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9 Tips for Choosing the Right Neighborhood when Purchasing a Home

9 Tips for Choosing the Right Neighborhood when Purchasing a Home


When purchasing a new home, it is wise to choose the right neighborhood. A home in a good neighborhood will help retain its value and make it easier to sell when the time comes. In addition to finding a home that meets all your criteria, wants and wishes for a new home, it is important to also choose the right neighborhood.

There are several things to check before purchasing a new home. Let’s discuss nine tips for choosing the right neighborhood when purchasing a home.


1. Check the Crime Rate:

The tell tale sign of a less than suitable neighborhood is an aggressive crime rate. It typically means the neighborhood has a very negative influence. Check websites for the local municipal public safety officials for crime rate statistics. Check news stories through a web site or visit the local library and check the newspaper archives for stories and other crime information.


2. Home Improvements:

Drive through the neighborhood and look at the homes. If they are well kept or there are signs of home improvements, chances are it is a good neighborhood where the residents take pride in their property. Homes that are kept in better than good condition mean the owners take pride in their homes and are vested in the neighborhood.


3. Fast Turn Around:

If homes sell quickly that is a sign the neighborhood is in demand. Your real estate agent should be able to tell you how fast homes in a particular neighborhood sell. A neighborhood in demand may also see business moving into the area providing employment opportunities for area residents.


4. Homes Hold their Value:

Homes in good neighborhoods tend to hold their value, even in times of economic down turn. Those numbers can be found through property tax records available through the municipal tax office. Your real estate agent may also be able to provide that information.


5. Schools:

The sign of a good neighborhood is a good school system. High test scores and graduation rates, as well as college placement percentages indicate a strong school system. Even though you may not be interested in the quality of the schools, the next buyer may be.


6. The Commute:

Neighborhoods that are convenient to major highways, bus lines and commuter rail lines are typically in demand neighborhoods. Convenient commuting makes it possible for people to work in the city, and live in the suburbs. Most people want an easy convenient commute to work or school and an easy connection to the method of commuting will always make for a great neighborhood.


7. The Neighborhood is Walkable:

A good neighborhood will have sidewalks that make the streets walkable. Look for public parks with walking paths and benches. Sidewalks through business areas that have benches and areas for outdoor cafes will give the neighborhood a neighborly feel. There are websites that list cities and neighborhoods according to their walkability rating.


8. Home Ownership:

Neighborhoods where home ownership is high are usually good neighborhoods. If the neighborhoods have a lot of apartment buildings and rental units, it usually attracts a transient population, or one that moves frequently. Renters typically do not have a vested interest in the neighborhood where a home owner tends to look out for others and take steps to protect the value of their property.


9. Municipal Services:

If trash is collected regularly and streets are well maintained, chances are you found a decent neighborhood. Sidewalks that are walkable and street lights are replaced as necessary are also signs the neighborhood is a good place to live. Look for fire hydrants and the location of the closest fire and police station. A firehouse nearby may lower insurance premiums.

Caitlin Weaver
Sales Representative
(416) 890-3017

Chestnut Park Real Estate Limited, Brokerage
1300 Yonge Street, Suite 100
Toronto, ON M4T 1X3

(416) 925-9191