NAR Survey: People Want Walkable Neighborhoods

Looking for specific topics?



Try sorting by categories

Or, view our archive

What do home buyers want? A new survey from the National Association of Realtors says: a single-family detached house in a walkable neighborhood.


NAR Survey Results

Interestingly, according to the NAR 2013 Community Preference Survey, living in the suburbs can either be the most favorable or the least favorable for people, depending entirely on whether there are shops and businesses to walk to: the most popular ideal community was a suburban neighborhood with a mix of houses, shops and businesses, whereas the least popular was a suburban neighborhood with only houses and no shops or businesses. Additional stats:

  • 60% of participants prefer a neighborhood with a mix of houses, stores and other businesses that are within easy walking distance, rather than a neighborhood that necessitates more driving between home, work and recreation.
  • 78% said the neighborhood is more important to them than house size.
  • 55% were willing to trade a home with larger yard for a smaller home within walking distance of schools, stores and restaurants, as opposed to getting larger yard but needing to drive schools, stores and restaurants.

Filter Property Search by Context Walkability

Maponics Context Walkability™ rates the walkability of particular geographies based on the ease with which people can get to leisure and amenity points of interest on foot. To find neighborhoods that are the most walkable, consumers could use Walkability to filter their property search results. When projected onto neighborhood boundaries, Walkability handily points out just which neighborhoods have the most points of interest such as schools, grocery stores and coffee shops - exactly the areas home buyers most desire, according to the NAR study. With more ratings, more features, and eleven complementary datasets, Walkability is often a better choice than Walk Score, too.


Add Demographics and Real Estate Sales and Inventory

For further insight, home buyers could use Context Demographics, Context Real Estate Sales and Context Real Estate Inventory to drill down into the search results. Context Demographics provide data about the people within an area, measuring such attributes as "total number of families" and "number of people who walk to work." Context Demographics can help home buyers find exactly what they're looking for in a neighborhood.


Context Real Estate Inventory includes information about the housing stock in a particular polygon. With data points about Average/Median Bed, Bath, Square Footage and over twenty more, consumers get property specs, neighborhood by neighborhood. And by conveying the sales trends in a polygon, Context Real Estate Sales gives an indication of what you might need to spend on a house in a given neighborhood.

Maponics Neighborhood Boundaries - Real-Life Geographies Home Buyers Understand

All of this lifestyle data - the type of information home buyers increasingly want as part of their home search - is best delivered in the framework of a neighborhood boundary. People more often refer to residential areas in terms of what neighborhood they fall into - not by street or ZIP Code. Maponics Neighborhood Boundaries represent the largest dataset ever compiled for neighborhood boundaries. The biggest names in real estate trust our neighborhood data, including Trulia, Century 21 and Redfin.


The NAR survey gives us a better understanding of what people want in a property. Real estate portals can use Maponics products to lead consumers to their dream home. Contact Maponics for a quote on Walkability, Demographics and Neighborhood Boundaries, as well as our other products.