Resale value has to do with how well your home appeals to prospective buyers. This is important because resale value affects the home's rate of appreciation, and if you decide to sell at a later date, your potential sale price. Choosing a home with high resale value is a wise move, whether you plan to live there for five years or twenty-five years.

There are many factors that affect resale value. Most of you have probably heard about the importance of location. "Location, Location, Location!" or so the chant goes. Why is it so important?

Most people would not choose to live on a busy street, an intersection, near an airport or railroad track, or in a shabby part of town. Many people desire quiet, tree-lined streets, proximity to shopping, schools and parks, and neighbors who keep up their yards and homes. Carefully choosing your home's location will not only benefit you in the short-term by allowing you to enjoy desirable attributes, but will increase your resale value down the line and possibly improve your return on investment.

Think first about the community you wish to live in. Is the city it's in economically stable? Look for a healthy mix of commercial and business districts, a good sign that jobs will be available for years to come. A thriving economy also means that roads and parks will be maintained.

Once you've found a community you like, drive around it. Find the neighborhoods that appeal to you. Chances are those very attributes that you find appealing will be equally appealing to other potential buyers.
  • The homes in the neighborhood should be similar in size and structure.
  • Avoid mixed neighborhoods, where rental units are across the street from single family homes, for example.
  • Search in the center of neighborhoods, avoiding streets that back to busy streets or border freeway sound walls.
  • Decide whether you want to live on a corner (easy to find, large yard), a cul-de-sac (safe place for children to play) or in the middle of a street.
  • Do you want to be close to a particular church, park or school? How close?
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Other factors 

Several other factors may go into choosing a good location for your home.
  • Parents may choose neighborhoods according to particular schools that they want their children to attend, for example. Check with your real estate agent or the school district office for rankings, test scores and other information on specific schools.
  • You may find that property taxes are higher in certain neighborhoods than in others. This can affect resale value, even if you believe that the taxes are there for good reason (to improve city services, parks, etc.)
  • Make sure you're within reasonable distances of essential services and stores, such as grocery stores, gas stations, shopping centers, drug stores, schools and churches.
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