Ask those who live there.
Interview the school professionals, coaches, etc.
Park in a neighborhood and see who notices you sitting there in your car.
Walk and talk.
Of course choosing a local real estate pro can help you save a lot of time.
(Please note: when you choose an answer as a Best Answer, or at least give a thumbs up, it helps those who answer questions here.)
Be careful using Trulia to search properties for sale as their data is limited and often misleading. For instance, 633 s main is not actively on the market.
Massachusetts Premier Buyer Broker
617 848 5407 x701
The house you were looking at on 633 Main Street has been totally gutted down to the studs. I can show that house to you at your convenience. Feel free to call/text me with a time that works for you. Best of luck with your search. There are lots of nice homes on the market right now.
Haverhill is a sought after community due to the overall affordability of homes. You will get more home for the money in town than you would in he surrounding communities.
As far as locations to stay away from the answer really depends on your needs. If you want a peaceful location with privacy downtown wouldnt be for you. If you would like to be walking distance to family oriented places some Bradford neighborhoods may be perfect for you. If you are comfortable sharing with me an idea of your dream neighborhood I would be happy to make some suggestions based on my experience in town.