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Old 07-31-2007, 05:59 PM
23 posts, read 160,534 times
Reputation: 31


I need some advice on a home that I am in the progress of purchasing. I acted in haste and failed to factor in the traffic noise (busy 4 lane road) that is behind the house.
The backyard is greenbelted by a common treelined area. The backyard also has some young evergreen trees on the fence that will hopefully someday filter/hide some of the noise.

My realtor said this would not be a resale problem since there are a pool of buyers who would like the large lot with the greenbelt and the noise would not be an issue. The houses in the neighborhood range from 300 - 400k. Not sure if buying at this price range with noise is a good idea!

What are your thoughts?
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Old 07-31-2007, 06:55 PM
303 posts, read 928,235 times
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When we looked for homes I didn't even go inside the house, if it was next to a busy street. But someone lives in those homes, so I imagine there are people who don't mind that.
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Old 07-31-2007, 07:01 PM
Location: North Dallas
583 posts, read 2,470,522 times
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Breathe! Your neighborhood will have great resale potential. SBR even near 380 is desirable. I am in the same area and only in the mornings do we ever notice the gentle hum of HWY 380.
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Old 07-31-2007, 09:20 PM
6,584 posts, read 23,662,430 times
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I lived next to a moderately busy two lane road in San Diego once and I'll never do that again. It's one of those things where you underestimate it's impact until later on. I even lived next to an active train track once and it was nothing compared to the constant car noise.

In my area, the homes that back up to the busy roads, do not sell as fast. I don't know what happens to the price.
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Old 08-01-2007, 08:21 AM
32,537 posts, read 51,063,879 times
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your realtor might be glossing over the negatives to avoid losing the sale...
the question is ---can you get out of the deal without incurring any financial penalties at this point?

hard to say how other people would view location since there are so many factors which enter into choosing a house--people who don't really spend time outside might not care--you might have to drop the price on resale just to get a buyer that would overshadow the location...
how many OTHER lots on that side of street have sold homes?
ask one of those people if they live in house what it is like--some people might be honest -- some might not

traffic may not be that bad now but believe me it will only get worse as time goes on...all traffic in any growing town does...

have you driven there and just sat in the car with windows open--no radio--at night and early in morning...we looked at neighborhood adjacent to busy intersection in Tarrant co where new subdivision was going in--traffic was busy and could be heard Sunday mornings--Monday nights--did not matter---our lot would have had backyard facing into intersection...
other lots on different streets, facing different directions had different noise levels...

positives would be greenbelt and trees to cut down on noise somewhat--there is privacy with no houses to overlook your backyard...

to me--that location would be a negative because I have an outside cat that travels--does not go very far but I would not want to take a chance on having him go out to busy road...noise would also worry me...but my neighborhood is 20 years old and is not really close to any freeway--only city streets--and at night I can be outside and hear the freeway noise from one more than a mile away--sound travels...
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Old 08-01-2007, 10:22 AM
23 posts, read 160,534 times
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Thanks everyone.
At this point I will incur a large financial penalty. I don't believe that my agent did me right, even though he was referred to me by 2 co-workers.

In any case, there are about 10 lots on the cul de sac. Half have been purchased in the last year. I can only pray that things will work out in the future if I do try to sell.
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Old 08-01-2007, 11:02 AM
Location: TX
3,033 posts, read 11,026,268 times
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ok since you in... plant your trees and bushes as soon as you can. You'll be surprized at how much they will grow in 5 years. Ask at the nursury what are the best fast growers... put in a mix of evergreens and dudicious (so you still have a barrier in winter!) Leeland cypress grows like crazy here (NOVA) like 5ft a year. Costco carries fairly big ones in the spring for about 60.00.
If you can get you back fence planted before fall it will be worth it in 2 years!

here's a site for fast growing TX trees... Texas Trees

You just said your on a cul de sac and that a plus as well.

Once the area grows you and your neighbors might be able to get the city to put in a stone barrier along the busy road as well. Those work surprizingly good as a sound barrier.
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Old 08-01-2007, 11:35 AM
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bet the developer had to do a stone wall for sound barrier and to prevent car wrecks from coming into yards--most developers around here have to do something like that now--especially if they are on busy road or if it is a commercial development going in next to resedential one--as sound/sight barrier...

how big is the lot--how far back is the back fence line and how far behind in through the green belt to the road--everything is relative--is it a half acre lot? or quarter acre--makes a difference

the one or two things I would see if I could negotiate with builder -- is it Highland?
1) before the HOA becomes active--can't happen until most of homes have been sold to private owners so builder IS the HOA until then and what builder oks works and is grandfathered into HOA limits--that YOU have right to have a higher fence than normal on that boundary line of green belt--like 8 ft fence instead of 6 which is probably normal height allowed--
you would be surprised what an additional 2 ft can do for sight/sound abatement--
2) see if builder will put in at no extra cost--more sound efficient windows especially on second floor on that side since it will be above whatever landscaping you put in or maybe some sun screens--I think they have some sound baffle qualities as well --maybe that is something yur realtor can get builder to agree to for you since did not seem to really be looking out for your interests before

(and I say that because my realtor has steered me away from several homes that either back or front to busy streets...when we decided not to offer contract on one house that was really a nice one becasue it backed to busy street and we had roaming cat--she totally understood...so I think some realtors do care about more than a commission check and act as a buyer's agent--not just someone facilitating a sale)

how many lots on your side have sold already compared to other side that does not back to greenbelt/road? the fact that it is a cul-de-sac street is probably one point in your favor on re-sale...
maybe your realtor could find someone to buy your contract now since there is a "pool" of willing home buyers...

plus like the other posted said--to put in something that will grow tall and dense---and be an evergreen--

Last edited by loves2read; 08-01-2007 at 11:55 AM..
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Old 08-01-2007, 05:16 PM
3,035 posts, read 13,605,783 times
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Unless you are buying in an exclusive area where buyers are lined up waiting for homes to go on the market, traffic noise will ALWAYS affect resale.

Even affected resale in the Socal market during the heyday when homes were typically on the market for hours, not months.

In a market like DFW where there are over 8k homes on the MLS, you need to seriously consider this as a potential negative. If this is a new home that's a spec, try to beat them down at least 15%. This is what I've seen specs sell for below comparables when the spec either faced or backed up to a noisy road.

Here in TX, I'd have to say the safest bet is a quiet interior lot that does not face power lines, busy roads, etc. If you want a greenbelt lot, try to find one that faces other homes on the other side of the greenbelt. The Trails of West Frisco has alot of these for example because it has large trails throughout the community. Good luck
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Old 08-01-2007, 05:41 PM
Location: Dallas, Texas
473 posts, read 1,958,881 times
Reputation: 322
Is there a thoroughfare plan for the road behind your house? In other words, is it an arterial that might be WIDENED? If so, greenbelt will be bulldozed for additional lanes that will be closer to your back fence. Sorry, but it happens. The city might be able to provide info. I know that many cities will have an overall thoroughfare plan that outlines which roads are planned to be widened and when.
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