Location and Lifestyle

When searching for a new home, it is important to look beyond square footage or top-notch appliances and into lifestyle preferences. While a home’s layout is typically its best-selling point, it is the surrounding community that can bring true content. The single homeowner may benefit from a bustling city-based neighborhood. A family may prefer to be surrounded by a variety of amenities such as a pool or tennis courts. For households that span generations, accessibility to diverse, age-specific activities may be essential.
The team at Hart & Olive doesn’t simply seek the perfect home. Instead, the search focuses on finding a home within a community that complements the lifestyle. Settling into an area that meets needs beyond a home’s four walls means asking the right questions:

  • What are your community priorities? By defining these priorities before the home search begins, potential properties can be narrowed down significantly. Safety, proximity to work or schools, and ease of commute are just a few factors to consider. A household full of sports enthusiasts may prefer to be close to local teams while nature lovers will likely want access to the area’s many greenways. Travel often? Neighborhoods nearest to major transportation may be the best match.
  • As the above priorities are pinpointed, the list of ideal neighborhoods will become more clear, making the pool of properties less overwhelming. Once favorable neighborhoods are identified, the research begins. Many on the hunt for a new home collect details on school ratings, accessibility to health care, and travel distance to grocery stores, restaurants, or parks. These details can be collected via the internet, local publications, and, of course, a seasoned realtor.
  • Visiting potential neighborhoods is a must-do. As the home search narrows, frequent each locale during high-traffic hours to gauge commutes to work, shopping, sports, etc. Take a walk along nearby streets and interact with the locals. Don’t be afraid to ask questions! What do residents love about living there? Anything they wish they’d known before buying? Take note of how the neighborhood is maintained as well. A well-kept street is a sign of happy residents, proud of the place they call home.
  • Community counts in more ways than one. A strong community offers security as residents look out for the well-being of their neighbors. Developments tend to offer opportunities for social engagement, such as picnics, parades, or cookouts. Many include gathering places for residents, perhaps a clubhouse, pool, or pavilion. A sense of belonging should be prioritized when hunting for a new home.  
  • For those beginning the home search, financials are often only considered about the purchase price. It is also important to collect details on property taxes, HOA fees, utilities, and any other expenses associated with the area. Make sure the entire cost of living, including participation in local amenities, is in alignment with budget requirements.
  • Love your lifestyle! If you can’t wait for the weekend to try out the newest culinary hotspots, choose a home surrounded by local restaurants. Music lovers should settle in an area with accessibility to multiple theatres or concert venues. If your packing list includes bicycles, kayaks, or golf clubs, pick a spot that offers several options to use them.
  • Don’t discount intuition. As the home search narrows, the decision can become more difficult. Pay attention to your comfort level, the overall vibe, and whether you can envision yourself living happily in a specific community. It may be that a neighborhood checks all the right boxes but still does not feel right. Trusting your intuition can be a great guide toward a neighborhood that will love to call home.
It is not uncommon, in the home buying process, to hear those famed words “location, location, location.” While location does matter, the combination of location and lifestyle is even more important. Creating a list of priorities before the home search is the perfect way to get pointed in the right direction.
Contact the Hart & Olive team to help define your specific lifestyle needs today!

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