Before you buy a home and make what’s likely to be one of the biggest investments of your life, you owe it to yourself to get good information on your new neighborhood. Getting a deal on the home of your dreams can quickly turn sour if the neighborhood doesn’t meet your expectations. Here’s how to research a neighborhood before you buy a home.
Look into the Crime Rates
In addition to the U.S. Census Bureau’s city profiles that list crime statistics, you can try sites like CrimeReports.com, which offers local maps where you can access crime data in near-real time (the site has partnerships with more than 1,000 law enforcement agencies). You might also visit the local police department to ask about crime statistics and reports or sex offender registries and to find out what neighborhood watches or alerts are in operation. You can also try services like Family Watchdog for alerts about sex offenders in the neighborhood.
Walk the Neighborhood
Visit the neighborhood at various times of day, and on different days. The nature of a neighborhood changes from day to night, and from weekday to weekend. Make sure the activity and noise levels are to your liking. If you see residents out doing yardwork or walking their …read more