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Ask the Expert: HowDo We Pick the Perfect Neighborhood for Our Family

When clients first come to us and tell us they want to move, we always advise them to make a list of wants and needs from their dream home (You can learn more about that in our video series here). And in addition to their desires for an actual home, we always encourage them to consider the type of neighborhood they want to live in. After doing this job for many years, we have learned that in real estate the neighborhood where your home sits is often just as important as your home itself.

So, for today’s Ask the Expert, we wanted to share some of our best learned tricks about finding a neighborhood that meets your family’s needs.

Tip #1: Research the details of the Homeowners Association

A lot of neighborhoods in Byron Center have a Homeowners Association. This means that there is a group of people who have put together some basic codes and standards of maintenance for the neighborhood. For example, you may not be able to park a boat in your driveway, or your mailbox must be positioned at a certain point in your driveway. Not all Homeowners Associations are the same and so, the rules and regulations from neighborhood to neighborhood may vary. Some Homeowners Associations require the people in their neighborhoods to pay an annual fee.

Like all things, there are pros and cons to having your house in a neighborhood with a Homeowners Association. So, make sure that you research the associations in the neighborhoods you are considering. Are their rules deal breakers? Or do you appreciate the standards the association sets into place.

If you are uncertain about Homeowner’s Associations be sure that you voice this concern with us early in the process. This way we can help you find a home that best meets your lifestyle.

Tip #2: Check out the school you child would attend

If your family has school age children, you will definitely want to check out the schools in your area. Ask your realtor which school your child would attend in each neighborhood. If you prefer one school over another and busing is a necessity, then just let us know. We can help you find a home that would allow your child to attend the school of your choice.

If you are new to the Byron Center area and would like to tour the schools in the area, you can reach out to that particular school and schedule a tour. We are very proud of the schools in our area and think you’ll fit right in! You can learn more about Byron Center’s Public Schools here.

Tip #3: Ask your realtor about Byron Center taxes

Before you buy a home, it is important that you understand what taxes you will be responsible for paying. As you search for your home, be sure to ask your realtor what taxes would look like in each neighborhood.

Tip #4: Drive through the neighborhood at night

Neighborhoods often look and sound different at varying parts of the day. For instance, there may be heavier, louder traffic in the morning than there is the afternoon. Or there might be a lot of kids running and playing outside at night. Because of these differences, we always recommend that if you are interested in a particular neighborhood, then you should drive through at various times of the day. This will allow you to get a better feel of the neighborhood and the people who are living there.

Tip #5: Consider your family’s lifestyle + spend some time exploring

If you are new to the Byron Center area, you will probably want to do a little exploring. Before you decided on “the neighborhood” you want to live in, spend some time visiting churches and community centers in the area. If you have young children who like to go to the park, be sure that you visit the parks in the area. Head out to the Farmers Market and talk to people in the area. Consider how close you would like to be to the grocery store or the library. THEN, once you have explored all of these activities and places, look at neighborhoods that surround them. By working backward you can find a house that’s close to all of your favorite things.

Thanks for reading this month’s Ask the Expert! We hope that you were able to get some quality tips and tricks for finding the neighborhood of your dreams. If you have a question you want answered, be sure to send us an email today.

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