Discover the Truth About Your Neighborhood Before You Sell Your New Orleans Home
Real estate value is determined largely by location, location, location, and a big part of the location equation relies on the quality of the neighborhood. Is the neighborhood a place where people want to live and worth investing in? Is it an inexpensive place to roost while saving money to get to a better place? Or is it a place where people who can’t afford to move are stuck in a downward spiral of fear and distrust?
Not all inexpensive neighborhoods are bad neighborhoods, and taking a clear-eyed look at the situation on your own block can be an important part of estimating how much you can expect to get when trying to sell your New Orleans home fast.
Dig Deep into Crime Reports
Good neighborhoods can endure a fair amount of property crime, resulting from uninvited visitors who grab bicycles and power tools from garages, and electronics from unlocked cars. Low-income neighborhoods may struggle with money-making crimes, such as prostitution or drug dealing.
But a different type of crime appears in the most troubled neighborhoods, according to Drew Sygit of BiggerPockets.com. Quality-of-life crimes, such as vandalism, littering, and public urination reflect feelings of self-loathing by people who simply don’t care about the neighborhood, Sygit writes. If such crimes have become so routine that they draw little attention or response, it is a sign that pride of place has gone by the wayside. Other signs of neighborhoods that are too worn-down to care are unkempt public spaces, such as parks, and abandoned cars.
Consider Neighborhood Investment Trends
Development plans for a grocery store are a signal that professional investors have confidence in the neighborhood’s long-term viability. Store windows papered with “Going Out of Business” signs, however, are a signal that yesterday’s confidence has become today’s disappointment, especially if there are no plans for new businesses to replace the departed ones.
Also, if demand is low for commercial properties in your neighborhood, the owners may choose to lease those spaces to businesses such as payday loan stores that you may not consider an asset to the community, according to Erin Joyce of Investopedia.com.
Tap Information Resources
Several online tools are available as unbiased measures of a neighborhood’s strength. Alexia Chianis of Safewise.com lists several:
- AreaVibes.com provides free livability rankings for neighborhoods, searchable by ZIP code or by neighborhood name. In New Orleans, for example, livability scores range from a high of 83 for Lakewood to a low of 67 for Iberville, largely because of low high school graduation rates and low median household income.
- NeighborhoodScout.com is another source for neighborhood crime statistics and demographic information. There is a fee for detailed data and reports, but valuable insights are available for free.
- SpotCrime.com maps out recent crime reports by neighborhood, with different icons for crimes such as assault, theft, and vandalism. The “other” icon is used for police calls including hit-and-run accidents, suspicious-person reports and disturbing the peace. You can sign up to receive email or SMS alerts when a crime occurs within five miles of a certain location.
You can also use online sources to spot trends in how long New Orleans homes are staying on the real estate market in your neighborhood. Many factors influence the Days on Market (DOM) statistic, but upward or downward trends in that statistic may reflect changes in the character of the neighborhood. Realtor.com is one source for DOM statistics; the real estate market trends graphic there includes tabs for median listing prices, median days on the market, and median listing price per square foot.
If you want to sell a New Orleans home fast in a neighborhood that is falling into decline, you may not benefit from the traditional strategy of making home improvements. Big Easy Buyers offers resources for homeowners who want to sell their houses fast and move on with their lives. If your home has been sitting on the market for longer than you anticipated and hasn’t received acceptable offers, you might consider selling your house for cash.