We’ve heard nightmare neighbor stories, and some of us have even been unfortunate enough to experience them first-hand. If you haven’t been so unfortunate, you may think that bad neighbors are just a nuisance, but bad neighbors can significantly diminish the quality of your time in your home. None of us want to be that bad neighbor, of course, but sometimes we may need some help understanding exactly what being a good neighbor entails. So what makes a good neighbor? Keep reading for four tips to keep you squarely in “good neighbor” territory!
A Good Neighbor Is Friendly
Not overly so, of course, your neighbors are not necessarily your friends. However, a nod and a smile will almost certainly be welcome. It doesn’t take much, just a friendly “good morning” or “hello” can go a long way! In addition to being friendly to your neighbors when you pass them in the neighborhood, make sure to be just as friendly and welcoming to new neighbors. If your neighborhood has a friendly community in place already, it may be difficult for new neighbors to feel like they’re part of the group. Taking the time and making the effort to reach out to new neighbors can be a rewarding experience for both parties!
A Good Neighbor Respects Quiet Hours
This isn’t to say that you should be completely quite all the time, but it’s important to respect your community’s quiet hours. Good neighbors don’t have parties with loud music into the late house of the night, they don’t let their dogs bark and make noise early on a Sunday morning, and they are respectful of other people. Even the most considerate neighbor may slip up however, and not notice if they’re bothering their neighbors. A good neighbor will be receptive if you ever request them to quiet down, and accept your request graciously. If you find yourself on the receiving end of such a request, be sure to respond with the same kindness and respect.
A Good Neighbor Knows When To Be Helpful
Offering your neighbors help when they need it is a surefire way to score good neighbor points. If you have elderly neighbors that may be having trouble clearing snow from their driveway, don’t hesitate to offer assistance. See your neighbor struggling to lift heavy groceries? Offer a helping hand if you’re able to. Of course, make sure you’re not being overbearing. Very rarely will a genuine offer of assistance be poorly received, but if you sense that your offers are not wanted, don’t be pushy. Some neighbors prefer to keep their distance, and that’s ok too!
Good Neighbors Keep The Neighborhood Tidy
A clean and tidy neighborhood benefits everyone, and is in turn everyone’s responsibility. Your front yard in part of your neighbor’s neighborhood, and a neglected or messy front yard detracts from their neighborhood. Make sure to respect common areas and clean after yourself. Don’t leave your trash out, don’t let your lawn become overgrown, keep on top of weeding your lawn, and store any tools or toys away at the end of the day. Seasonal decorations such as Christmas lights and Halloween decorations should not be disruptive to your neighbors, and should be taken down in a timely manner.
Being a good neighbor essentially boils down to “treat others as you would like to be treated”. If you wouldn’t like to wake up on your day off to a neighbor mowing the lawn at 7am, don’t do it to your neighbors. Be courteous, friendly, and polite to your neighbors, and receptive should they approach you with any issue.