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“Walkable” neighbourhoods are more sought after

1341556_hungry_birdIn times when Australians are opting for the inner-city experience over the idyllic life of the suburbia and choosing balconies instead of backyards, ‘Walkability’ has certainly become a prime criteria for selecting homes. Michael Yardney for the Property Update asserts that homes closer to amenities, transport and healthcare facilities will be among the more sought after.

Those choosing to live in apartments of the inner suburbs invariably look for amenities close by. Apart from the obvious reasons, people are also doing so as they do not find home entertainment engrossing anymore. They look for the nearest café in their leisure hours and in this regard “how near is the nearest café?” plays heavily on their mind.

In this context, it is also worth noting that about 22% of our population lives singly and thus they seek out a semblance of social life whenever they can. This translates into their search for the café houses and theatres.

The walkability index

So the crux question is- how high is your suburb/neighbourhood on the walkability index? To measure this, walkscore.com has introduced a scale which showcases how walkable is your neighbourhood. Is it too far from the consumer destinations or is it close by?  Your dwelling area is given points depending upon the distance. Sydney ranks highest with 63 points on a scale of 100, with Melbourne almost clipping on its heels with 57 points. For the uninitiated, Walkscore has taken 100 Australian cities and 3000 suburbs into consideration.

Walkable neighbourhoods are available at 20% steeper prices

Already, various Property Portals and Realtor websites have understood the importance of this index and have started displaying the Walkability score on their sites. To add, there are clear trends that ‘walkable’ neighbourhood properties which are located closer to consumer destinations are available at a premium sticker (nearly 20% above the average price). You can read the full article here.

Walkability throws people a choice

Yardney’s take on walkscore.com’s initiative can’t be disputed. In my opinion, buyers always look for spaces which are closer to transport zones, healthcare dens and consumer hubs. The explanation is simple- people love to be alone at times but they hate forced solitude. Living in proximity to consumer hubs offers them the power to choose. After all, they can enjoy their own company (or the company of their loved ones) or visit the nearest café to mix with the social flux.