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5 Things to Look for in a Neighborhood, No Matter Where You Move

In Buying a Home, Home Values, Houston Energy Corridor, Houston Parks, Houston Real Estate Agent, Local Business, Local Events, Real Estate Investment, Restaurants & Shops, Restaurants & Shops, Schools, Selling your home on November 29, 2016 at 7:28 pm

Since relocating is such a major undertaking, it’s vital to thoroughly research your options. This is especially essential regarding an overseas move. Here are five things to assess in a prospective neighborhood to ensure you’ll feel at home, no matter whether your new home is here or abroad.

1. Transportation

One consideration is how you’ll navigate your new surroundings. Find out whether you’ll have access to public transportation or need a car. If you can use public transit, what are the service hours and stops? If you require airport proximity, determine how you’ll get there. Do you currently have a job lined up? If so, calculate the distance of the commute from the neighborhood in question. Will the trip be a cakewalk, or grueling? According to World Knowing, the top-ranked countries with the best transportation systems in the world are Hong Kong, Singapore, the UAE, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Japan, Germany, France, Spain, and the UK.

Even if a REALTOR® lists the distance from a house to a public station, the calculation doesn’t always include door-to-door travel time. You may be able to use Google Maps to determine this. If not, the website of a city’s public transit system may provide a clue.

2. Businesses

Before visiting a neighborhood, think about businesses you’ll be frequenting, such as a bank, grocery store, pharmacy and retail shops. Make sure they’re a feasible distance from your prospective home. Also, ensure their customer service is reputable and prices are reasonable. For example, if there’s a grocer nearby, does it stock staples, or only expensive gourmet goods? Where can you find fresh produce?

You may be able to minimize leg work by reading online business reviews. Yelp is expanding internationally, with websites emerging in Europe and Asia. Reviews are also conveniently available via iPhone and Android apps. Local Yelp announces business openings and events in major cities.

3. Schools

If you have children, REALTORS® will tell you that another must-have is access to quality education. Many overseas schools provide bus services, but trip length must be tolerable for kids. In towns where public schools are sub-par, you may want to enroll your children in private school. If so, consider the extra expense of entrance fees, tuition, uniforms and transportation.

Did you know there’s a correlation between the presence of schools and crime? A 2011 study by the University of New Mexico found that elementary schools have a protective effect against property crimes. Middle schools, however, promote drug felonies, and high schools foster both property and narcotics crime. So, regarding school proximity, aim to be close enough for a short trip, though not a hop, skip and jump away.

Concerning school reputation, attend a PTA meeting at a given school. By speaking with other parents, you’ll get firsthand information on the school’s quality. A good school district increases a home’s value, should you wish to sell in the future.

4. Amenities

Is culture important to you? If you’re an avid fan of art, theater and music, this is a consideration. Do you like to frequent restaurants, pubs, or dance clubs? If these are high on your wish list, how close are they to the home you’re debating? If you must travel to a distant town, factor in transit costs.

Also, research proximity to free entertainment, such as parks, museums and libraries. If you’re a sports enthusiast, assess the distance to athletic arenas.

There’s one caveat regarding crime: Steer clear of a neighborhood where bars are prevalent. The study mentioned above concerning schools and crime found that ready access to alcohol promotes violence and vandalism.

5. Economy

Neighborhood decline has telltale signs. Drive through the streets of a potential town, and look for financial clues. Examples of red flags are unkempt parks, littered streets and a prevalence of “For Sale” signs. Are people moving out of the area? Are businesses closing up shop?

Query librarians about the town and whether it’s fiscally sound. Ask if the library has cut down its hours, another clue to a suffering economy. Look for indications that people care about their property and each other. Do houses and landscapes look maintained? Are neighbors interacting? If any seem friendly, ask about their experience of living there.

A Smart Move

Now you’ll be a savvy traveler while exploring a new town. To ensure a successful move, evaluate the local:

  • Transportation
  • Businesses
  • Schools
  • Healthcare system
  • Amenities
  • Economy

Like a good journalist, get detailed information from reliable sources. Invite conversation, and record your observations. Then, make your smart move. You’ll be able to settle down for as long as needed in a wonderful neighborhood, whether that be in the United States or abroad.

This post was originally published on RISMedia’s blog, Housecall. Check the blog daily for top real estate tips and trends. RISMedia Tracking Snippet *** Do Not Remove *** End RISMedia Tracking Snippet

Reprinted with permission from RISMedia. ©2016. All rights reserved.

Do you have real estate questions?   Contact Connie Vallone at (713) 249-4177 or connie@knowsrealestate.com or visit www.houstonenergycorridorhomes.com  or  www.vallonehomes.com.

