As a parent living in the city, one of the major things you need to consider is how to find a kid-friendly neighborhood. Aside from factors you would normally consider when apartment hunting, moving with kids means you need to put more on your must-have list than simply “affordable rent.” As you embark on the apartment hunting process, be sure to keep these tips in mind so you can find the perfect kid-friendly neighborhood for you and your little (or not so little) ones.

Consider the Neighborhood

Just as you did when apartment hunting prior to having kids, it’s important to narrow down your search to a few neighborhoods. Obviously, when you have children, safety is priority #1. Make a list of potential neighborhoods; then do some research about the crime statistics in each one. You likely won’t be surprised to find out that the area you would have loved to live in during your child-free days (helloooo nightlife) is no longer appealing when you have kids. Pick approximately three kid-friendly neighborhoods, and limit your apartment search to those areas.

Location, Location, Location

The safety of a neighborhood isn’t the only thing you have to consider when hunting for a kid-friendly neighborhood–amenities are important too. Are there good public schools nearby? You don’t want your children to have to walk too far or have to navigate public transportation on their own. What about parks and playgrounds? When your kids are little balls of energy and you don’t have a backyard, having these amenities nearby could prove essential to preserving your sanity.

Talk to the Neighbors

Be sure to talk to your soon-to-be neighbors before you sign the lease. Do they have kids? And, if so, would they agree that the neighborhood is kid friendly? This can also be an excellent opportunity to get to know your neighbors and set up some future play dates for your kids.