When we started working on last year’s neighborhoods to watch issue, I had just moved into my new place in Roscoe Village. My editor’s note was devoted to singing the praises of where I live, and I’m happy to say I am still madly in love with my neighborhood. In general, I’ve found ways to enjoy every neighborhood I’ve ever lived in. When I was in California, I spent the whole time living in West LA. I moved only once while I was there, and it was just a few blocks over. I was a short drive or a long walk to the beach, and I was close to my gym, my favorite Ralphs grocery store, three different Whole Foods, two art theaters and the best Thai food in the city, Siam Chan. There were annoying things about my neighborhood, of course, but clearly not annoying enough for me to set up shop somewhere else. There is no such thing as perfection, and those that seek to attain such a mythical beast will be disappointed. While a good Realtor could convince any person to live in any neighborhood, a great Realtor is one that can find the right home in the neighborhood that fits the client. It is important to know what’s appealing about every neighborhood you cover – and some you don’t – just in case you find a fantastic home for you client in a location that he/she is not familiar with. Additionally, if your client finds a great home in a neighborhood that might not be right for them, it is your job to let them know the truth. There will be other houses for that family, so don’t stuff them in a neighborhood where they will be miserable. To help you with your task of knowing what’s out there, we’ve found seven up-and-coming neighborhoods that might be right for one of your clients. In our cover story, you’ll see two city neighborhoods and five suburban towns/villages that have a lot to offer in 2009. Some of them may be new to you, while others deserve a second glance. One last thing to remember is that just because you aren’t a fan of a neighborhood, that doesn’t mean it is wrong for your clients. Do your best to step outside yourself and really consider you clients’ needs before finding them a place to live. Some of your clients aren’t just buying a new home, they’re looking for a brand new lifestyle.