Figuring out what town you would like to live in seems like an impossible task for many homebuyers. To tackle this issue we asked Real Estate Around Philly’s in house buying and selling expert Jen Colahan for some advice.
Neighborhood Starting Points
According to Colahan there are many things that buyers can start doing on their own to get acquainted with local areas. “I suggest that they drive around and attend open houses, go shopping at the local stores … really go and experience the area for themselves,” she said. “Also, if commute is a concern, do the drive and see if you can deal with the commute day in and day out.”
Colahan recommends open house tours as a great starting point.
“This is a great way to get a feel for an area and also helps real estate buyers to see what they must have in a home,” she said. “It also helps them decide what they can do without by actually walking through and experiencing the different layouts and styles.”
Explore the School Districts
In the greater Philadelphia area, for some buyers schools are a big concern.
“I would say that you need to decide how important the school districts are to you and your family,” Colahan said. “Some buyers consider looking into local Charter Schools or Private Schools and see how they would play into the financial aspects of your move to that area.”
Examine The Curb Appeal
To get a feeling of whether certain sections of neighborhoods are on their way up or down, take note of how well properties are kept.
“I would say that in most cases with proper research you can look into local trends and keep an eye on any changes in value,” she said. “You can also pay attention to the way homes are kept and whether there seems to be improvement going on or if the neighbors are let things go.”
Keep an Eye on Property Taxes
As you are looking Colahan suggests keeping note of the property taxes in certain areas.
“Often the features that buyers are searching for the most also have an effect on property taxes,” she said. “These include location, community and school districts, size of property and its assessment.”
More Home Searching Advice
Colahan recommends that buyers start going to the areas that they are considering and really experience them.
“You also need to decide on your comfortable price range,” she said. “A price range can often narrow down where you will end up. Once you arrive at your price range you can then start to see what you can get for your money in the certain areas you are considering. Then that can help you decide what areas and types of homes will work best for you.”
“There are a number of different websites that buyers can go to in order to find out more about the areas they are considering,” Colahan said.
Real Estate Around Philly recommends the following resources:
Are you thinking about putting your home on the market or just interested in talking to a real estate professional for some advice? Achieve your real estate goals with agent Jen Colahan. Are you unsure if you will qualify as a buyer and need to talk to a seasoned real estate veteran who won’t pressure you into making a move before you are ready? Fill out THIS FORM (CLICK HERE) and Jen will be in touch with you shortly. Remember, Jen Colahan does not just serve the city of Philadelphia. If you take a look at Featured Areas tab of the site navigation you will see some of the many areas where Jen helps clients buy and sell including but not limited to areas of Philadelphia, Montgomery, Bucks and Delaware Counties.