I had a routine I used prior to purchasing all of my Indianapolis rental properties. And now that I’m a Real Estate Broker, I realize I’m giving that same advice to my clients who are looking at homes to buy for themselves and their families. Here’s what I recommend:
- If you’ve found a home that interests you, drive the area at different times of day — morning, mid-day, evening, weekends. That will tell you a lot about the neighborhood activity.
- If you get the chance, talk with a couple of neighbors. They’re a wealth of information.
- Check for crime stats in the area by stopping by the local police station, or going to http://www.trulia.com/crime.
- Check for what amenities are nearby: groceries, schools, parks, restaurants, other shopping, public transportation.
- Pay attention to how well kept the homes are on that street and nearby.
- And of course, look at what the home itself offers, in comparison to others. Is there value there? Are prices rising in the area? Whether you’re looking to rent or buy, it behooves you to be in an “up-and-coming” neighborhood as opposed to one that’s on the down side.
- And if you’re using a Realtor/Broker, have that person run some “comps” for the area, so you’ll know what other places of equal size/amenities are selling or renting for … make sure you’re getting some “bang for the buck!”
Happy hunting! 😉