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Choosing Which Area To Live In

By: Jeff Durham - Updated: 3 Nov 2010 | comments*Discuss
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When you decide to move home, you may have a very good idea of the type of home you want to live in – whether it’s a new construction or existing property - but you’ll also need to think about the location. Obviously, there will be many variables when it comes to this. These will depend on personal preferences, the size of your family and any children you may have as well as there being other factors which you’ll need to consider if you’re looking at moving abroad. Your mortgage, for one, may limit the number of options you’ll have. Although not exhaustive, this article looks at some of the more common aspects that people tend to consider when choosing a location or area in which to live.

The Immediate Environment

Whether you’re looking at homes for sale or a rental property, one of your first considerations will be the type of residential environment you wish to live in. Some people prefer the hustle and bustle of town or city life whilst others enjoy the many attractions that a town and city can bring but who prefer things a little less frenetic. Therefore, they might choose to live in a suburb. Others prefer close-knit communities where everybody tends to know one and other so they might prefer to live in a village. Then there are people who might be looking to get away from it all and live in a remote rural or coastal location. Rental property may be more difficult to obtain in certain locations more than others. Nevertheless, the type of environment you want to live in is going to be important to you.

Consider Your Lifestyle

All of us will have hobbies, sports and other cultural and entertainment activities we like to pursue. Therefore, whether you’re looking at homes for sale or rental property, you’ll need to consider how easy it is to gain access to the things you enjoy doing. Lovers of the arts, theatre and concerts, for example, would be better served by living in a town, city or nearby suburb. On the other hand, those who spend a lot of time pursuing an outdoor adventure lifestyle would be better suited to living in the countryside or, perhaps, in a village or suburb close to the countryside. These days most local authorities can provide you with maps of the area which often include the full range of activities and attractions which are available in the immediate vicinity or close by. Tourist boards have maps and other useful guides to attractions and things to do in the area too.


You may need to consider the local schools system if you have children. Also, the kind of access you’ll have to healthcare facilities such as the nearest health centre and hospital. Access to your place of work will be important so if your relocation means a change of job, the location you choose to live in will often be determined by the type of work that is available in a specific area and how long it will take you to get to and from work each day. Also, if you don’t have a car, you’ll need to find out the provisions for local public transport.


Safety is an issue which concerns all of us. When you’re relocating – particularly to a new area which you may not know all that well - it’s important to do your research and to speak to people who live in the local community as well as to the police about crime rates in the area and its overall safety.

Weather And Climate

This will probably be one of the highest priorities on your list if you’re relocating abroad. If you’re a sun worshipper, you may want to choose a location that has plenty of good weather year-round. Likewise, if you enjoy skiing or other snow based activities regularly, you may want to choose a colder climate.

Cost Of Living

You might have found the perfect place to live but it’s also crucial to establish whether or not you can afford to live there. Even if your mortgage makes the cost of the house itself affordable, you’ll also need to establish associated costs such as any local taxes and things like the costs of food and household bills, for example.

Other things which may also be important to you when you’re choosing an area or location in which to live could include religious provisions such as access to your local church and even the general ‘politics’ of an area. Believe it or not, people can feel as though they stick out like a sore thumb if they’re living in a conservative (with a small ‘c’) community as opposed to a more liberal and free-spirited one.

Therefore, getting a mortgage sorted and considering whether you want to move into a new construction property or an existing one is just the beginning. Choosing an area in which to live involves far more than those things and there will be plenty for you to consider before you’re able to find the home and location of your dreams.

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