Whether you’re looking to move up in the real estate market or downsize, finding an ideal neighbourhood can be difficult. Not only is affordability a prime concern, but you want to find an area that you’re going to enjoy living in as well. While only you truly know what you’re looking for, below are a few online resources that can help make your neighbourhood hunt a little easier:

1. Walkability

While it’s not important to everyone, a lot of people are looking for neighbourhoods where they can park their car in the driveway and get a bit of exercise when they’re not at work. If you’d like to see how walkable a prospective neighbourhood is, check out www.walkscore.com. It will map out the closest grocery stores, coffee shops, restaurants, parks and other amenities and give your potential future home a score out of 100.

2. The Starbucks Effect

While you may not necessarily like its coffee, a Starbucks can say a lot about your prospective neighbourhood. This article outlines the effects the coffee shop chain has on property values, and the type of neighbours it attracts.

3. Schools

If you have school-aged children, chances are you want to move to an area that not only has a school nearby, but a good school. The Fraser Institute puts together an annual report of school rankings that can prove to be very helpful when finding a good one. Check it out here: http://www.compareschoolrankings.org/