When buying a home, location is everything. It may seem easy to find a neighborhood filled with beautiful homes and think it’s the right one for you. But there are other factors to consider when choosing a neighborhood that are not as evident, such as budget, non-negotiable home features, and proximity to the things you can’t live without.
When it comes to searching for a new neighborhood, here’s a few things to consider.
Property taxes can play a huge role in your overall cost of living. Property taxes for specific homes are typically included in online property listings.
What to consider: How much will my property taxes be?
Safety and Crime
Before you commit to a home, search online for crime stats for the neighborhood you want to move to. Determining if the crime level is acceptable is part of the process of choosing the right neighborhood.
We can guide you to resources to help answer questions about a neighborhood, but we can’t give you an opinion about neighborhoods per the Fair Housing Act. The act aims to provide equal access to housing for all groups of people and to protect against discrimination.
What to consider:
- What is the crime rate in this particular neighborhood? How about the neighborhood next door?
- What level of crime do I feel comfortable with?
Topography and Geography
Land geography can play a role in costs — especially if you’re overlooking a scenic vista or you’re right by the water. On the flipside, look out for flood zones or other danger-prone areas when making a decision.
What to consider:
- Do I need special insurance in addition to homeowners insurance?
- Is this property in a flood zone?
When buying a home, your agent can check for recent home sales in the desired neighborhood to get an idea of the potential value of homes in that area. Usually, similar homes in the same neighborhood will sell within a few thousand dollars of each other.
Question(s) to ask:
- What are the comps in this area?
- What’s the projected growth rate for this area?
School zones come to mind when thinking of location, especially if you have children (or plan to have them soon), as they tend to affect home values. If schools are important to you, evaluate the schools in your neighborhood and which homes fall into which district. Additionally, there may be community centers or parks that increase the value of the neighborhood.
What to consider:
- What school would my child attend if we moved here?
- Are there parks or community centers in this area?
Using these factors as a guide for finding the right neighborhood can help you evaluate what you care about and make the decision that’s right for you.
Check back on our blog every week for more real estate advice and local articles about living in Albuquerque. And make sure to follow us on Facebook for up to date real estate news for Albuquerque and surrounding areas.
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