What defines quality of life? No, I did not spell “PSYCH!” incorrectly……I put these 5 letters together in a corny, somewhat memorable way to highlight five important real estate value adders. In a recent survey of the most livable cities in the world, the following five considerations were the most important ones. These are considerations we should all evaluate as home buyers as they provide real added value to the quality of life of a city or town:
- Stability: This involves security, crime and the essentials such as fire protection, law enforcement, local government stability, etc.
- Education: Quality schools, colleges, and a focus on a strong education is always good for any area.
- Infrastructure: In a world of decaying infrastructure – that can require enormous funding to replace or repair – checking out the area’s infrastructure quality is key. Equally important is whether there is sufficient infrastructure to meet the growing needs of an area. If more is being added, how is this being funded?
- Culture/environment:: A new symphony theater, sports auditorium, Opera House, park, etc all add value to quality of life. What about the attractiveness of streets and retail? Are there walk-able areas with cafes and meaningful retail?
- Healthcare: Health is still the ultimate wealth. Access to all levels of quality healthcare is critically important.
Not only do these five critical “S.E.I.C.H.” items provide quality of life, they also enhance real estate values. Whenever an area provides a lifestyle that embraces all five of these consideration, people are automatically attracted to live there. Chances are this area will either grow more or become even more valuable if limited housing cannot be added due to restrictive zoning.