When you are determined to live in a home that you own, you have to understand that there are several things that you cannot control about where you live. Looking at homes will generally encompass going through your list of wants and needs to see how many things each property is able to accommodate. It is not likely that you would knock on all of the neighbors' doors to see what they are like before making an offer. Even then, a single meeting is not going to give you much perspective on how they are as neighbors. So, the most reliable thing you can do is to look for neighborhoods that are consistently maintained.
Sidewalk Repair Programs
The first step toward buying and living in an area that looks good all year long is choosing a city or neighborhood that makes it easy for homeowners to maintain sidewalks through financial assistance. Programs that offer to pay half of any sidewalk repair bills will encourage immediate action. This kind of program will make it more likely to walk around in a neighborhood with completely smooth sidewalks.
Street Sign Care
Although street signs are designed with resilience in mind, things like vehicular collisions, natural disasters, and even heavy storms could lead to these signs getting damaged or knocked down. A broken stop sign or pedestrian crossing sign is not only going to make a neighborhood look poorly maintained, but it could potentially put drivers and pedestrians in danger due to not being able to read the signs. So, you should make sure your city has a program in place that keeps up with sign maintenance. It is even better when the city is willing to go as far as street sweeping or removing overhanging tree branches.
If the neighborhoods you are looking at have a lot of front porches, their appearance will have a significant impact on how the area looks as a whole. If they are not well-maintained, you may have a difficult time convincing someone that the neighborhood is extremely stable and highly desirable. Neighboring houses that do not look so great will bring the value of your own house down, so you should prioritize cities that take measures to keep the houses within their city limits from looking run-down. A porch inspection program is a perfect example because it demands action to porches that are not in safe condition.
These are not the only services that a city can offer that revolve around neighborhood upkeep. But they are a good start, and it can open you up to more research to improve your home buying experience.
Searching for a home a hundred miles away from where I was previously living was hard. There was no way for us to take a trip up to see every single house that we found online to see first-hand the condition that it was in and how big it truly was. I had to find a real estate agent that I could trust to help us find several houses to make a trip up to see in a single day. I created this blog after going through the buying process and making the move. It is my hope that if you are buying a new home far from your current one, that the tips here will help to make it an easy transaction for you.