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Echo Energy Corridor of Houston Orchestra February 2015 Concert

In Energy corridor music groups, Houston Energy Corridor, Local Business, Local Events, Orchestra, Parks & Recreation on January 22, 2015 at 4:24 pm

Heart and Soul:
An intimate performance by ECHO patio troubadours

Heart & Soul Echo Orchestra The Energy Corridor of Houston Orchestra

Saturday, February 14, 2015
Time: 11:00am
Location: Green Planet Sanctuary
13424 – B Briar Forest Dr., Houston, TX 77077
10:00am – Coffee and Pastries Social

Purchase Tickets
echologowww.houstonenergycorridorhomes. com

NEW LISTING! 14423 Tivoli Drive, Houston, TX 77077 – MLS# 3774230

In Buying a Home, Employers Houston Energy Corridor, Home Values, Houston Energy Corridor, Houston Real Estate Agent, Schools, Terry Hershey Park on December 9, 2014 at 9:22 pm

NEW LISTING! 14423 Tivoli Drive, Houston, TX 77077 – MLS# 3774230

Beautiful home in gated community in hearf of Houston's Energy Corridor

Beautiful home in gated community heart of Houston’s Energy Corridor

Stunning lakefront home with pool and hot tub in gated Terraces on Memorial. Courtyard leads to impressive entry that flows to spacious dining area and family rooms that opens to gourmet island kitchen with wall of windows and serene lake views. Guest suite downstairs with full bathroom plus study. Master retreat with lake views plus three more bedrooms, media room, study nook, walk in attic storage upstairs. 3 car garage. Extensive upgrades too many to list here please see online brochure.

HAR http://search.har.com/engine/14423-Tivoli-Drive-Houston-TX-77077_HAR3774230.htm

If you are interested in buying or selling real estate in West Houston, please contact Connie Vallone with First Market Realty at 713 249 4177  or visit www.houstonenergycorridorhomes.com  or www.vallonehomes.com .

BRIARHILLS MARKET FESTIVAL SATURDAY 18TH OCTOBER, 2014 10am to 4pm

In Energy corridor music groups, Fall Festivals in Houston, Houston Energy Corridor, Houston Parks, Local Business, Local Events, Local events, Parks & Recreation, Parks in West Houston, Terry Hershey Park, West Houston on September 13, 2014 at 5:00 pm
Briarhills Market Festival in Houston's Energy Corridor

Briarhills Market Festival in Houston’s Energy Corridor

BriarHills  inaugural community event invites the Energy Corridor residents to come and join the local ambiance at our own Briarhills Park.
The festival features a variety of market stalls offering craft, flea and local business and live music including EHCO Orchestra quartet, children’s moonwalk, face painting and more. Bring your picnic blanket to enjoy your choice of food vendors.
‘Meet and Mingle’ and don’t forget if you are a local ride your bike (less pollution and traffic congestion) Bike Barn will be on board for cyclist support.

 

HoustonEnergyCorridorHomes

NEW LISTING! 14311 Briarhills Parkway, Houston, TX 77077 – MLS# 55390682

In Buying a Home, Employers Houston Energy Corridor, Home Values, Houston Energy Corridor, Houston Real Estate Agent, Schools, Terry Hershey Park on July 15, 2014 at 7:23 pm

NEW LISTING! 14311 Briarhills Parkway, Houston, TX 77077 – MLS# 55390682

briarhills-pkwy-14311-003-SmallBeautiful updated home in Briar Hills! Tile and slate flooring throughout – no carpet! Huge family room with soaring ceilings and surround sound, opens to study/workplace. Island kitchen with granite tops leads to dining area with soothing waterfalls – perfect for entertaining. All bedrooms plus bonus family room are downstairs plus a game room upstairs. Retreat to your lush oasis like backyard with soothing waterfalls and disappearing fountains plus outdoor speakers. Steps from Terry Hershey Park, Briar Hills pools and tennis courts.

HAR Link:  http://search.har.com/engine/14311-Briarhills-Parkway-Houston-TX-77077_HAR55390682.htm

If you are interested in buying or selling real estate in West Houston, please contact Connie Vallone with First Market Realty at 713 249 4177  or visit www.houstonenergycorridorhomes.com  or www.vallonehomes.com .

 

NEW LISTING! 14426 Daly Drive, Houston, TX 77077 – MLS# 75006436

In Buying a Home, Employers Houston Energy Corridor, Home Values, Houston Energy Corridor, Houston Real Estate Agent, Terry Hershey Park on July 15, 2014 at 6:00 pm

NEW LISTING! 14426 Daly Drive, Houston, TX 77077 – MLS# 75006436

14426 Daly DriveBeautiful Lakefront Home in Gated Terraces on Memorial. Courtyard leads to impressive entry with huge dining room. Open floor plan, Gourmet island kitchen with Thermador Stainless Steel appliances opens to family room with wall of windows with lake views. Hickory wood in all living areas. Relax in your own backyard oasis with two covered patios. Three bedrooms, study and extra room downstairs plus a media room upstairs. Master retreat with lake views and your dream custom closet. Too many upgrades to list here, see online brochure.

