Stalk the Neighborhood:
Before you buy, get the lay of the land – drop by morning, noon, and night. Many home buyers have become completely distraught because they thought they found the perfect home, only to find out the neighborhood wasn’t for them.
Drive by the house at all hours of the day to see what is happening in the neighborhood.
Do your regular commute from the house to make sure it is something you can deal with on a daily basis.
Find out how far it is to he nearest grocery store, school district, and parks. Even if you don’t have kids, research the schools because it affects the value of your home. If you buy a house inn a good school district versus a lesser school district even in the same town, the value can be affected as much as 20%.
Below are helpful links on neighborhood information for a few cities in Dane County, WI: