Good Neighbors vs. Bad Neighbors
Whether you’re moving into a new neighborhood or someone is moving next door to you, there are a few simple golden rules one must follow in order to keep the peace between property lines. Blasting music, not taking care of your lawn, and having large parties every night are just a few behaviors of a bad neighbor.
Yeah, don’t be that person.
The key to being a good neighbor boils down to this: have some consideration for other people that live around you. You want to be friendly and respectful of your neighbor because they do live next to you. That’s really the long and short of it.
A good neighbor takes pride in their home and surroundings, which also helps keep property values up. You don’t have to be perfect and neither does your neighbor but by building a friendly repertoire and establishing open communication, you will make your home and community a much more pleasant place to call home. So what makes a good neighbor versus a bad neighbor?
You’re a Good Neighbor if:
- You welcome neighbors with a smile and introduce yourself. A simple wave or greeting when you see each other can open the lines of communication and establish a positive and friendly relationship with your neighbor. This is especially important in the very beginning as first impressions can make or break a relationship with your neighbor.
- Help your neighbor carry groceries or large, heavy items that they are having trouble doing alone. It’s not fun moving a couch when you only went outside to get the mail, but it will create a perfect precedent with your neighbor.
- You keep your dog from barking all hours of the night and clean up after their mess. Invest in a bark collar if need be.
- Check on their mail when they’re out of town to prevent a pile of paper from getting out of control. Just don’t open it because, you know, that’s a felony.
- Keep your property well maintained (lawn mowed and irrigated, trees and shrubs trimmed, weeds cut, leaves raked, trash lids closed, etc.). It helps the entire neighborhood look more enticing and makes it a more pleasant place to live.
- Invite your neighbors over for a casual get-together like a potluck or just drinks to get to know them on a personal level. Ask them questions about where they are from, their lifestyle, what they like to do, or even suggest some great restaurants if they are new to town.
- Look out for strangers lurking around your neighbor’s home and call them just in case they are unaware or out of town.
- Lend a tool, ladder, or cup of sugar when your neighbor is in need.
- If you have kids, set play dates so your children can bond and establish their own friendships.
- Let your neighbor know if you plan to have a large party or event in your home. Keep the noise level to a minimum and provide your phone number so they can call you if they feel the noise is getting out of hand. Don’t host a Metallica concert at 2am on a Tuesday night, basically.
- Host a garage sale and ask your neighbor if they would like to contribute some of their gently used items.
You’re a Bad Neighbor if:
- You blast your music throughout the night.
- Don’t clean up after your pets.
- Don’t mow the lawn or keep up with the exterior maintenance of your home.
- If you’re a condominium resident, the hallway is not a part of your residence. Keep personal belongings inside your unit.
- Not returning any items you borrow from your neighbor.
- Have multiple people over and take up too many parking spaces or blocking your neighbor’s driveway.
- Gossip about people in the neighborhood.
- Not take down your holiday decorations well after the season has passed.
- Attend the block party empty-handed.
- Leave notes on your neighbor’s door about complaints or concerns instead of discussing them in person.
- You don’t recycle, put out the trash on collection day. You also overfill the garbage cans and don’t close the lids.
- Don’t offer to help your neighbor carry heavy items.
- Don’t control your bonfire or BBQ smoke that can waft into your neighbor’s yard or space.