Princeton Capital Blog

Are Corner Houses the Best in the Block?

May 13th, 2014

SuburbiaAre Corner Houses the Best in the Block?

In real estate, there are few things that people feel more strongly about then corner houses, except living near powerlines. Some people feel it increases the property value, and others feel it should be decreased.  It’s a little more complicated then that because it’s dependent upon the neighborhood, and your personality and tolerance for things like headlights shining in your bedroom window, or someone getting pulled over for drunk driving at 2:15am right outside your home.

The Good

You have lots more parking when you host parties.  It could be as small as your child’s birthday party or something major like a Superbowl party where everyone brings their car. But the good news is you have a lot of parking spots around your home.

Often a corner house has a larger lot size as it’s a wedge or unusual shape rather then the standard rectangle.

Due to off setting of houses and lots, you may not have neighbors in as close proximity as if you were in the middle of the street.  And you only have neighbors on one or two sides instead of three, depending upon setbacks and home placement. This gives you a lot more privacy in your backyard.

Corner homes are considered to have better curb appeal for resale value.

You have a lot more space for planting flowers around the front and side.

And the garage can be on a different side than the front door.  Some people feel that it makes the home look prettier. It’s also useful for sneaking out when someone is at the front door that you don’t want to see.  It can also allow for the garage to be closer to the kitchen which is really nice after a warehouse shopping trip.

The Bad

The front is never going to be as private as a non-corner home because people are always going past your home to get to their destination down the street. And if you’re on a main road, you can expect people to go past frequently.  Plus two sides of a corner house in the front are open instead of just one.  There are a number of local regulations governing what kind of privacy fences you can put up in the front as well, more so for corner homes than non-corner ones.

Corner homes statistically are burglarized more often because there’s a greater number of escape routes, but this is more dependent upon the neighborhood.  Some corner homes are less burglarized due to high visibility by the other neighbors.

You have more sidewalk to maintain if it snows, more leaves to rake in the fall, and more lawn to mow if you have a grass lawn in the front.  Some communities have strict regulations as to what the front yard can contain. Some people are growing vegetable gardens instead of grass in their front yard, and there are lawsuits pending.

More traffic means more noise.  People will tend to cut across your lawn rather than walk around the corner. And leave their garbage more often on corner lots.

Depending upon how the lots were drawn up, it may have a large front yard that’s not very usable and a tiny back yard. Not everyone wants to grill on their front yard and have deck chairs.

The To Do List

Invest in good windows and window coverings to reduce noise and increase your privacy.

Put in hedges and fences to increase your privacy.

The bottom line is you can increase the security of the house with Neighborhood Watch programs and adding in cameras as well as hiring a security company. These won’t detract from the value of the house like bars on the windows would.

Have you lived on a corner house? Would you want the larger lot?

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