Neighborhood living and ways to be a good neighbor – learn tips on how to maintain your home for ultimate neighborhood appeal!
* Kudzu just asked its Facebook fans what kind thing they had done for a neighbor recently, and the responses fell into two distinct camps–(1) they don’t know their neighbors at all, or they are on bad terms, or (2) they brought them veggies from their gardens, helped them weed or cared for their dog, or shared expenses for a mutually-beneficial repair. This got me thinking about how there are lots of ways to be a good neighbor, and not all of them involve the touchy-feely stuff.
* You know the old saying: good fences make good neighbors. This can be very true. A good fence can look nice, keep dogs and/or children in or out, and can offer some privacy. If you’re having some neighbor problems, maybe it’s time for a fence like the one pictured. Remember to adhere to any local ordinances or homeowners association covenants about fence height or style, as well as which way the “good side” is supposed to face (usually it’s toward the neighbors).
* More neighborly habits, whether or not you have a homeowners association that requires them, include keeping your lawn mowed, cutting overgrown bushes and trees (especially if they create a safety hazard by getting in the way of pedestrians or blocking the vision of drivers), repainting as needed, keeping front yard clutter to a minimum,(garbage cans, bikes, toys, and so on) (and, by the way, if you have this much garbage, you might be surprised to find out how much is recycleable–why not ask about your city’s program? It’s usually easy to participate), and being courteous when you or visitors park cars that you are not blocking your neighbors in any way. Have teens who are now driving their own cars? You may want to consider a “parking pad” for an extra car so you can keep it off the street, or a turnaround driveway so that you don’t have to go out and do the “daily shuffle” with the cars.
*If you know and like your neighbors (or want to), you can go a step further. Consider putting a gate in the fence between your two yards so the kids can come over to play. Add a front yard fire pit (isn’t this fire pit beautiful?) and invite neighbors to visit. I rode my bike through a neighborhood today where I saw numerous examples of front-yard benches, picnic tables, tree houses, and more signs that neighbors know and hang out with each other! You know what? It was nice.
Another neighborly thing to do? Recommend service pros you like and trust. In fact, that’s exactly what Kudzu lets you do, with more neighbors than just the ones in your neighborhood. Check it out for some truly helpful advice. More neighbor tips? See Get to Know the Neighbors Better. Or not.