Finding the Right Fit

by Jill Santandrea, Broker Manager, EXIT Homestead Realty Professionals

When you buy a house, you aren’t just buying a house. In a way, you’re buying a neighborhood. After all, you’ll likely choose a home partly because it’s close to work, the schools are great or it’s walking distance to restaurants and stores. Or maybe you love that it’s nowhere near retail establishments. One could argue that picking the right neighborhood is more important than picking the right house. The last thing you want is to buy property in a place everyone is trying to leave.

Here are important factors to consider:

• Amenities: Where is the nearest grocery store and gas station? The nearest gym? The nearest mall? Can you make a quick run to the bank or grocery store, or will every day be a headache behind the wheel due to traffic congestion or construction? Having things close by or not, depending on your preference, are definitely things you should know. Ask your realtor these important questions before buying a home in an unfamiliar neighborhood.

• Schools: If you are planning to have children, or already have children, schools are a factor when considering a neighborhood. Do they have small class sizes? What are their test scores like? What’s the graduation rate? All questions to ask your realtor.

• Community: Do you want to live somewhere that neighbors get along and interact with one another? Are there events so you can meet new people? Both are factors to think about if you are interested in living in a close-knit community.

• Commute Time: If you don’t have the luxury of working from home, your daily commute is an important factor to consider. How far away are you willing to drive each morning and evening? Don’t forget about traffic and other factors, too.

• Affordability: When considering a neighborhood, one of the first things to think about is whether or not you can afford to live in that particular neighborhood. What are the sales taxes and property taxes like? What is the average income in the neighborhood? Sure, you want a cheap house, but you also want to be able to afford the cost of living in the neighborhood.

• City Versus Rural: There is a big difference between a city and a rural community. Do you want to be surrounded by land or buildings? Cities have more amenities, but rural community homes generally have more space for less money per square foot.

• Aesthetics: An attractive neighborhood indicates the residents care about it.

• Safe Environment: What is the crime rate in the neighborhood? Is there a neighborhood watch?

Until next week….

Jill Santandrea, Broker Manager, EXIT Homestead Realty Professionals LLC, 1070 E Chestnut Ave, Vineland, NJ 08360; 856-692-EXIT; Cell: 856-362-0967; Direct: 888-856-5455;; E-mail:; Text JillS to 85377 for my mobile business card. Listen to Jill on 99.9FM SNJ Radio Today. Source: 2019 Buffini & Company