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Chase Manhattan Mortgage
Overview
Before You Buy
Choosing the Best Mortgage for You
The Truth About Fixer Uppers
Your Credit History
Home Inspections
Applying for Your Mortgage
Tax Benefits
Deciding How and When to Move
Finding a Good Neighborhood
To Refinance or Not to Refinance
home-equity-101
Mortgage Rate Reasoning
Employee Benefit Program
Mortgage Terms to Know


Finding a Good Neighborhood

When it comes to moving, where you move is just as important as the home you choose.
As they say, location is everything! Location refers to a large area, such as a state, city or county, but also your surroundings in close proximity. A neighborhood is probably what most people think of when someone nearby asks, “Where do you live?”

Not only that, but a neighborhood determines so much about the neighbors you will have, the community you will be a part of and the values and interests that you will share with others around you. You want your neighborhood to be a safe place for your family, an easy place to meet other families like your own, and probably close to quality schools and other businesses. The visual appearance of your neighborhood is probably important too. Most people want a pretty, clean place to live, rather than an older and more run down area.

So remember, you want to evaluate the neighborhoods you look at in many different ways. See at the big picture, but also the smaller details that may be important later. Look at the people. Find the parks and get oriented with the streets. Are the yards kept? Are there kids outside in the drive ways? Do people seem friendly? Are homes being built and renovated? All of these may be distinguishing features of one neighborhood versus other areas.

Decide what characteristics are crucial to your decision. Get feedback from your family. What does your spouse prefer? What do your kids care the most about? Since this will be your entire family’s home, you want everyone to share in the decision and be equally satisfied with the outcome.

Considerations may include the commuting time to your employer or your spouse’s employer, the quality and ranking of schools in the area, as well as population or demographic information about the schools, and public and private school options. You may also want to think about community institutions you may want involvement with. Is there a recreation center or gym? Is there a daycare center or an extracurricular center? Know if it is in the city or a suburb. If you have animals you may need a large yard or more land. If you are going to farm, you will need a more rural terrain, as well.

Sometimes an agent can help with neighborhood hunting. They will probably have a much greater knowledge and familiarity with the neighborhoods in the vicinity, and they can give you specific information that is accurate, rather than having to guess by driving through it or just visiting. Go to open houses, approach neighbors, stop in the schools or businesses.

The more people you talk with, the greater comfort you will have in knowing what the area has to offer and what it is really like. You may also want to visit websites or check out local newspapers. This will have more news and events that you may want to learn about or attend.

Choosing a neighborhood is a major part of choosing a new home. Choosing one wisely is not as easy as picking a house and moving right in. It does take a lot more effort to investigate and thoroughly survey the area, but think of how much it will pay off once you have moved into your new home.

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