We’ve all heard the old adage “location, location, location”. But what does that really mean when you’re looking to buy a home? Generally the phrase means “The 3 most important things in determining the value of Real Estate is location, location, location.” There is debate on when and who coined the popular term first, and you can read an interesting article on the subject in the New York Times written by William Safire.
For our discussion today though, we are going to look a little deeper than just value.
LOCATION – PHYSICAL
The type of lifestyle you and your family enjoy is a key component on where to buy a home. Do you like a more Urban setting where shops, restaurants and amenities are close by? Maybe even within walking distance? Or would your family prefer a more tranquil Rural setting with a little more privacy? The “stage” your family is in plays a large part in this decision. Younger couples, and singles just starting out tend to want a more urban/city location. Couples that are ready to start a family might want a more suburban/neighborhood kind of feel to raise their children. Before finalizing your decision on location, it’s a very good idea to take a look around the areas in the daytime and at night. This will give the buyer a more comprehensive idea of the neighborhoods they are considering.
LOCATION – PERSONAL
Where are your family and friends located? Is it important for you to be close to grandma? Or are you looking for that happy balance between close enough to visit, but not right next door.
LOCATION – WORK
Commuting to your work place is another major factor, especially in our area! Northern Virginia is a growing, busy place to live. Some people are more tolerant of a longer commute than others. Do you want to be within walking distance of public transportation? We have an extensive public transportation system that includes bus services, metro, VRE, carpools, commuter buses, and more. These options can help with commuting to work. Most people still like to drive themselves to work, so knowing how long your commute will be is useful information when deciding on the location of where to buy a home.
LOCATION – SCHOOL DISTRICT
Families with school age children will want to consider school districts. Although our area has very strong school systems, the curriculum, teaching methods, and educational options available to the students can vary greatly. Buyers should definitely factor in the educational needs of their children and compare the different school options before deciding on where to buy.
A little prior planning and research can help a buyer make the process of finding a home a lot easier if you narrow down your location early on. Then you can really focus in on your desired neighborhoods and find the right home for you!
Download our List of Useful Websites to use for research on schools, amenities, transportation, safety, etc. Please keep in mind that although our list doesn’t encompass every site out there, it’s a great place to start!