Last night as I watched the evening news cover the flooding in Nashville Tenn, each of the commentators mentioned how the community had pulled together to help those whose homes had been flooded. Time and time again, those interviewed also reinforced that the city had a very strong community network.
All of which brings me back to the issue of community when searching for a home. Each town and city on the Peninsula has its own flavor. Beyond charts, graphs and cost per sq foot lies the community identity, features and ammenities. Do you want to live on a hill or do you prefer being walking distance to public transportation? Do you prefer ranch style homes to new construction? What works for some may not work for you.
Schools, parks, vibrant downtown areas and citizen involvement in community issues are often critical components making communities strong. Given the current deficit in California, volunteerism and pitching in to do what is needed are more important than ever.
My advice to homebuyers: if you are thinking of buying in a new community, spend some time there first. Have dinner in a local restaurant, spend time at a farmers market, grab a cup of coffee at the local coffee shop. If you have children, call the local PTA and talk with them about schools, soccer leagues and whatever else is important on your list. Step away from your computer and take a walk around the block. See if the shoe fits.