Top 9 Factors to Consider When Choosing Your Ideal Waterloo Region Neighbourhood
When you are in the market to buy a new Waterloo Region home it helps to remember one of the golden rules of real estate: You’re not just buying a home — you are also buying into and becoming a part of a neighbourhood
As anyone who’s moved a few times knows, not all neighbourhoods are created equal. There is no such thing as the perfect one, because not all areas are going to be truly a perfect fit for everyone and their unique needs.
This might be especially true in the Waterloo Region. Within our region you can find areas that offer the kind of hip urban living that you might expect in Toronto, great suburban family neighbourhoods, pastoral neighbourhoods that are charmingly old-fashioned and almost everything in between. It's no lie to say that the Waterloo Region has a neighbourhood for everyone.
Although a cookie-cutter completely ideal neighborhood isn’t a reality, there are components common to ALL great neighborhoods. As you evaluate the best aspects of a prospective Waterloo Region neighborhood, you’ll want to match them to your needs at this point in your life, but with an eye to the future as well. Here are some of the factors you should keep in mind as you begin your search for that right for you spot.
A truly great (for you) neighborhood is one in sync with your current lifestyle. Homebuyers tend to gravitate to areas with similar demographics. Just as a fantastic suburban neighbourhood may not be right for a young single professional, a family with three small children would likely be miserable living in a small condo in a hip downtown area.
Pride in Ownership
All great neighborhoods have this in common. Pride in ownership is obvious when the residents maintain their homes and care about their local area. Neighbours participate to connect and create local groups that bring the residents together for the betterment of the area.
Lower Crime Rates
Low crime rates give an area a sense of ease and calm. As safety and security are everyone’s concern, crime statistics are a quick way to tell if a neighborhood is improving or not. You can usually spot a transitional and improving neighborhood by the improvement or decline in its crime rates.
For homeowners with children, good schools often top their list of what makes a great neighbourhood.
But, not only are great schools important for families with children, they also make the surrounding neighborhoods more valuable and more sought after, keeping property values strong. So even if you are yet to add kids to your family, yours have long left home, or you only share your space with furkids (who usually don't go to school) the quality of the local school districts will often affect the value of your home.
The Potential For Outdoor Adventures
Being close to the outdoor adventures you love can sweeten the appeal of an area. This is something that has really taken on extra significance post pandemic. Lots of people say that having so many parks and green space across the Waterloo Region that they were allowed to escape to was a huge help during lockdowns, especially for their mental and physical health.
Being close (or within a reasonable drive) to places to jog, run or bike is desirable for many people from all walks of life and if you have kids and/or fur kids, then playgrounds and dog parks are going to be important too and will likely make up part of what you consider to be a great neighbourhood.
Access to Medical Care
This is important for all residents, but especially for seniors and retirees looking to find that perfect place to retire and for families with young children. Being close enough to get to a hospital or doctor’s office quickly is key for many people in various stages of their lives.
Access to Public Transport
Easy access to public transportation is a fantastic plus for a residential area and an amenity for almost any lifestyle. From a commuting millennial to a retiree who wants to keep the car at home, public transit is a solid upgrade to any neighbourhood.
Restaurants and Entertainment
If you want to be part of the hustle and bustle (and don’t want to cook dinner every night), having great restaurants, shopping, and markets in proximity is a must! Is there a nearby town center or downtown with theaters, bars, and nightlife? This could be the one thing that makes your neighbourhood come alive.
This is a priority for anyone who is young and single, but everyone appreciates a neighbourhood where the hot spots are within walking distance, or a short Uber ride away.
Being able to leave the car keys at home and hit the pavement to walk to markets, shopping, restaurants, parks, and all the other amenities your neighborhood has to offer can alleviate a lot of road rage … and make you fall even more in love with your new locale!
How Your Realtor Can Help You Find the Right Waterloo Region Neighbourhood
Lots of people will tell you to begin your research into the various Waterloo Region residential neighbourhoods online. That's decent advice, but a local real estate agent can give you a lot more helpful information that Google can't.
Local real estate agents like Team Pinto usually live in the area they serve (we do) and as almost all their time is spent in the area in various different professional and personal activities, we can give yo unique perspectives that a search engine never could.
The examples of this are too numerous to list here, but we know just what the various neighbourhoods are like during different seasons and even at different times of day. We know where the to go to indulge your outdoor passions, the best places to walk your dog, the best place to get a pizza, which schools really are the best and much, much more.
Planning to begin a search for a new Waterloo Region home? Let Team Pinto use their huge local real estate experience and expertise to help you. Contact the award-winning Team Pinto here, or book a free Zoom consultation to discuss your unique Waterloo Region real estate needs here