Buying a Home? What’s the Walk Score, Bike Score, or Transit Score?

Posted by Duane Duggan on Wednesday, October 10th, 2018 at 11:20am.

Today, more and more people looking to buy a home are trying to get along without a car, avoid traffic, and reduce their gasoline bill.

Using a patented system, Walk Score® is a free website and app that measures the walkability of any address. It is based on a point system where amenities within a five-minute walk are given maximum points. Using a declining system, points are assigned for amenities that are up to a 30- minute walk, with no points awarded after 30 minutes. It also uses an algorithm to analyze pedestrian friendliness by reviewing population density and road metrics like block length and intersection density. 

The Walk Score® Point system is based on the scale below:

In our local multiple listing service, IRES, you can search for properties based on their Walk Score® categories shown above. People who would like to get along without a car would search for a high walk score. Alternatively, those who want to get away from it all could search for a low walk score. The search field looks like this:

On September 24, 2018 when I was writing this article, 75 out of 252 condos and single-family homes in the city of Boulder were rated at “Very Walkable,” scoring 70 points or above.

Currently on IRES, there is only the ability to search for Walk Score®. However, technology is expanding, and scores are now available for biking and transit.

Bike Score® measures how good an area is for getting from place to place by bike. The Bike Score® is calculated for a given location using an algorithm that pulls in data such as bike infrastructure, hills, trails, road connectivity, and the number of bike commuters. The Bike Score point system looks like this:

Transit Score® is a patented measure of how well a location is served by public transit. Transit Score® is based on data released in a standard format by public transit agencies. To calculate a Transit Score®, a "usefulness" value is assigned to nearby transit routes based on the frequency, type of route (rail, bus, etc.), and distance to the nearest stop on the route. The point system for Transit Score® looks like this:

Go to and type in your address where you live or a home you are considering. If you are looking for a home, you can ask your Realtor® to utilize the Walk Score® search feature on the IRES Multiple Listing Service. 


About Duane Duggan: Duane Duggan has been a Realtor® for RE/MAX of Boulder in Colorado since 1982 and has facilitated over 2,500 transactions over his career, the vast majority from repeat and referred clients. He has been awarded two of the highest honors bestowed by RE/MAX International: the Lifetime Achievement Award and the Circle of Legends Award. Living the life of a Realtor and being immersed in real estate led to the inception of his book, REALTOR® for Life. Also see his video podcasts about real estate topics on RE/MAX of Boulder’s YouTube channel.

For questions, email Duane at or call 303-441-5611


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