Posted in: Buying a home

Understanding walkability and why it's important when buying home

Walkability and home buying

For many prospective buyers of properties for sale in Minnesota, location and price play a major role in the decision-making process. Buying a home in a walkable community is also highly desired, as not every homeowner may be able to commute by vehicle or public transportation.

Owning a home located in an area with walkability can be beneficial as more Americans have taken interest in eco-friendly transportation options. Walking is also a great way to stay in shape.

Areas that are walkable have amenities that support pedestrian right-of-ways, including bike lanes and sidewalks. Another characteristic of high walkable areas includes a mix of residential and business areas, providing an accessible community. Many buildings in these types of areas are used for multiple purposes, such as dedicating bottom floors to retail and other businesses with upper levels dedicated to condos and apartments.

VIDEO: Consider your commute when buying a home

Walkable communities are especially great for families, as local schools are generally centrally located, lowering the need for school buses. They are also typically safer, as designated crosswalks and walking paths for traveling children. Communities that lack easy access to safe sidewalks are not considered walkable.

Other community staples, including grocery stores, banks and post offices are also simple commutes by foot in walkable neighborhoods. While this may not seem like a necessity for families who own vehicles and can afford the ever-changing price of gas, buying a home with walkability means better economic development, improving public health and sustainability.

So, who determines what areas are truly "walkable?" On's property search, we employ "Walkscore" – a trusted partner that calculates the walkability of any address. Simply click on the "Walk Score" tab on any property on our site to see its official "walkability."

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