Some of the most common features buyers look for are: re-sale trends in the prospective neighborhood, schools, crime rate, number of parks, age of homes, rentals vs. homes that are owner occupied, demographics, infrastructure and associated property taxes.
Make sure that your agent has extensive knowledge of the prospective neighborhood. It is also very helpful if the agent actually lives in or nearby the neighborhoods you are considering.
Finally, it is always a good idea to walk some of the residential neighborhoods on a Saturday or Sunday...if you come across a few neighbors working in their yard, you would be surprised at how willing many of them will be to volunteer information and their feelings about their neighborhood. Many of my clients have stated that this was one of the best pre-home buying moves that they made.
If someone is coming from out of the area, and particularly, out of state, I recommend that they spend a few hours doing the types of activities they would do in their day to day lives here. At each opportunity, spark a conversation with, â€œHi, I am thinking of moving to this area. Have you lived here very long and how do you like it?â€ I suggest buyers go for coffee, stop at the news stand, perhaps stop in a local store or two. If the buyers have children, I suggest they take a drive by the school, or arrange a quick visit or tour. Chat with neighbors and ask them what they like about their communities. Residents are quite frequently proud of their communities and will often tell you more than you ever dreamed they would.
Deborah Madey - Broker
Peninsula Realty Group, Inc.
You may want to look online to sites that would verify how much crime was in the area.
I recommend reading local neighborhood blogs to get the feel of the community and it's inner workings.
Price is always an indicator of the desirability of a neighborhood, so compare similar homes in differeing areas.