Imagine you’ve purchased a home in a nice neighborhood. Then, once you’ve moved, you discover that your kids’ school is not only far away, but also difficult to get to because of heavy commuter traffic. That’s an irritation that is not likely to go away until your kids have grown! How do you avoid a situation like that?

When shopping for a new home, make a list of places and features you’d like to have nearby. Then, factor those in when selecting neighborhoods to target.

For example, you might want your commute to work to be a relatively easy drive or transit ride. You might also want a park or playground to be within reasonable walking distance. If you have a hobby, such as golf, you might hope for a driving range or golf course to be within a half-hour drive.

In any home search, you may need to compromise. You may not find all of your wish list available in any one neighborhood. But, the most important places and features you hope to have should definitely be in your profile of the ideal home.