Check for Proposed Infrastructure Changes Before You Buy

Posted on: December 8, 2013

Buying a home is about more than putting a roof over your head; it’s an investment for the future. To that end, you want a home that will appreciate in value, and one way of ensuring that is buying in a neighborhood that is growing or improving. It may not be obvious whether a neighborhood is improving or declining, but there are a few ways to check the status of your new area before you buy: check for proposed infrastructure changes or special tax assessments. These items can yield clues about the future of your new neighborhood, as well as the cost and value of your home.

Special Tax Assessments: More Than Just Money

Depending on where you buy, property taxes can consume a large portion of your budget. Predicting future property taxes relies on a many factors, but one thing that can be difficult to evaluate or anticipate is a special assessment. When you’re considering buying a new home, check with the local assessor’s office to see if any special assessments are planned. These assessments can tell you about more than just your property taxes, though. Special assessments for things like a new park or improvements to the local school can help raise your property value and make your property more attractive to parents. Read between the lines to determine if an assessment is going to add cash value or resale value to your home.

Look for Planned Infrastructure Changes

Local infrastructure says a lot about a neighborhood. When you’ve found your dream home, check with the local planning board and city hall to see what sort of infrastructure changes are planned for your new neighborhood. Some infrastructure changes can translate to an increase in value for you, while others may signal your home could become less desirable. For example, if the two-lane road in front of your dream home is about to widen to a four-lane road, you’ll have not only construction to deal with, but increased traffic. A home could be less desirable as a result. When you’re ready to buy, check with the local planning board to see what infrastructure changes are planned, and how they might affect your home.


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