It’s one thing to buy a house for you and your partner, or if your kids are still very young. It’s another thing entirely when you need to buy a house and you have teenage kids in your household. You have to take their needs and their opinions into account. This particular demographic is a huge factor for the demand in real estate in Gatineau and other similar locations, as these cities offer lots of “cool” activities for young adults and teens.
So how do you buy a house when your family includes teenagers? You will have to ask yourself the following questions:
- How’s the quality of the schools? If you’re like most parents, this factor will be a major influence in your decision to buy a house. The nearby schools must have an excellent reputation, and if you’re planning on a private school then it should be located conveniently close to your place. The quality of the school will play a crucial role in the future of your teenagers, especially when they decide to head to university afterwards.
- What’s the security situation like? You should take a look at the neighborhood’s crime rates, and read news about any sort of gang activity going on. While Canada is relatively much safer than the US, the problem of gang activity isn’t going to go away. This is especially true in Toronto, Montreal, and Calgary. Smaller cities aren’t immune either.
- Are there lots of other young teens around? Teens are very sensitive to the ages of the people around them, and they’ll not quite fit in if you live in a place where most people are retirees. They won’t like it either if the neighborhood is filled with young families. So pick a city with a younger median age than the national average. Teens may favor Gatineau as its median age is just 38.4, compared to the Canada average of 40.6. In contrast, Quebec’s median age is older at 41.9 years.
- How close is the house to the mall? The mall is the one place that just about all teenagers will want to visit, and you really should think about getting a house that’s near one. As the parent, you’ll either have to drive your kids to the mall or let them ride public transportation to reach the place. For your convenience and peace of mind, it’s better if the mall is just nearby.
- What sports are popular in the area? Many parents despair of having teenagers glued to their gaming consoles, but some kids do like sports. If they don’t then perhaps the proximity of nearby sports areas may tempt them to participate. In some places like Gatineau, there are lots of excellent parks and places that encourage hiking, boating, and even alpine skiing.
- Where are the hospitals? Kids tend to get in trouble every now and then. They can get sick, and if they are physically active in sports or with biking they can get hurt. It’s good to know where the hospitals are, and you may as well get an idea of how good the place is in treating teens.
- How are the restaurants in the area? These are the places where you’ll take your family out for meals sometimes. These are also probably the places (aside from the mall) where your teens will go on dates.
Just remember that when you buy real estate in Gatineau, you ought to consult your teenager’s opinion before you make your decision. They’re at an age when their opinions count, so that everyone feels good about the new house when you move in.