When couples decide to purchase a new home, there are some common considerations that will factor in as they make this important decision. At the top of this investment process is determining what home value they can afford and finding a neighborhood condusive to their lifestyle.
When a couple already has children or expect to have them within a short period of time, most financial experts advise couples to factor in their kids into that buying decision to help ensure that the new home will be the right fit throughout the children's formative growing years.
How Parents Should Evaluate Home Value Price Versus Neighborhood
Real estate can be a worthwhile and successful investment if one knows how to evaluate the overall value of a home when it is purchased and what the property value will be at some point in the future. Ideally, prospective home buyers should look for properties that are priced low in areas that could become popular in the years to come.
Parents should not base the entire decision on the cost of a home alone. It is smart to factor in other elements that will become even more important as the kids grow and change through the decades. Parents should weigh both property price with must-have neighborhood features like low crime rate, friendly neighborhood vibe, kid friendly attractions and of course good schools nearby.
What Do Kid-Friendly Neighborhoods Look Like?
Families often have their own view on what an ideal kid-friendly neighborhood should look like and offer. Someone who has grown up in urban areas may put access to nearby cultural attractions, great schools and safety measures high on their must-have neighborhood checklist.
Other people who like the wide open spaces and close community connections that many rural areas have will obviously have a different looking must-have list. There is no right or wrong here, rather parents should factor in their preferred neighborhood features that fit their unique parenting plan.
The Price of a Home Needs to Fit Each Family's Budget Limitations
Purchasing real estate can cost a lot of money up front or in loan obligations that could limit spending for decades into the future. When families cut their budget limits too close when determining their maximum housing budget, it could backfire drastically should an unexpected emergency arise later down-the-road.
Financial experts caution that household living expenses should not exceed one-third of their income to allow a cushion should someone lose a job, develop an illness or if a couple gets a divorce.
Investigate a Neighborhood As Seen Through a Child's Eyes
Parents might think they are getting a great bargain price on a home that is located in a neighborhood that boasts mostly retirees and not many kids around. This could be an issue as the kids get older and desire more peer friendships and fun places to play.
Some kid friendly neighborhood features include:
- Other Kids Nearby
- Good Schools That Feel Safe & Welcoming
- Safe Areas with Sidewalks & Green Lawns
- Nearby Parks, Beaches & Other Natural Spots
- Local Extra-Curricular Classes - Dance or Yoga Studios, Martial Arts Classes, Skateboarding Park or Bicycle Paths
- Nearby Theater, Ice-Cream Stand or Access to Tennis or Basketball Courts
Consider How Far Away Doctors & Hospitals Are from a Home
There are other factors to consider such as a nearby hospital, doctor's office and grocery stores within a comfortable distance. Public transportation may factor in too in some areas.