“Location, location, location,” is one of the most commonly used phrases when discussing real estate, but in reality every individual and / or family has their own needs and desires when it comes to finding the right neighborhood to purchase a home. Some people want the fast-paced urban lifestyle while others crave the quiet feel of a small town. With so many options, it can be challenging to find which neighborhood to call home.

A great way to start the search is through online resources such as Coldwell Banker Real Estate’s Lifestyle Search (www.coldwellbanker.com/lifestyleSearch), which allows potential home buyers to rank neighborhood features, such as “Art & Music” or “A+ Schools,” by importance to their lifestyle. The Lifestyle Search will then select areas that fit these criteria. Another helpful resource is On Location (www.youtube.com/coldwellbanker), which showcases community videos that can provide a look into different neighborhoods from the comfort of home.

To help consumers navigate the many great neighborhood options available across the U.S., the professionals at Coldwell Banker have provided the following five tips.

1. Assemble a strong team of professionals. This is key no matter what the location. Finding a trusted real estate agent and mortgage professional who can guide and advise throughout the home buying process is critical to having a smooth and successful home buying experience. Also, when it comes to an expert in the local area, a knowledgeable real estate agent is a great guide and can point consumers to resources that will help ease the neighborhood search and get the information to make an educated decision.

2. Spend time exploring the local city or town. Most Americans decide to purchase a home based on a lifestyle change. Whether searching for the first home for a growing family or looking for the perfect retirement neighborhood, find out if the potential town provides the right features. For example, families with young children will want to research safety, school rankings as well as parks and recreation options. If health concerns are an issue, make sure there are doctors and / or hospitals nearby. Explore the area as much as possible to find out which neighborhood will provide the best quality of life.