Thursday, September 15, 2011

You want to put it WHERE!?

I'm now onto the final of my three dealbrakers for taking a house: Location.

The key piece of property advice that one always hears is: “Location, location, location!” and it's a very important thing. You pay more for a good location, and that goes beyond just suburb (although the benefits of living in a good suburbs are significant).

Even when you've narrowed it down to the suburb you want, you still need to look at some of the finer points:

Is it on a main road? This can have several advantages, though you generally don't want a place that is. You have to consider your individual needs, and some roads are preferable to others. For instance, Oolon and I recently decided against a place on a main road, not just because it's on that road but also because of where on that road it is. The house wasn't near any official crossings and was also in an area with a median strip that included a waist-high rail, so I couldn't cross it illegally either.

Given that I do most of my travel by bike and that I need to cross the road in order to go in the right direction for my work, this rules out any property where it's particularly difficult to do that (at least until I start getting desperate to find a place).

You also need to consider things like ground elevation and drainage (avoiding flooding), whether the area is prone to bushfires (and whether it is worth the risk in your opinion), proximity to public transport and shops, etc etc etc. My rule here is that it be within cycling distance (about 10min by bike) so that I don't feel compelled to take a car. It also needs to be possible for both me and Oolon to cycle to our respective workplaces.

So yes, we are being fussy. You might even think us snobby! But there are some aspects of lifestyle which I'm not happy to give up as long as I can afford them financially.

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