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Northeast Los Angeles has many great homes in extraordinary neighborhoods. Some are more attractive than others – here’s how to know how to choose.

Whether you’re looking  to purchase real estate in Highland Park or homes in Mt. Washington, Garvanza, Glassell Park or Hermon, you are aware that there are some pretty awesome neighborhoods in NELA (Northeast Los Angeles). The housing stock of vintage and new builds attracts a diversity of families, singles and empty nesters.

But NELA isn’t Nirvana. There are neighborhoods that are less desirable, with perhaps under-performing schools, a higher crime rate, where homes are in poor repair or where transportation and access to amenities are limited. So it pays to do your homework on where the better neighborhoods lie. 

This advice is offered with a single, significant caveat: Sometimes the tired neighborhoods of today are the hot spots a few years down the road. People who have an instinct for this often make out well in value appreciation. An example is Highland Park and retail districts along Colorado Boulevard, Eagle Rock Boulevard, York Boulevard and North Figueroa Street where the combination of hip retail with Arts and Crafts bungalows has contributed heavily to its regentrification. But the earliest pioneers in some of these neighborhoods had to endure the challenges and risks of waiting for things to get better.

People with school-age children are less likely to be pioneers, looking instead for quality homes near good schools and decent parks and other recreational facilities. Others who have a commute to work – downtown or elsewhere – look for transportation options. And of course everyone wants to see prices that are low when they buy but will increase after their purchase.

So how does one sort through desirable vs. undesirable neighborhoods while considering the features (and price) of a home?

There are several websites that can provide statistical data. They include HomeFacts.com, which assesses the ratings of local schools, crime statistics, sex offenders, environmental hazards in the vicinity and demographic information from recent censuses; similar information can be found at NeighborhoodScout.com and GreatSchools.org. Another site to look at is Walkscore.com, a way to see how walk-worthy a neighborhood is, assessing the presence of sidewalks and places within reasonable walking distance such as stores, schools, libraries, parks, etc. 

That said, your Realtor is someone who might provide the best, most current information. Not all websites are frequently refreshed, such that an uptick (or downtick) in a characteristic might not yet have registered on one of these rating websites. If a school has a new principal it might be sufficiently improving even if test scores do not yet reflect it. Even Google Streetview can be years out of date, failing to show new construction, landscape improvements, etc.

Realtor Tracy King has worked in the NELA towns since the early 1990s, accumulating a familiarity with the area that homebuyers and home sellers alike find valuable. Contact her to learn more about what is available and where.

tracy 150x175With over 30 years experience in helping clients buy and sell homes in Northeast Los Angeles, Tracy King has a depth of real estate knowledge that makes her the go-to for both the first-time home buyer and the seasoned real estate investor. When she's not holding open houses or negotiating offers, Tracy enjoys wine tasting, cooking, or planning her next trip to Paris. If you are looking to buy or sell a home in Northeast Los Angeles, contact the Tracy King Team at 626.827.9795 or team@tracyking.com.