When it comes to real estate, you’ve probably heard the phrase “location. Location, location!” Indeed, location is extremely important to any property. But what does “location” encompass? There are many elements including the neighbourhood, how close the home is to transit, schools or shopping centres, and what other homes in the area are like and valued at.
At its core, location can mean the difference between a two-bedroom apartment costing two million dollars in Hong Kong, and the same apartment costing $79,000 in Kazakhstan. Since location plays such a vital role in real estate, let’s delve into the term “good location” further.
What makes a “good location” in real estate?
There are several location-related factors that play a role in the price, appreciation and depreciation of a property. Now, not everyone can afford or find the home of their dreams that has all of these factors, but if you can find a place that strikes even a few of these boxes, and can be obtained for a mortgage you can afford, you’re on the right path:
How close you choose to live to the urban center of a city or town will affect the price of the property. If you’re in a booming city that is highly developed, you will obviously pay more than if you are in a subdivision on the outskirts of the town, or a smaller, more rural location. This is critical when you consider not only the price you pay, but if the property will increase or decrease in value over the years. For this reason, it’s wise to research any potential areas that you are considering moving to.
It’s not just how central the property is, but also which amenities are close by. From libraries to arenas to sports centers, remember to look past what a city or town has now, and consider what it has planned for the future. Schools, hospitals, public transit and other public infrastructure all add to the overall price of a property, but it also increases the chances of that property becoming more valuable over time.
You can have a beautiful home, but if the neighbourhood doesn’t suit your style, then it may not work out. A great neighbourhood should have a few key features: accessibility, appearance and amenities. The neighbourhood you choose should match your lifestyle. If you enjoy walking, jogging or cycling, there should be trails. If you play sports, there has to be parks. If you enjoy the nightlife, you should be close to a bustling downtown. Find a neighbourhood that nourishes your hobbies and likes.
You also have to consider where the lot is actually located. For example, if you have children or pets, you don’t want to live near busy roads or highways. If you want privacy, then you’ll prefer a ravine lot to one that backs onto a commercial or public space. From views to being close to a body of water, there are a lot of factors that will affect the price of a home.
You may find a property that is wonderful, but the house needs a lot of work (or vise versa). Generally, going with the nicer lot is the smarter investment. A home can always be fixed up, renovated or torn down and replaced. The lot is where property value truly lies and is an important consideration when looking for a real estate property that will increase in value over time.