You should also love the neighbourhood.

There are so many things you need to consider when planning to buy a new home, whether you are a first-time buyer or thinking of moving to a smaller or larger property, make sure you check the most important items in your wish-list.

Choosing the right neighbourhood should be top of that list and will surely affect one of the most important decisions you will be making.

Selecting the best neighbourhood is very subjective but is important for many reasons. When you buy a property you need to look into the future as you will be committed for quite a few years.

So what would you need to consider when choosing the right neighbourhood for you and your family?

First of all, you need to get to know the area, visit the immediate vicinity of your short-listed property at different times of the day. What are your priories? Are you looking for a quiet location? Is it easy to park on the street? Are there any entertainment spots nearby or maybe a pleasant jogging route? Do you have kids? Which school will they attend and how will they get there?

What about the crime level in the immediate area? When buying a home you want to know that your neighbourhood is safe for you and your family to walk around. Check out the closest bus route that you or your children might need to use. How is the street lighting in the area?

What are the other buildings in the surrounding streets like? Are they well maintained? Are the neighbours proud of their locality? Are the streets clean and pleasant to walk on?

It might be wise to visit the area on different days and at different times.

What about shops, cafes and other necessities that will add to your comfort in everyday living? Would you need to use a car to go shopping for that missing carton of milk? You might want to live in a quiet suburban street but make sure it’s out of choice, not omission that you need to commute to go anywhere.

Before committing to a purchase of your next home, make sure that you have a good feel of the surrounding neighbourhood. Take time to drive and walk around like you already live there. It’s a little extra work but a good investment in your future happiness.

It might be a good idea to speak with the neighbours, go into the local shops and get a feel of what’s around. If you are thinking of purchasing in a larger town or city, do some online research and ask your Estate Agent for their take on the area.

What about your immediate neighbours? Having good neighbourly relations is surely an added benefit to look for when purchasing a property. Good neighbours look out for each other and, consciously or not, get used to each other’s habits and can quickly pick up when something isn’t quite right. It’s important to have good neighbours that look after each other.

Once you know your neighbours you will start feeling safer and more comfortable when walking around the area.

A good neighbourhood also has a sense of community. With our lives being so busy it is often difficult to even get to know the family that lives over the next garden wall. Having friendly neighbours that you can casually greet when walking by is always a pleasant thing to have.

So when shopping around for that perfect next home, make sure to add the neighbourhood to that important list of must-haves. This will ensure that your perfect home doesn’t hide any not so pleasant surprises.

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