Trees and 9 Other Things in Your Neighborhood That Boost Home Prices

If you’re looking for ways to increase the value of your home, it might be easier than you think. Did you know your neighborhood’s amenities could result in more money in your pocket? All you have to do is look around you, and you’ll begin to see things that might cause your home’s value to rise. Let’s take a closer look at 10 things around you that could increase the value of your home.

1. Walkability

woman commuting going to office by walk

Potential homebuyers want to be able to walk to stores and transportation. | iStock.com/diego_cervo

How convenient is your town? If you enjoy access to plenty of transportation and your neighborhood is highly walkable, this will instantly improve your home’s value. Potential homebuyers want to be able to walk a few blocks to eat at great restaurants, buy groceries, or be a few steps away from buses and trains. You can discover your neighborhood’s walkability by taking a walk around your town and making note of how close (or far) services are.

You can also go online to see your neighborhood’s walk score when you visit walkscore.com. A walk score can be anywhere from 0 to 24 for a neighborhood that requires a car to 90 to 100 for a neighborhood that allows you to run errands on foot.

2. Trees

mature trees

Most homebuyers dream of living on a tree-lined street. | Stock.com

Who doesn’t want to live in a neighborhood with plenty of trees and lush, green grass? Most homebuyers dream of living on a tree-lined street. If your neighborhood is surrounded by mature trees, this can be a great selling point when advertising your home. Researchers have found landscaping, especially with mature trees, can boost your home’s value by up to 20%.  

3. Dog parks

puppy on the grass

When pet owners look for a new place to live, they usually keep their furry friends in mind. | iStock.com/tobkatrina

People are wild about their pets. When pet owners look for a new place to live, they usually keep their furry friends in mind. One feature that will delight a dog owner (and his fur baby) is a dog park and other dog-friendly home features.

“Calling out features or local pet-friendly amenities can make or break a buyer’s interest in a particular property. If a buyer knows a home they love already has features the family dog or pet will also love, they’ll be more inclined to give that home a second look and consider it more than others on their list,” real estate agent Eileen Healy told Move Inc.

4. Hiking trails

couple hiking

Most homeowners don’t want to stay indoors all day when they have some downtime. | iStock.com

It’s nice to get out of the house every now and then for some exercise and fresh air. Most homeowners don’t want to stay indoors all day when they have some downtime. If your home is close to an outdoor feature, such as a hiking trail, you’ll score big points with the outdoorsy set. For example, researchers at Headwaters Economics found a popular trail in Austin, Texas, resulted in home values near the trail increasing anywhere from 6% to 20%. Similar findings were seen in neighborhoods in Washington, Delaware, and Ohio.

5. Bike paths

woman cycling outside

A bike path is a great selling point. | iStock.com

Homebuyers seeking alternate forms of transportation, as well as a desire to live in neighborhoods with less traffic, are often delighted to see a bike trail nearby. An article that appeared on real estate site Curbed quoted experts who said homes near bike paths could expect to sell quicker. The article also mentioned a report where North Carolina real estate agents discovered 40 homes next to a bikeway saw property increases of $5,000 or more.

6. Good schools

group of school kids with tablet pc

Living in a good school district can make a big difference. | iStock.com/dolgachov

Homebuyers with children will be looking for a house near good schools. Most parents are looking for a place they can call home for many years, so they can raise their families without the disruption of a move. In a Trulia survey, roughly 19% of respondents said their dream house is located in a good school district. Among those with children under the age of 18, the percentage rose to 35%.

7. Planned neighborhood development

upper middle class houses in Louisville, KY

You can find out about planned neighborhood development by placing a call to city hall or reading your local newspapers. | iStock.com/jnatkin

Future amenities are also a selling point. When homebuyers hear that popular stores or new means of public transportation are coming to the area, they are inclined to snatch up nearby homes before too many other buyers catch wind of future development. You can find out about planned neighborhood development by placing a call to city hall or reading your local newspapers.

8. Community associations

group meeting

Many homebuyers seek the familiarity local associations provide. | iStock.com/Edward Bock

Community groups bring a sense of closeness to a neighborhood. Many homebuyers seek the familiarity local associations provide. For example, a neighborhood-watch group or a local group to help keep the neighborhood clean are desirable associations to have around. Homebuyers with small children might be on the lookout for these features.

9. Stores

Starbucks

When selling your home, make sure to mention stores in the area. | Paul J. Richards/AFP/Getty Images

Access to shopping and other recreational activities is a big draw for many homebuyers. When popular retailers move into a neighborhood, other businesses usually follow, and buyers know this. When selling your home, make sure to mention stores in the area, as well as stores that are planning to appear in the future. The availability of local shops (especially coffee shops) could make or break a sale.

Research by Zillow found a home’s proximity to Starbucks could make a huge difference in whether a home sold. “Over 17 years tabulated by Zillow, leading up to 2014, homes adjacent to the local Starbucks almost doubled in value, up by 96%. Those further out appreciated by 65% over the same period,” reported Money magazine.

10. Historic homes

couple standing outside a large suburban house

Homes in historic districts saw property values rise by 5% to 35% each decade. | iStock.com/monkeybusinessimages

The presence of historic homes and other historic sites adds a bit of charm and value to a neighborhood. In addition, a historic home has the tendency to rise in value quicker than other homes on the market, according to Realtor.com. Furthermore, research has shown homes in historic districts saw property values rise by 5% to 35% each decade over the values in similar neighborhoods without a historic designation.

Follow Sheiresa on Twitter @SheiresaNgo.   

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