Deciding Where to Buy: Top 4 Considerations When Choosing a Neighborhood

Man on wheelchair strolls though neighborhood with family

Relocating, even locally, is a major decision. Where you live has a profound effect on your lifestyle, so it is important to ask yourself “What do I want out of my next neighborhood?” Researching neighborhoods can help you narrow down choices and streamline the property search for your real estate agent. In this article, we’ve gathered some of the top considerations of choosing a neighborhood during your real estate journey.

1. Safety First: Peace of Mind in a New Neighborhood

The safety of your prospective neighborhood is of utmost importance during your home search. While there are many factors that can contribute to safety, there are a few key measures that can help you evaluate your decision:

2. Convenience and Amenities: Quality of Life in Your New Neighborhood

The availability of amenities and conveniences can significantly affect the quality of life in a neighborhood. Easy access to grocery stores, pharmacies, hospitals and other crucial services is essential. It can save you time, add convenience to your daily routine and may be critical in an emergency. Finding neighborhoods with parks, community centers or sports facilities also offer opportunities for outdoor activities, exercise and socializing, especially for young or multi-generational families.

Good public transportation options can help simplify commuting and reduce the need for a car, saving you money on costs like gas and maintenance. Walkable neighborhoods also indicate an increased perception of safety (which helps discourage crime), reduced air and noise pollution and overall may help improve quality of life for you and your family.

3. Education and Opportunities: A Paramount Factor for Your Family

Education is a significant consideration, especially for families with children. Research the area's schools or school district, noting graduation rates, academic performance, and parent and student reviews. Websites like can provide valuable insights and help you decide whether a public or private school is best for your family. Evaluate the availability, reputation and cost of both private and public schools in the area based on your preference.

While the school your child or children attend is important, extracurriculars should also be factored in. A neighborhood that offers various extracurricular opportunities can enrich your child's education beyond academics. Look for sports teams, arts programs and community organizations in the areas you are conducting your home search.

4. Commute and Transportation: Convenience as a Deciding Factor

They say time is money and how you spend it can affect your routine and home life. Whether you’re a remote worker with a busy social and family schedule or spend much of your time in the office, commuting times and transportation options can greatly impact your daily routine. Average commute times can indicate the convenience of a neighborhood. Shorter commutes can save time and lower stress levels, but this can also impact real estate price points depending on the region or city you are buying in. Research these times for your potential neighborhoods to ensure they align with your lifestyle.

Easy access to major highways, toll roads or public transportation can make commuting or traveling more convenient. In addition, consider the availability of bike lanes or walking paths for eco-friendly commuting options.

Whether it’s low crime rates or proximity to greenspaces, there are many reasons to choose a neighborhood. Prioritize your and your family’s needs and share these with your real estate agent. Choosing the right neighborhood and community is just as important as your minimum square footage requirements. We hope you find this list helpful in your search. For more homebuying and selling tips, visit our Home Buyer and Seller Corner.

Want more tips? Check out these articles:
How to Set a Budget for Your Home
The Indispensable Role and Benefits of a REALTOR®
Get Your Move On: A Guide to Finalizing Your Move Out
How to Stage Your Home for Sale