Overview of Shaker Heights
Living in Shaker Heights can be expensive, but living costs are not necessarily prohibitive. Per bestplace.net, Shaker Heights is expensive for Ohio, with housing costs far exceeding the state average. However, median home costs still fell short of the national average.
Many of the homes in Shaker Heights were built in the 1920s and 1930s and are meticulously maintained by owners. There are also many condo, apartment, and small-family home rentals for buyers.
Residents here live right next to the best recreation and entertainment in Northeast Ohio. Next door, University Circle contains the Cleveland Orchestra, two universities, blooming parks, and world-renowned museums. By car, it’s easy to explore Downtown Cleveland for a day trip or attend a sports game.
Here’s a deeper look into everything Shaker Heights has to offer.
Choosing the right neighborhood is easy in Shaker Heights — there are nine stellar options. Each of the city’s neighborhoods is distinct yet provides a small-town feel unique to Shaker Heights. Buyers can search in areas like Boulevard, which offers a mix of single-family homes, condos, and apartments. Families love its location right next to the high school.
Another favorite with young families is Fernway. This neighborhood feels like a mini-town with its rows of residential streets dappled with greenery. Fernway Elementary is within walking distance, as well as outdoor spots like the Duck Pond and Green Lake. To pinpoint the best neighborhood for you, contact a trusted local agent.
Outdoor recreation abounds in Shaker Heights. Nature is always close at hand when you feel like getting outside. Thornton Park is a popular spot year-round. Jump into the 50-meter swimming pool to cool off in the summer, or hit the Ice Arena that’s open all year. This is the ultimate spot to play or enjoy the outdoors, as it also features a tennis court, sand volleyball, a nature trail, and sledding in the winter.
The Nature Center at Shaker Lakes also provides trails, programs, and opportunities for community involvement. Spanning 20 acres, this park features gardens, marsh, forest, and a lake. Visitors can stroll through the exhibits to learn all about the native life in the area. Kids can meet the animals up close and see nature-inspired art. To admire the diverse nature, walk the paved All Peoples’ Trail for a quick view of the grounds. Guests can also venture out onto the Sterns Trail for extensive views.
Tips for buying a home
Partner with an agent
As a buyer starting a search, the best step to take is to partner with a local agent like Adam Kaufman. He thoroughly understands the city’s different neighborhoods and housing options. With this information, Adam helps you assess pros and cons, leading to the best outcome for you. He leverages local market trends toward your offer and negotiations with sellers. With a local agent like Adam on your side, you can access the resources and information you need for a successful home search.
Early in your home search, consider getting pre-approved for a mortgage. For one, many sellers check whether prospective buyers are pre-approved to narrow the buyer pool. Your offer will carry more weight with sellers with pre-approval in hand.
The pre-approval process can take some time, so it’s best to complete it before looking for properties. To increase your chances of qualifying for a good rate, maintain a healthy credit score and a low debt-to-income ratio. Buyers can search for assistance through city, state, and federal avenues. In Cleveland, for example, the Cuyahoga County Down Payment Assistance Program offers city-level loans and grants.
Negotiate a strong offer
When you’ve found a home you love, negotiate your offer with a seller. To make an offer, an agent will help you include details about yourself, the offer price, a deadline to respond, and any contingencies. Home appraisal and inspection contingencies are commonly included (buyers also typically add an earnest money deposit to show sellers they’re serious). Next, wait for a seller to accept, reject, or make a counteroffer. Enter negotiations with predetermined factors that you’re willing to bargain on and that aren’t negotiable.
Ready to move to Shaker Heights?
*Header photo courtesy of Adam Kaufman