How to Decide Where to Live
Have you reached a point in your life where you’re ready to buy a property but you’re not sure where? Buying a home is a huge life decision that can’t be taken lightly, which is why it’s useful to take a look at factors that are important to you before you start looking at homes. Within this blog, we aim to provide you with key factors to consider when you’re trying to determine where to live.
Is this a solo adventure?
If you are buying a home for yourself, you can have your own list of requirements without being influenced by others. However, if you are moving in with a partner, friend, or other family members, it is important to work collaboratively on your combined goals for a property. This is why we recommend talking through each of the points below and writing down your ‘must-haves’ and ‘would like to have’. Prioritising your wants can make the process easier, as you may have to compromise to find a place that everyone is happy with.
Before getting your heart set on a location, it is important to determine if the homes within an area fit within your budget. This means before your hunt you should see how much you can afford to borrow if you need a mortgage.
One of the core decisions you could tackle first is whether you’re interested in being close to the hustle and bustle of city life or living in the peacefulness of the countryside. You may even want a mix of the two, so look out for convenient transport links.
For people with an interest in rural areas, you might want to consider where the closest supermarkets and shopping centres are. For those who want to escape to the big city, if you have pets, you should consider whether the area is suitable for their needs too e.g. if there are good walking routes or nearby parks for dogs.
In terms of physical location in the UK, consider how close you want to be to friends and family and how far afield you’re happy to move.
Moving onto transport – are you going to be driving to work? You may want to assess the route and look into how long the journey takes during rush hour. Alternatively, if you use public transport, you might want to see where the closest train or bus station is. If there are bike lanes, you may want to consider taking a greener route to work.
Support your hobbies
People will have different needs from a location depending on interests. For film buffs, is there a cinema nearby? For sports enthusiasts, is there a local sports team for you to join or a nearby golf course? For craft lovers, are there any local craft sessions? For gym goers, are there suitable gym options close by?
As you can see, many different interests could thrive in the right location but suffer if you choose the wrong one. You’ll want to consider what is most important to you when you start looking at locations.
Things to do in the area
Aside from hobbies, what is in the nearby area to entertain you? For families with children, having fun days out within close proximity to your home is useful, such as soft play centres, farms, or bowling. For people who enjoy an evening out, you might value having positively-reviewed restaurants and bars nearby, as well as date night spots like crazy golf.
To help you out, research what there is to do in the area to find pages such as our Top Things to Do in Staffordshire blog.
If you have children living with you or are expecting a child in the future, schools should play a role in your move. If you are making a move which means your child has to change schools, you’ll want to see how close these are and if there is space for them to join. For those expecting to want children, will the property be the right size if a new member of the family joins?
If you are moving later in life, you may have different priorities than someone in their 20s for example. Read our Over 55s Housing Considerations blog to find out more about further factors to consider.
Before making a big move, if you can, spend some time in the area and get a feel for living there. You may find by being there that you feel unsafe or something puts you off that you wouldn’t have known by only looking online. If you’re feeling sociable, you could even have a chat with residents in the area and find out whether they enjoy living there!
There are some checks you can do online, such as determining crime rates. You could look particularly at violent crime or drug-related offences.
Moving home advice from County Town Homes
Ultimately, choosing the right area for you comes down to which location ticks the most boxes. It may take time to find the right location, but it is worth carefully considering all of the factors we’ve covered in this blog to narrow down your search.
If you are making a house move, feel free to explore our other blogs where you’ll find help and advice about all areas of the home-buying journey, including useful guides and checklists. Interested in a new build home in the Shropshire or Staffordshire regions? Check out our beautiful modern developments from County Town Homes.