Finding the right house for your family is important, but so is finding the right neighborhood. A kid-friendly neighborhood goes beyond simple safety issues and good schools. It should offer plenty of opportunities for your kids to meet other kids and engage in fun, safe activities. Here are a few ways to spot a kid-friendly area.
Look At The Parks
Just having a local park nearby isn’t quite enough. Different play structures work for different age groups, and some parks may be run-down or better for different activities.
Take a drive past the local parks and look for well-kept play structures and grounds. Also check that the parks offer play structures that are appropriate for your kids’ age group. Many now offer a range of structures for varying ages, allowing kids to enjoy them for many years to come. Keep an eye out for graffiti or litter that may indicate the park is a hangout for people you might not want around your kids.
Check For Recreation
Beyond parks, a neighborhood that offers recreational opportunities for kids is important. Look for recreation centers, local swimming pools, libraries. and more to indicate that you will be able to keep your kids entertained and learning throughout the year, without having to go far from home.
Ask for a copy of the local parks and rec department’s activities guide and flip through it to see what’s available for kids. It will give you a good idea of how that area caters to children.
Look At The Statistics
A quick look at statistics will tell you how many families with kids the same age as yours live in that neighborhood. It will let you know you’re looking at a home in an area filled with families like yours.
Neighborhoods with a lot of families tend to be kid-friendly simply by the nature of the residents. They are already aware of the presence of kids and will drive more slowly and carefully, and will anticipate the noise of kids playing.
You have probably already looked at crime for the area, but there is more to safety than that. Can your kids safely ride bikes or walk down the street in the neighborhood?
Some older areas don’t have sidewalks, forcing kids to ride in the street. Busy streets can be a danger to kids at play. Look for neighborhoods with quiet streets low on traffic and safe areas where kids can walk and play.