HAR Link:  http://search.har.com/engine/14426-Daly-Drive-Houston-TX-77077_HAR75006436.htm

If you are interested in buying or selling real estate in West Houston, please contact Connie Vallone with First Market Realty at 713 249 4177  or visit www.houstonenergycorridorhomes.com  or www.vallonehomes.com .

CononcoPhilips new office space Houston’s Energy Corridor

In Eldridge Parkway, Employers Houston Energy Corridor, Employers in West Houston, Houston Energy Corridor, Houston Real Estate Agent, Local Business, Oil and Gas companies in Houston, Relocating to West Houston, Terry Hershey Park, West Houston on May 14, 2014 at 7:37 pm

ConocoPhillips has committed to an office lease  in Houston, agreeing to occupy 850,000 square feet in a pair of new office buildings under construction  in Houston’s  Energy Corridor by Trammell Crow Co. (TCC) and its financial partner, Principal Real Estate Investors.  The two buildings are located at the southwest corner of Interstate 10 and North Eldridge Parkway in the heart of Houston’s  Energy Corridor.

Below – Quoted from  Citybizlist.com

The Energy Center campus will include an active greenspace to provide common outdoor areas for activities and is conveniently located for immediate access to multi-use parks and trails, including Terry Hershey Park, Bear Creek Park and George Bush Park.

Construction on the 20-story, Class AA Energy Center Three office tower began in December 2012 and is expected to be ready for occupancy in 2Q 2015. The 22-story, Energy Center Four, which will feature 600,000 square feet of Class AA office space, is expected to break ground in 4Q 2013 and be ready for ConocoPhillips’ occupancy in 2Q 2016. The campus will include energy efficient features to help achieve LEED® (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Gold Certification.

“We are pleased to welcome ConocoPhillips to our new Energy Center Campus, and we believe they will be an excellent addition to the growing energy services community throughout the Energy Corridor,” said Aaron Thielhorn, Managing Director with Trammell Crow Company’s Houston Business Unit. “The quality of both buildings will provide ConocoPhillips the facilities it needs to continue to build upon the Company’s growing North American oil and gas business.”
See more at: http://houston.citybizlist.com/article/conocophillips-signs-850000-square-foot-office-lease-energy-corridor#sthash.WhxEKhJd.dpuf

If you are relocating to West Houston and looking for a residential real estate expert in Houston’s Energy Corridor contact me Connie Vallone First Market Realty 713 249 4177.

www.houstonenergycorridorhomes.com or www.vallonehomes.com

Barbara Bush Elementary International Festival 2014

In Eldridge Parkway, Employers in West Houston, Houston Energy Corridor, Local Events, Local events, Parkway Villages, Schools, West Houston on April 25, 2014 at 6:57 pm

Barbara Bush Elementary in West Houston’s Energy Corridor hosts

International Festival and Fundraiser – JOIN US!
Saturday, April 26 @ 12pm – 3pm

For complete details visit the website

www.barbarabushelementary.org

 

 

www.houstonenergycorridorhomes.com

Energy Corridor Orchestra Premiers Fall 2014

In Eldridge Parkway, Energy corridor music groups, Houston Energy Corridor, Houston Real Estate Agent, Local Business, Local Events, music, orchestra west houston, Parkway Villages, West Houston on April 25, 2014 at 6:35 pm

 

“ECHO is premiering Fall of 2014.

Echo Energy Corridor Orchestra

Echo Energy Corridor Orchestra

If you play an orchestral instrument, you live or work in the Energy Corridor area, and you are looking for a community group to play with email us at info@ECHOrchestra.org for more information.”

www.echorchestra.org

 

www.houstonenergycorridorhomes.com

NEW LISTING! 1726 Lakeside Enclave Drive, Houston, TX 77077 – MLS# 49424673

In Buying a Home, Eldridge Parkway, Houston Energy Corridor, Houston Real Estate Agent, Oil and Gas companies in Houston, Parkway Villages, Terry Hershey Park on January 9, 2014 at 8:42 pm

NEW LISTING! 1726 Lakeside Enclave Drive, Houston, TX 77077 – MLS# 49424673

1726 Lakeside Enclave DriveBeautiful one story in gated Lakeside Enclave in the heart of the Energy Corridor! Step into the beautiful foyer with soaring ceilings that open to your dining and study with hardwood floors. Bright and light island kitchen with gas top and breakfast area open to the living area with tile and beautiful French doors. Master retreat with hardwood floors, two huge closets and a jetted tub in master bathroom. Walking distance to Terry Hershey Park, shopping, fitness center, restaurants and many employers!

HAR Link:  http://search.har.com/engine/1726-Lakeside-Enclave-Drive-Houston-TX-77077_HAR49424673.htm

If you are interested in buying or selling real estate in West Houston, please contact Connie Vallone with First Market Realty at 713 249 4177  or visit www.houstonenergycorridorhomes.com  or www.vallonehomes.com