What are you looking for in a neighborhood?
When it comes to picking out your next home one of the most important if not the most important aspects of your new home will be the neighborhood. Moving into your new home should be a time of excitement and joy. The last thing that you need is to move in and find yourself surrounded by crime, loud neighbors, or in a terrible school district for your kids. So before you move or even before you start looking at homes in the Florida area, there are a few things that you should take into consideration.
First, you need to make a list of all of the things that are needed for you and your family. There are three different lists that you need to make. One that lists everything that is necessary for your family, everything that would be considered a luxury, and finally everything that is an absolute don’t for your new home.
Making your Florida Neighborhood List
Where is it Located?
First when looking into a new home is location, location, location! Ask yourself, where do you want to live? Are you wanting something close to a major city such as Miami, Orlando, or Tampa? City life is very different than living life in a suburb. Maybe you are looking for something that is close enough to drive to the city but still a part of a suburb.
Are you looking for something that is close to the coast? Or are you looking for something more inland? Coastal living is exciting and fun, however, living too close to the coast can be costly and the weather can be a big problem during hurricane season.
A huge aspect of living in Florida are the theme parks. If you have kids or if you are still a kid at heart, how far away do you want to live from Disney World, Universal Orlando, or SeaWorld theme parks?
Keep in mind the location that you want to live in and how that affects your family and your life goals.
Depending on the neighborhood that you move to you might want to look at areas with a homeowners association. Homeowner associations are helpful for a number of reasons. Basically a Homeowners Association is a board in which directors are voted in by the homeowners of the neighborhood. The board’s job is to keep an eye on the neighborhood.
They are meant to help enforce rules that have been voted in by homeowners as well as manage any maintenance or upkeep of homes in the neighborhood. That means managing and maintaining parks in the neighborhood as well as private neighborhood clubs, pools, and more.
The board will also enforce things such as upkeep of the homeowners property. This can include a number of things such as mowing grass, trimming shrubs, what type of fencing you can use, and even dictate regulations for personal pools and more.
A Homeowners Association can be very helpful to maintain not just the neighborhood but to also help maintain the market value of the neighborhood as a whole.
Do you Have or Want Children?
Are looking for a new home for your growing family? Or have you considered having children in the future? Making sure to plan for your young ones is really important. Take into consideration the neighborhood that you are looking to move to.
What type of people live there? Are there more families with children or are the people in the neighborhood older retired families? Are there parks and youth centers in the area for your children to enjoy? What is the school district like and how do they rank amongst other schools in Florida?
Making sure that your home is in an area that is productive and fun for your kids can help them expand their imagination, develop skills, and grow to their full potential. Putting your children’s needs high up on your list can dramatically change their lives for the better.
What Kind of Commute to Work?
Commuting to work is an everyday part of life. That is why your commute to work is one of the most important aspects of where you live. A lot of people work from home so driving to work is not a concern. However, for those of us who do drive, bike, or take the bus to work need to consider this when picking a new home.
If you and your spouse have different jobs in different areas, finding a good neighborhood in Florida that is roughly similar distances away will be important. When looking at a home that is only a 10 minute drive to work for your partner but is a 45 minute drive to work for you can be frustrating and can feel unfair.
What Can You Afford?
Looking into your finances is a given when purchasing a new home. Making sure that you can comfortably afford one of the homes in the neighborhood of your choice is just as important if not more so than anything else on your list.
Have you ever heard of the term house poor? This term simply refers to someone who purchases a house that is out of their financial means. When purchasing a home you want to be able to still go out and do things with the family. Being able to go out to eat at a restaurant, go to the zoo, or even go on vacation are all things that you won’t be able to do if you purchase a home that’s above your financial means.