If you’ve heard it once, you’ve heard it a thousand times, when it comes to buying a house, location, location, and location are the three most important factors to consider. Well, okay it’s only one, but it’s the most important one. Location is where you begin the house hunting project. This is why master planned suburban communities like the ones that we offer throughout Houston and its outskirts are great locations to buy.
Based on recent behaviors, it’s easy to see that builders and consumers prefer master planned communities. These communities reported the strongest sales since 2007. It’s easy to see why consumers prefer the suburban lifestyle over the urban lifestyle. Consumers feel that a master planned community has a quality environment, are a good value, and provide access to amenities that they wouldn’t have access to anywhere else.
Consumer research consistently reflects that the majority of consumers prefer suburban settings with a mixture of amenities. In a 2011 National Association of Realtors home buyer survey, consumers in all ages groups preferred suburban places with a mixture of commercial development and characteristics typically found in a master planned community. In that same survey, it was found that most generations, including Generation Y, preferred single-family detached homes. Master planned communities provide a range of housing styles and prices, sufficient recreational and social amenities, shopping, and schools.
On the other hand urban communities are expensive and impractical. Still, builders attempt to convert the urban lifestyle by using words such as “walkable,” “mixed use,” and “complete streets.” Then before a developer can finish his project, a new apartment complex or office park pops up. Other developers attempt the town center community. While living this lifestyle is great for singles, it’s definitely not desired by the majority.
When you think about the practical things in life, you realize that these urban communities aren’t practical for average families. There’s a multitude of reasons that all generations prefer the master planned community over an urban community. Realistically, who wants to live in a town center above a restaurant? It’s noisy, the risk of catching on fire is higher, and you won’t be able to park close to home.
As for the urban neighborhoods, the closer you get to downtown, the higher the price of real estate. And, for what? All you get is a small lot with a large house and the noise of the city. As you decide to have children, they won’t even have a yard to play in. And, don’t even think about letting them ride their bikes on a city street.