How to Choose the Perfect Neighbourhood for Your Family

Dated: April 22 2021

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How to Choose the Perfect Neighbourhood for Your Family

If you are looking to buy your first home, or even just relocate your family, there are many important things to consider when deciding on which house is right for you. Buying a home is more than just that, it’s buying into a part of the community that surrounds you. If you don’t love the neighbourhood you live in or get along with the neighbours beside you, it makes it extremely hard to love and enjoy living in your own home. Below we have provided some great tips for finding the ideal neighbourhood for your family!

Make a List and Ask Yourself Important Questions

When thinking about moving into a new home, take the time to make a list of the things that are most important to you and your family. Some of these list items are obvious desires such as the number of bedrooms, bathrooms, etc. However, it is important to think about more than just the inside of the home. We have provided the list below for some things to consider before deciding on where your new home should be located:

Type of Home

Do you know what type of home is your ideal home? Is it a single-family detached home, multi-family home, apartment, townhouse, bungalow? What about the type of yard you hope to have? Determining the type of home that best suits your lifestyle and goals is an important part of finding the right neighbourhood. Some neighbourhoods are limited to one type of home, while others have a mix of different kinds.

Nearby Amenities

Take the time to decide which amenities are important to have nearby your future home. Whether it is a grocery store, a gas station, a selection of restaurants and shopping or a hospital, think about what adds value to your household. Additionally, it is important to decide if you want these amenities to be within walking distance, a short drive away, or even accessible by public transit. Determining what amenities are important to you and how close you’d like to be will narrow down your choices for ideal neighbourhoods. 

Quiet or Busier Neighbourhood?

When you are looking for a new place to call home it is a good idea to take a walk or drive throughout the neighbourhood to see how it fits into your lifestyle. Are you looking for a busier and active community to be a part of or are you looking for a quiet and quaint neighbourhood with minimal traffic and noise pollution? Explore the area several times throughout the day such as morning rush hour, lunch time, dinner time and even at night. This will give you a better idea of what the neighbourhood feels like throughout the day and decide if it would be a good fit for your family.

Older or Newer Home?

You’ve considered the type of home you want to live in, now it’s time to consider the age of the home. Neighbourhoods with older homes can vary drastically from neighbourhoods with new build homes, in terms of regulations, standards and overall expectations. Additionally, you want to evaluate the condition of your potential home and the other homes in the neighbourhood, noting abandoned or neglected houses. A real estate agent is able to help you determine the value of the neighbourhood and its likely trends for the future.

Close-Knit or Private Community?

Do you want to live in a neighbourhood where residents are actively engaged with each other with community BBQs, and where everyone knows each other by first names? Or, would you prefer a private neighbourhood, where people keep to themselves and go about their daily lives without interacting with residents around them? It is important to decide which type of community would suit your family best.

Other Things to Consider

Current Residents

When your exploring potential neighbourhoods take a look around at the existing residents, is it mostly young families, college students or retirees? It is important to find a neighbourhood where your family will fit in and you can live your lifestyle comfortably.

Commute Times

When looking for the perfect neighbourhood for your family, it is important to consider how your daily life will be impacted by your move, most importantly, your commute to work. Determine how far you’re willing to travel to work and consider other factors such as rush hour traffic, alternative routes, etc.

Nearby Parks/Recreations

If you have children, pets or just love the outdoors take a look at what neighbourhoods have parks, playgrounds and other recreational activities close by. 

Future Developments

Take a look and inquire if there are any future developments happening in the area or if there could be some in the future. Some developments will add value to the price of your home, some can increase your property taxes and others may change the desirable characteristics of your neighbourhood such as increased traffic.

Possible Nearby Deterrents

Take a close look and listen in potential neighbourhoods, you want to take a look at potential deterrents such as nearby train tracks, bars and clubs, airports, landfills, etc. These types of things too close to a house can cause frustration and decrease the value of your home for future buyers.

Questions to Ask Your Real Estate Agent

When it comes to determining the right neighbourhood for your family, it comes down to personal choices about what you value most. An experienced real estate agent who is knowledgeable in the local market will not only be able to help you find the neighbourhoods that suit you best based on the questions above, but will also be able to answer specific questions about the neighbourhoods you’re interested in. Take a look at some of these questions that local real estate experts can help you answer:

Crime Rate

Most real estate agents will know how the neighbourhoods in their area stand up against national crime data. It is important for the safety and security of your family that you find a neighbourhood you can feel comfortable in.

School District / Sought After Schools

Real estate agents know that parents value the education that their children receive and they are experts in local school districts and most importantly, the sought after schools in the area. They will be sure to inform you of the neighbourhoods that have the best schools, not only does this help your children but it also helps the future value of your home.

Property Taxes

Experienced real estate agents that are experts in the local market will be able to provide the average for property taxes in a given neighbourhood. This is important when determining your overall budget for buying your home.

Current and Historical Value of the Property/Neighbourhood

Lastly, real estate agents are able to provide you with the history and real estate trends in your desired neighbourhood. This will give you insight into the pace of the market and the value of your prospective home over the past years. Additionally, they will give you the current market value of specific properties you are interested in and help you secure a home for the right price. 

Looking for a Local Expert in the Niagara Region Real Estate Market?

Are you thinking about buying a home in the Niagara Region? The experienced team of real estate brokers at Davids & DeLaat are dedicated to finding you not only the perfect neighbourhood for your family, but the perfect home. Take a look at the local real estate listings today to get started! If you see something you like, don’t hesitate to contact our team!

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Shawn DeLaat

Helping people buy and sell real estate is Shawn’s passion. Now in his 20th year, he’s proud to be in the top 1% of all realtors for sales production in the entire Niagara region. Shawn’s outgoi....

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