Congratulations on becoming a Homeowner! From apartment living, to your very own home with a yard, we are here to help you along the way. Here are a few housekeeping rules to follow to keep a good relationship with your neighbors.
Once you’ve settled into your new home, be sure to introduce yourself as soon as you can. (If your neighbors haven't already stopped by). You want to start an open communication with your neighbor as soon as you can. Nothing is more awkward than living next door for three years and then having to ask to borrow a cup of sugar. (Don't be that neighbor!)
Plus, knowing who your neighbors are can keep everyone safe in case of an emergency as well as to alert you if there are any intruders in the area. Having an open communication with your neighbors puts you off to a great start in the event of addressing any future concerns. There are also helpful social apps to help you communicate with everyone in your neighborhood, such as NextDoor. It’s free to use and keeps you in the loop with what’s happening in your neighborhood!
Be Mindful of Quiet Hours
Having your own home may mean no more sharing walls with neighbors; however, it doesn’t necessarily mean you can throw loud parties every weekend. Check with your Home Owner Association, if you have one, to see what the quiet hours are for your neighborhood. A good rule of thumb to keep in mind for quiet hours is anything between 9 pm – 9 am. Even if you don’t have an HOA, your neighbors will appreciate you more when you respect quiet hours by mowing your lawn later in the day and not at 7 am.
Instill Pet-Friendly Behaviors
Apartment living may have had designated doggy waste baskets, your new neighborhood might not, so be sure to pick up after your pets and dispose of the waste bags properly. Remember not everyone is a dog or cat lover, so keep your pets on a leash and off the neighbor’s lawn. Again, be courteous of quiet hours and don’t let your dog bark at night. Check with your HOA for pet regulations.
Now that you have a yard, you’re required to give it some TLC. Keep your yard tidy, and avoid letting it turn in to a jungle. Since this may be your first house, you probably don’t have a lawn mower or any yard tools. Consider hiring a professional for lawn care, until you can invest in the proper lawn tools. Asking your friends or neighbors if you can borrow their tools may be a great conversation starter, however, remember to keep the favors to a minimum. Remember to try and keep toys, bikes, and other removable items stored away after using them. You may not be the gardening type or home decorator, but your neighbors will appreciate you keeping your outdoor home clean.
Respect Your neighbors
If you are planning on having a party, be sure to invite your neighbors. Limit the number of guests you invite over to a reasonable number. Creating an open conversation with your neighbors is important by having small-talk from time to time, but don’t extend long conversations every time you run into each other. Give each other space and privacy.
Also, be mindful of your guest parking in front of the neighbor’s yard. If your home does not have a garage or driveway, your front curbside is your designated parking place. Check to see what the city or HOA parking protocol is before letting your guess park in front of someone’s yard. A good rule of thumb is to only park in front of your property curb and not to exceed over towards your neighbors. While it may be legal to park, it could stir trouble or a bad taste in other people’s mouths.
Overall, the best way to have good neighbors is to start by being a good neighbor yourself. Enjoy your new home and neighborhood. Be sure to let us know what you do to be a good neighbor, by leaving a comment below!