Neighborhoods are foundations for strong communities to grow, where people trust and rely on one another and where neighbors can come together to make their community a better place. However, in order to see all the benefits that come with living in a good neighborhood, it’s important to do your part by being a good neighbor. While that doesn’t mean you have to become best friends with everyone on your street, you also don’t want to become the neighbor nobody likes.
Whether you just moved in or are the long-standing family on the block, there are some easy things you can do to be the neighbor everyone wishes they had.
When you notice a new family moving in, don’t wait too long to introduce yourself. Bring a housewarming gift like fresh-cut flowers and a handwritten note with your contact information. For bonus points, give them a list of your favorite mechanic, home repair company and other local services they could find helpful.
Keep Up the Curb Appeal
Maintaining the exterior of your home helps to keep property values high and your neighbors happy. Don’t let grass or weeds become overgrown, put away equipment and toys when not in use and power wash areas when needed.
Respecting your neighbor’s space is key to avoiding unnecessary conflict.
• Be mindful of property lines and if anything on your side is encroaching on their side.
• Park politely so you aren’t blocking the path to their house.
• Keep noise down in the evening and early morning.
• Keep your pet leashed outside and make sure to always clean up after them.
Respecting your neighbor’s space also means recognizing those who would rather keep to themselves. While it never hurts to smile when passing by, don’t push the boundaries with someone who would rather skip the small talk.
Do Random Acts of Kindness
While you don’t have to go above and beyond all the time, doing a random act of kindness every now and then goes a long way. Maybe it’s shoveling their driveway after the first snowfall or dropping off a batch of freshly baked cookies. Whatever you do, it will be appreciated.
Keep the Noise Down
This is especially important the closer your next-door neighbor lives. Let them know ahead of time about an upcoming party, and to alert you if things get too loud. Avoid loud activities in the late evening and early morning.
Get the Neighborhood Together
Plan a night to gather everyone together to get to know each other a little better. It can be as simple as a potluck block party. If your neighborhood doesn't have a way to communicate with everyone, create a Facebook group or email list for people to easily share news or ask for help.
Keep an Eye Out
Watching out for your neighbors and their property is a small way to show you care, and they’re also likely to return the favor. Help keep your neighborhood safe by taking note of anything suspicious and letting your neighbors know. Call 9-1-1 for active crime or emergencies or contact your local non-emergency line for things out of the ordinary.