We have seen Hollywood movies and the horror stories they make about neighbors. While some of these are true, know that these are exceptions and not rules. For the most part, you’ll grow fond of your neighbors. Yes, even the nosy ones. As long as they don’t encroach on your space and invade your privacy, you’ll eventually grow to like them. But take a long look at your neighborly spirits, too. Are you being a good neighbor yourself?
Being in good terms with your neighbors can come in handy. You can ask them for recommendations if you need a vinyl fence contractor. You can ask for a stick of butter if you run out of it. You can exchange Christmas cookies. You can ask them to look over your house if you’re going on a vacation.
In return, you should strive to be a good neighbor as well. Simply saying hi and hello to your neighbors when you go out in the morning to pick up the newspaper is an amazing thing for the community. Besides, what will you gain by arguing with a neighbor? It is stressful to be banging heads with a neighbor all the time.
Do Your Part
The reason why neighbors argue is because one or all of them are not doing their part in building up the community. Every neighborhood has a few unwritten rules (and written ones for gated communities with homeowner’s association). If you don’t follow such rules, you’ll end up arguing with your neighbors over every tiny rule that you break.
For example, the “unwritten” rule is for everyone to take their trash out at a specific time so the garbage collectors can pick them up. If you constantly don’t follow this rule, you are being an irresponsible and inconsiderate neighbor. The point of such synchronized garbage collection is so that the waste sitting by the curbside won’t pile up. These plastic bags of garbage ruin the look of the neighborhood. Not to mention that the smell will eventually get to your neighbors’ yards.
The key to being a good neighbor is to be considerate of their property, feelings, and idiosyncrasies. Respecting your neighbors’ rights is the key to a harmonious relationship. For example, if you are going to have a fence constructed in your property, make sure that your neighbor agrees to it. Make sure that you are not encroaching on your neighbor’s property. Also, try to schedule the construction when they are not at home, so you don’t bother them too much.
Are going to have guests over? Ask your neighbors if it’s okay for your guests to park in front of their houses. Street-side parking is public property, but it shows consideration to ask your neighbors if they need to use their street parking space.
Speaking of having guests over, you should also keep the noise down even though your neighbors said it’s okay. Imagine how you would feel if you wake up in the middle of the night because your neighbor is having a party. Sure, it’s part of being part of a community but if you have an 8 AM presentation at work tomorrow, it’s going to be annoying.
Watch Their House
Offer to watch over your neighbors’ houses when they are away on a vacation. You can water their plants, feed their pets, and keep an eye on their things while they aren’t at home. This won’t take much of your time. You only need to do it a couple of times each day. Also, you can expect them to do the same thing for you when you go on a vacation yourself.
Maintain Your Property
A property is a personal space. But while your neighbors shouldn’t have opinions over how you design your home’s interior, they can be offended by how unkempt your yard looks like. What many homeowners don’t understand is that their yards are a reflection of the neighborhood. If you don’t clean your front yard, this will affect the value of the properties of your neighbors. So, if they want to sell their homes, they might have a hard time finding a buyer because of how your yard looks.
Mind Your Pets
You adore your pets. You think they are the cutest ever. That doesn’t mean others feel the same way. Make sure to clean up after your pets if you’re going to walk them. Quiet your pets when they are making a ruckus. Make sure they are safe inside your house or yard. They shouldn’t be running around the neighborhood scaring adults and kids alike.
Being a great neighbor is not rocket science. The keyword is respect. If you give respect, you earn it back. If you are considerate of others, you can expect them to be considerate of you, too. These all lie on the principle of giving and hopefully, taking the same in return.