What Do You Want in a Perfect Neighborhood?

Picture your dream neighborhood. What kinds of amenities does it have? Everyone has different tastes, but a recent survey by home improvement website Improvenet.com shows that many of us have the same ideas when it comes to what features make an area a great place to live. Improvenet asked more than 2,200 people over the age of 18 for their opinions about a variety of neighborhood-related questions. Unfortunately, just 30% of respondents reported that they currently live in their dream neighborhood, so keep reading to learn what 70% of people are apparently missing out on!

To begin with, let's see where people want to live. When asked "What's the ideal setting for a neighborhood?", a plurality of respondents (33%) chose "a quiet suburb near a city." The other choices, in order of preference, were "quieter part of big city" (25%), "bustling suburb near a city" (24%), "very quiet exurb, far from cities" (10%), and, in last place, "bustling part of big city" (8%).

Another way to look at this question is whether someone enjoys the area in which they currently live. By this metric, people living in exurbs are most dissatisfied, with only 37% wanting to be there. In comparison, 72% of people living in suburbs and 63% of people in cities are happy to be there.

Of course, even the perfect setting won't matter if it doesn't include a person's desired amenities. The survey asked respondents to rate a series of features on a scale of 1-10 according to whether each one "must be included in a dream neighborhood". As is turns out, no one wants to travel far to get groceries. Here were the top five, along with their rating:

  1. Grocery store(s), 8.8
  2. Park space, 8.0
  3. Strong public school system, 7.8
  4. Fine dining restaurants, 7.3
  5. Fast casual restaurants, 7.3

At the other end of the scale, these were the features that were rated as least important for a dream neighborhood:

  1. Place(s) of worship, 4.9
  2. Theatre (the stage variety), 4.9
  3. Large shopping mall, 5.4
  4. Music venue, 5.4
  5. Public arts (murals, sculptures, etc.), 5.5

After seeing these results, what do you think about the features of a perfect neighborhood? Are you one of the lucky 30% who already live in your dream location? Click here to read the full results of the survey, which also included questions about neighbors, commute time, and more.