Are you looking for a new home? Are you concerned about maintaining a healthy lifestyle for both you and your loved ones? Here’s a few tips that will help you help you choose the right neighborhood for your search.
Parks and Recreation
Staying active is the key to staying healthy. One of the best ways to do that is to take advantage of local parks and organized recreation opportunities like sports leagues and fitness classes. By living near open space or forested areas, you can protect your family from air pollution from traffic congestion.
Local Ordinances and Neighborhood Associations
Some cities and towns do a great deal to protect the local environment as well as promote the health of their citizens, with ordinances regarding noise pollution and zoning. While some neighborhood associations exist instead to enforce arbitrary standards about the superficial appearance of homes, and others still have more substantive standards about sustainable landscaping and other environmental factors.
Walkability and Bikeability
Whether you’re eight or eighty years old, walking and biking are perfect ways to stay healthy and active. Residents that live in walkable neighborhoods tend to weigh up to ten pounds less than those in less walkable neighborhoods. Walk Score rates a neighborhood’s walkability and bikeability score using the proximity of shops and services, as well as features like sidewalks, bike lanes, and crosswalks.
Water Quality and Other Concerns
Unless you’re willing to spend hundreds of dollars every year on filtration systems, you should make sure the neighborhood you choose has a high-quality public water supply and is free of any chemical and industrial contaminants. The Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) website aggregates data on water quality, air quality, as well as any known and threatened releases of hazardous substances, and formal industrial sites (known as brown fields), allowing you to search your area by its zip code.