Finding the house of your dreams can be tricky, and the neighborhood you choose can and should have a LOT to do with it. The neighborhood that holds your next home will inevitably impact most factors of your family’s daily life. For the first time homebuyer and anyone else curious on how to ensure you are making an educated decision when making this life-changing choice- here are a few tips to get you started!


  1. OPTIONS– Give yourself a few options of neighborhoods to compare. Try to narrow list down to your top 3 choices and then you can begin to dig a little deeper.
  2. AREA– As much as possible, observe the area day and night. Check out your potential future neighborhood around different times to get an idea for what it would really look like to live there.
  3. RECORDS– Public records are free! Jump on your computer and take advantage. Spend the time to search the crime rate in the area to gauge how safe this neighborhood would be for you and/or your family.
  4. SCHOOLS– If you have or are planning to have children, it is very important to research the school system and make sure that you live in a school district that you approve of.
  5. PRIDE– How involved are the members of this neighborhood in the community, school, clubs, or activities that are important to you? It is important to know that these neighbors get along and that you feel that you would as well.
  6. LOOK– Drive around the neighborhood and check out the homes. Do the neighbors maintain their lawns? Do they have a sense of pride in their home’s appearance and upkeep? This could be a good indicator of future property value for your home.
  7. KNOCK– Talk to the neighbors. Find out what you can about the neighborhood, the HOA, and anything else you may want insider opinions on. You would be surprised how much information they are willing to give away!
  8. COMMUTE– Test your commute to work/school/stores during the times you would be likely to go. This can give you a good idea of whether or not this will fit in with your current schedules.
  9. SURROUNDING AREA– It’s important to make sure you can access your favorite grocery store, shops, restaurants, and recreational activities without too much hassle from your potential new neighborhood.

Once you have applied some (or all) of these tips to your list of top neighborhoods, the comparing should become a little easier! And remember, if you can find a great Realtor, local to your area, he or she is bound to do most of the work for you!