Where To Buy - The City Or The Suburbs?
One of the first decisions you’ll have to make when starting your home-hunt is whether you want to live in the city, the suburbs or right out into the country. The city is often alluring for its vibrancy and excitement while heading further out towards open country can offer up some much needed fresh air. It’s a long-term choice, so weighing up the lifestyle choice that's best for you is a vital step towards finding the perfect home.
Here we want to provide you with a quick and simple list of the some of the most essential aspects to consider when making your decision. Have a breeze through these to make sure you’ve covered the most vital local factors.
Whether you currently have children or not, this factor is definitely always one to keep a sharp eye on. Schools effectively act as indicators of a neighbourhoods overall condition.
Homebuyers who do have children will always be very concerned with levels of crime, security, quality local schools, and a healthy environment for raising a family. Check out a school's recent academic performance levels, class sizes, and entry standards to gather a good bearing on the type of students and families that school will attract.
You’ll want amenities that suit your lifestyle. Most people want to know all about local parks, attractive open spaces, the nearest high street, as well as the nature of local shops and dining. Where’s the nearest super grocery store, fitness centre or mall? In most cases, no simple map or any amount of internet research will provide you with a better understanding than to simply get out, explore, and experience a location for yourself road by road.
Another great way to get a grip on what's happening in a local area is to read into its local press. Local magazines and online community sites will give you a heads up current projects and what leading figures in the area are talking about.
The local economy
A thriving local economy will be filled with attractive residential neighbourhoods and growing competitive businesses. These are signs that the area is prospering while generating a healthy and stable contribution in terms of taxes, which in turn reflects the levels of public service the area receives. Town or cities with strong educational institutions like universities and public service organizations are usually a safe bet in terms of maintaining economic stability.
Transportation and commuting details
Moving out of town but want to keep your career within the urban realm? You’ll need to know all about travel times on public transport or on the road. How close to the neighbourhood is the nearest train or bus station of choice? And how much will your commute cost you per month? One of the most important aspects for you to consider is how much time you want to spend travelling each work day.
There’s no better way to get an accurate reading of commute times than by actually trying out your commute journey during peak times on various days within the week.
Comparing neighbourhood positions
It can be a great idea to get a map of the local area and place dots on it marking the positions of all the places you know you’ll be travelling to most often. This will give you a clear display of the areas that are most practical for the lifestyle you’re aiming for. In a lot of cases, homes positioned further out of cities can offer better value for money in terms physical qualities, but if you commute, you’ll be weighing up the saving against your time spent travelling each day.
Nothing beats taking a drive or walk around a location at night or at different times of the day to get a real feel for how safe it really is. You might also want to check in on recent news regarding the local authorities. Where’s the nearest fire station, police headquarters, and hospital with emergency services?
By checking through the above factors, you’ll effectively be highlighting your own priorities. Building a good understanding of your own preferences is half the battle. Once you know the key aspects to prioritize, the rest of the home-buying challenge tends to fall into place. Most people will find the hunt gets easier the more focused your parameters become.