1) Check Crime Stats and Sex Offenders
Be sure to check the crime stats and registered sex offenders list. There’s nothing worse than moving into a neighborhood to discover that there are less desirable areas nearby. When we built our first home, we didn’t do any exploring past 2 miles from the home site and regretted it later when the crime increased in our area. We knew right then that when we decided to start a family we would need to move. Crime statistics, the sex offender registry and more can be found in the Buyer Advisory.
2) Check Upcoming Foreclosures
Most agents don’t know to do this! If there are one or two...that’s typical and shouldn’t have too much impact. If it’s 10 or 20 then that could be something to consider when thinking about your future home value.
3) Talk With Other Moms!
Talk with other Moms or people that are familiar with the area. Try to join the Facebook neighborhood groups and ask questions about things to do in the immediate area. You'll want to ask about schools, parks, restaurants, etc. MOMnationAZ is a great place to start. What is better than a network of over 4,500 Moms who live all over the Valley? We all know Moms crave adult conversation away from their kids so start asking away!
Think about if you want a neighborhood that is amenity rich like Eastmark, a family favorite, or if you’d like a no frills, no HOA neighborhood where you’re free to park work vehicles and RV’s and paint your home whatever color you please.
4) Do a Drive By
Drive by day and night, weekend and weekdays. Go hang out at the park and observe the area. It may be quiet all week long, but party central on the weekends, and not the kind of party you want to go to. Also, try talking with neighbors while visiting. This will be a great indicator to get a feel for the neighborhood and help you decide if you want to live there.
Remember, you have 10 days after making an offer on a home to do your due diligence and solidify your decision. Should you decide you want to back out of a home purchase in those 10 days, you will not be out any money.
5) Consider Commute Time
During the honeymoon phase of a new house, the 45 minute drive to work might not bother you, but it eventually will once the "newness wears off". Dobson Ranch is a great neighborhood to consider if you’re looking for a neighborhood with great amenities, but also a quick commute to Phoenix.
Remember, your Realtor cannot steer you to or away from a certain area as it is against the Code of Ethics. You can, however, give them a wants/needs list of what you’re looking for in an area and they can go to work to help you find what you’re looking for based on experience and area knowledge.
As always, don’t hesitate to reach out with ANY Real Estate questions!
Happy House Hunting!
Jen Duncan a.k.a. JD!
480-707-7554 (Text Friendly)