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Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Troth, REALTORS® - Cassie Wrona

My Blog

Test Drive A Neighborhood...

  • Staying at home doesn’t mean your search for a new place needs to come to a standstill.
  • Check out these tips on how to explore other neighborhoods virtually in the homebuying process. You may find a spot that better suits your needs without ever leaving your living room!
  • I can help you with all of the additional steps along the way, so you’re ready to make your next move.

Check out neighborhood publications and local social media

An active neighborhood community will sometimes have a print publication or local social media groups that connect residents. These can provide information on local events and activities that will give you a better feel for the neighborhood. 

Browse Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for groups or accounts that document what's going on in the neighborhood where you're interested in moving. You can even interact with locals in the community who can give you their opinions of their locale.

Take a walk with Google

Want to take a stroll around your potential new neighborhood without leaving the couch?

“Google Street View is a great way to ‘walk’ the street and neighborhood virtually,” 

Every listing on features a link to the Google Street View for that address.

Another way to access Google Street View is to go to google.com/maps, type in the address of the house you're interested in, and click on the photo of the property in the menu to the left of the map. If Google Street View is available for that address, you should be able to click and drag the image to move down the street.

“Search engines like Google also let you filter for videos when you search the neighborhood name. 

Browse websites with neighborhood data

You want to gather as much information as possible on your next neighborhood, and there are a lot of websites that can help you do that.

City-Data provides detailed city profiles about everything from cost of living to weather to average home prices, and its forums give useful insight from community locals.

Plug in your ZIP code at AreaVibes to get a livability score and help narrow down the best places to live.

Yelp provides not only reviews on local cafes, restaurants, and nightlife, but also unfiltered reviews from local residents.

Call a real estate agent

It’s also a good idea to get in touch with a tech-savvy real estate agent like me! 

I can help by using technology to test-drive the neighborhood for you. This can easily be done by making a video of the neighborhood and sharing it with you! 

If you've identified a home you're interested in, contact MW  for more information about the neighborhood.  As a market pro I will  be sure to have an insider's perspective on the area and extensive knowledge on homes there.

Investigate schools and educational data

Relocating with your family? Then you will want to research schools in the area. A good resource is GreatSchools, which provides data on K-12 schools and reviews from parents. Areas with great schools typically maintain property values, and its neighborhoods are highly coveted.

And if you want to research education statistics, U.S. News & World Report has rankings of high schools with data on more than 23,000 public high schools in all 50 states.

Check crime rates

Safety is a priority for both buyers and renters, and crime rates can give you a picture of how safe or dangerous a neighborhood is. Low crime rates are not only safer but can also help keep property values high.

Websites such as CrimeReports can provide crime data from law enforcement agencies.

Plan your daily commute

Get a  feel for the neighborhood by monitoring traffic and your potential work commute.


Virtual Recreation For Families 2


Virtual Recreation For Families 3


“Helpful websites for parents while kids are out of school:
ELA: Spelling City, Raz-Kids, ABC Ya, National Geographic Kids
Math: Math-Whizz, Math Toybox, XtraMath

YouTube channels for young children over this long break from school:

Little Fox Kids, Jack Hartmann, Nessy, Kids vs. Life, Laughing And Learning For Young Minds

More Education and Fun sites: 

BrainPop has some cool videos and activities that my students love. Khan Academy 

GoNoodle All Ages . There are all different types of silly songs/games to get kids up and moving. There are community-building type activities. And there are yoga/meditation activities. Everything is fun and silly and perfect durations. And I don’t find it obnoxious!”

High School  No Red Ink and Quizizz 

“Physical education  Yoga with Adrienne (for older kids) and Cosmic Kids yoga (for younger kids).

DreamBox. It has a 90-day free subscription.” 

Mystery Science!” 


Education.com has offered free printable workbook packs and free game play.” 

“For parents of children with dyslexia, ‘Teach Your Monster to Read’ is a great game for helping your child learn phonics and improve their reading skills. The computer version is free.” ? Dyslexia Connect Online Tutoring

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