You should consider the street that a house is situated on and where that house is on that street when making a purchase. In regard to where a house it situated, it is usually a choice of two, on the corner or in the block. A house on the corner has the benefits of more natural light and only having one neighbor to deal with. However, a corner house may have less street parking, more noise from the two streets, and more area to mow or shovel.
In regard to the streets themselves, there are busy streets, unpaved streets, dead-end streets, and cul-de-sacs. Those who are fans of busy streets point to the street being the first to be clean, have the snow plowed, be salted, and have additional police presence. Those who do not like busy streets point to the traffic noise, the dirt, and the easy access for drive-by crime. You will need to determine on how busy of a street you want to live. In some neighborhoods, saying you will take a house on the busy street puts you on the double-line highway with a 65 mph speed limit, while in others it just means you are on the school bus route.
Unpaved streets can be in a quiet area of a town or in the country. You should find out if there are plans for paving the street, which will raise your taxes, before you buy a house on an unpaved street. Unpaved streets are usually the last to be plowed or salted, and in the summer produce clouds of dirt that can drift into your home.
Dead-end streets can keep people away who just use the street as a shortcut for going somewhere else. In some areas, dead-end streets were installed to separate a crime-ridden area from one that did not have a large amount of crime. Dead-ends can cause confused drivers to trespass on your land while turning around and can be a spot where illegal dumping is done. Those who are opposed to dead-ends point to the fact that a dead-end may inhibit routine police patrols and the crime deterrent that traffic has on criminal activity.
Cul-de-sacs are streets, similar to dead-ends, that do not go through to the next block. They are different from dead-ends because the street ends in a wide circle that allows drivers to go around the circle. Besides houses facing across from each other, there are homes on the curved part of the cul-de-sac. For families with children this can be a very safe street. However, no street, no matter how safe, can guarantee a child’s protection. Those who live on the cul-de-sac not only have to deal with the neighbors next door, but with all the people living on the street. Cul-de-sacs have been referred to as the fishbowls of suburbia. Cul-de-sacs do have a great potential for crime prevention, due to all the eyes watching who comes and goes on the street.
No matter what type of street a home is on, once you find a home that you are interested in, drive by that home at various times of day and night to see if the street meets your needs. What looks like a very quiet side street during the day may be a raging throughway at rush hour.