When prospective buyers seek their next home, it’s easy for the focus to fall almost entirely on the property itself. But moving house entails a change of surroundings too, so it’s important to think about the type of area to settle down in.

Along with contributing to happiness and quality of life at home, the location could significantly influence the resale value of the property and future investment prospects too. Whether you’re taking your first steps on the ladder or you’re adding another property to your portfolio, it’s always worth doing some local research first.

House hunting What makes the perfect location

What should you consider when choosing a location for your next property?

  • Neighbourhood and safety

Many first-time buyers aim to buy a new house to raise a family over the next few years, so neighbourhood safety is imperative. But even if you’re not going to have children in the house, it’s important to make sure you can feel safe and secure when you’re at home and when you leave your property too.

Some of the safest places to live and work in the UK include Warwickshire, Suffolk, North Yorkshire, Sussex, Dorset and Surrey, all areas with a lower-than-average overall crime rate. Considering new build homes in a town like Brighton means you can enjoy a welcoming community feel along with peace of mind about your local area.

  • Proximity to key amenities

No matter your age or circumstances, it’s important to make sure you move somewhere you can access the most important amenities. Key locations like schools, supermarkets, transport networks and retail offerings could make a difference to your quality of life in the new area.

Even if you’re hoping to move to the suburbs, try to make sure that you’ll be within a catchment area for shopping or grocery deliveries. Your research should include looking at the specific shops in a certain area too, to make sure you’re close to all your favourites.

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  • Prospects for the area

Try to think about where you’d expect the area to be in 5-10 years. Should you expect the value of your property to increase over time, or will it fall victim to a stagnant market? With falling house prices reflecting low buyer confidence, it’s crucial to choose an area that proves consistently popular and shows signs of stability.

It’s useful to know how to spot up-and-coming areas with the potential to become cultural hubs or hotspots for business. Bradford, for example, has been crowned UK City of Culture 2025 and expects to receive significant government funding to boost cultural offerings and events in the area.

  • Natural environment

With a rising demand for rural properties – or those in suburban villages with easy access to green spaces – you should try to think about nature. While this factor might need to be compromised for inner-city apartments and townhouses, it’s still possible to find an avenue to the outdoors, whether in the form of a small balcony or patio.

As for larger family homes, eco-conscious designs will soon become more prevalent. Newbuilds and renovation projects that prioritise green spaces, the use of sustainable materials, and renewable energy sources should be favoured for longer-term investment.

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You should consider more than just the quality of the property itself when you’re choosing a new house. Alongside property value and market trends, which could inevitably determine your return on investment, you should think about the quality of life provided by the local area. From the local pub to the nearest National Park, try to cover every detail during the planning stages.