The Wrong Side of the Tracks

By
Real Estate Agent with RE/MAX Select One

The Wrong Side of the Tracks


I recently read a blog on ActiveRain.com (http://activerain.com/blogsview/1466639/how-would-you-answer-this-question-) that asked real estate professionals how they would answer this question: 

"What areas of town should we stay away from when considering buying a new home?"
This is a pretty loaded question for anyone to work with especially a real estate professional. There are a lot of implications when you say someone should stay away from a particular neighborhood as opposed to a different one. Not to mention that there are legalities here when you take the Fair Housing Act of 1968 into consideration. A Realtor should never make any suggestions or lead a client to or away from a property due to the agent's opinions of the the neighbors ethnicity, income levels, education levels or any other reason. It's just not fair to the client to have their agent's values essentially pushed upon them. I was not able to find anywhere in the Fair Housing Act that it would be illegal to suggest or recommend against a particular property though.

There are lots of condos for sale in Huntington Beach but ultimately what you'll consider a good or bad neighborhood has more to do with your tolerance for your neighbor's junk than the actual statistics of the community, which you'll probably forget as soon as you read them and may have been made up in the first place. Did you know that 60% of all statistics are made up on the spot to make a point? Did I get you on that one?

I can totally agree with the motives behind asking this question. I would much rather raise my children in a neighborhood that doesn't struggle with lots of gang activity and where they'll grow up with friends who plan on attending college. But there is an unknown factor here andit's you. I believe that the way a neighborhood is and the way it effects your family has as more to do with you than it does the neighborhood itself.

People often look at neighborhoods with golf greens for lawns and luxury cars in the driveways and say "Now this... is a nice neighborhood". Alternatively they may look at a place with older buildings and bars on the windows and say "This neighborhood is terrible". The biggest factor as to whether or not you'll enjoy living in a particular neighborhood has a lot to do with the relationships you create with your neighbors themselves. In some parts of Huntington Beach it's not uncommon for neighbors to not ever see each other or interact. Yet, in less desirable neighborhoods in Santa Ana you might see neighbors out talking with each other or even working to improve their neighborhood together. This is certainly not always the case, I just bring it up to issue you a challenge. How can we stop seeing "Good" or "Bad" neighborhoods and start seeing people, and their junk (don't we all have some of that?).

So the next time you're looking for homes or condos for sale in Huntington Beach or Orange County, don't look to see that every kid has the new Apple iPad in their hands, maybe a soccer ball is a sign of a healthy community too. Thanks for reading, for more visit www.dixonteamoc.com. 

 

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Topic:
ActiveRain Community
Location:
California Orange County
Tags:
homes for sale in huntington beach
condos for sale in huntington beach
neighborhoods
communities
forclosures

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Rainmaker
582,797
Susan Neal
Fair Oaks CA & Sacramento Area Real Estate Broker
RE/MAX Gold, Fair Oaks

I get similar questions all the time, such as "I want a neighborhood that is 'safe' and doesn't have a bad element in it." I suggest to buyers that they check the local police or news station websites where they have maps with crimes marked on them.  I remind them that crime goes on everywhere to some extent and I can't know about every vandalism or loud party or whatever all over the large area I serve, and I don't know which things would be the ones most difficult for them to live with, so it is best if they do that research themselves.  I will give them links to the websites, but that is as far as I'll go.  I don't want to steer people away from areas, and especially to tell someone that a neighborhood is safe, and them have them sue me if they get victimized.

February 01, 2010 11:24 PM
Rainer
19,509
Dixon Team OC
RE/MAX Select One

Great response Susan. I always think it's best to let people make choices for themselves rather than guide them to what your own personal standards might be. 

-Dixon Team OC

www.dixonteamoc.com

February 02, 2010 11:30 AM
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Rainer
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Dixon Team OC

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