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Since we cover a broad region of Broward County, we have included the most handy links in one easy to access area. This way you can find out more information to any area you are planning to move to or are already living in

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Getting to know the Neighborhood

How to research potential cities and suburbs

My NeighborhoodThe neighborhood and area surrounding your home can have a big impact on your lifestyle. This is where you and your family live, work and play. While most home buyers understand the importance of a home inspection to evaluate the physical condition of a home, many do not think about investigating the neighborhood and surrounding areas. Here are some of the things you may want to investigate about a neighborhood before buying a home.

Crime Rate

If you are concerned that your neighborhood or city are becoming unsafe, checking the crime rate can be your first step toward security. It can also be helpful in determining whether or not parts of the neighborhood or city in which you live are still safe for children or if you should move to a certain part of town. Fortunately, there are many resources available online for crime rates and statistics. You can contact the local police department, go the the FBI's website, or go to http://www.cityrating.com/citycrime.asp

 

Freeway Construction

Although the existence of a freeway near your home may provide highly desirable access, sometimes it contributes to undesirable noise. New freeways are built on a regular basis and existing roadways may be expanded. To find out about planned freeway/roadway construction and planning, go to the Florida Department of Transportation website at http://www.dot.state.fl.us/

 

Military and Public Airport

Florida law requires the identification of areas in the immediate vicinity of military and public airports that are susceptible to a certain level of noise from aircraft. The boundaries of these areas have been plotted on maps that can help you determine if a home falls within one of these areas. Maps for many of the public airports, including Miami International Airport and Ft. Lauderdale/Hollywood Airport may be viewed at the respective airport websites. Be aware that although these maps show areas subject to the preponderance of airport-related noise, periodic over-flights that may contribute to noise cannot usually be determined from these maps.

 

Environmental Hazards

Before buying a home, home buyers may want to obtain information about the potential impact of any environmental hazards, such as soil and groundwater contamination or air pollution. Local, county, or state health or environmental departments are sources of such information. For example, the Florida Department of Environmental Protection website, http://www.dep.state.fl.us/ contains a great deal of environmental information. Also, there are areas in Florida where the soil and groundwater have been contaminated by improper disposal of contaminants, such as Superfund sites. To check if a home is in an area designated by the FDEP as requiring cleanup, go to http://www.dep.state.fl.us/waste/categories/wc/pages/npl_1199.htm.

 

Schools

We advise new home buyers to contact the school district to determine whether nearby schools are accepting new students. You may find that your children cannot attend the school nearest you and may even be transported to another community. Home buyers should visit the local school to talk with the teachers and students as well. In addition, public and charter school information may be accessed at the Florida Department of Education website, http://www.fldoe.org/. You can also review the School Accountability reports by going to http://schoolgrades.fldoe.org/ . This site contains a lot of information, including School Report Cards that list school accomplishments and student achievement.

 

Noise and Odors

A neighborhood may have completely different characteristics at different times of the day. Noise and odors may be barely noticeable at some times and quite noticeable at other times. Buyers should drive around the neighborhood, preferably on different days at several different times of the day and evening, to investigate the noise and odor levels, as well as any other significant characteristics.

 

Neighbors

Talk to the surrounding neighbors about the neighborhood and the history of the home being considered for purchase. Neighbors can provide a wealth of information.