house starts with loving you neighborhood. Having trouble choosing , not sure what you're looking for? Here are a few steps that will help you along the way.

Step 1 - Profile Your Perfect Neighborhood

Think about what you are really looking for. Make a list of "must-haves" at the top and "would-like-to-haves" at the bottom.

Consider the following:

  • Do you have children or are you planning to have children anytime soon? Looks for properties close to schools, parks and community centers!
  • What type of home do you want? Single-family, apartment, condo, townhouse, multi-family?
  • How far are you willing to commute? Proximity to work should be considered!
  • What is your current community lacking? Think about what you are missing now or wish you had on a day to day basis.
  • Do you want to be able to go places on foot? Do you want to be within walking distance to local restaurants or shopping?
  • Don't forget to think about what you don't want in a neighborhood.

Step 2 - Zero In on the Area

Focus your search on a specific area, working off your list of must-haves.

Step 3 - Get the Suspects

Start your research on background info for your ideal area, including:

  • School Information
  • Crime Statistics
  • Parks & Recreation
  • Neighborhood Associations
  • Tourist Attractions

Step 4 - Find the Clues

Now it is time to visit the neighborhoods, and imagine yourself and your life in the neighborhood. Use your senses in the following ways to paint a picture:

Sights: First impression, visualize yourself in the neighborhood, observe the neighborhood at different times of the day, and look for any warning signs such as a lot of "For Sale" signs or rentals, vandalism etc.

Sounds: listen for any noise coming from nearby highways, airports or nearby clubs/bars, talk to current residents of the area, see what they have to say, they could be your future neighbors!

Smells: Are there any? Unpleasant smells can certainly affect your decision to line in an area.

Taste: ask yourself if the neighborhood matches your taste in a living environment, does it meet your criteria?

Step 5 - Close the Case

Once you've chosen the right neighborhood for you, its time to find a house you love! Which can often be the hardest part. Make sure to:

  • Find out how much house you can afford - the amount of money a lender offers you is often more than you can truly afford to pay.
  • Compare your loan options - find out what mortgage is right for you, decide between fixed and adjustable rate mortgages.
  • Draw up your vision of home - now its time to think about what you want in a home!
  • Find the perfect house!

Read more here!

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