Tips for Getting to Know Your Neighbours
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Foster Community Development with your Neighbours

November 30, 2016

Neighbour Meet-up

Getting to know your neighbours might seem like an intimidating task, but by taking action, you help create a shared sense of belonging and identity in your community. If we all know and communicate with each other, we can have a happier neighbourhood.

Here are a few tips for getting to know your neighbour, and why it matters.

Say Hello

Firstly, a smile and a hello to people you see on your street can go a long way to building a relationship. Find a way to introduce yourself, whether it's asking them about their dog, or complimenting their lawn. Share what you like about the area, and ask them what they like. Perhaps you will find some common ground.

New to the Neighbourhood

Maybe you've just moved to the neighbourhood. If you are, introduce yourself to the people in your immediate vicinity. Ask them about the community. Ask them about themselves. Ask them about what's going on in the community and ways you can connect. Most communities have a way to get to know the people, like a local community groups, residents associations, or volunteer opportunities. There are also exercise and activity groups that you could join as well. Facebook and Meetup.com are great places to start looking for activities in your community.

If you have a new neighbour, this is a great way time to introduce them to you and the community too. Offer to answer any questions they might have. Mention when garbage is picked up, what the best grocery store is, what the good restaurants are, where you can hop on a bus, or perhaps tell them about the local facilities. Let them know about local groups and ways they can participate.

Why It Matters

Getting to know your neighbours can have multiple benefits.

Safety

By getting to know your neighbours, you'll find out what they do and vice versa. If you get a feel for who lives where and what their schedules are, you'll all be better able to recognize if something is wrong. If you communicate fairly frequently, you'll know the difference between a house guest and a stranger. If you or your neighbour is going out of town and you have a relationship, you could ask each other to check on the house, water the plants, and keep an eye out for any unusualy activity.

Consideration

Getting to know your neighbours can also help prevent common problems that arise. For example, if you have an event coming up, and you know your house might be loud, give your neighbours a heads up when it's happening. If your neighbours have a different schedule from you, like working nights, think about adjusting your lawn mowing schedule so you're not waking them up. If you have designated parking, make sure to stay within it on a regular basis. Then when you need an extra spot, or have a number of guests over, your neighbours might be more receptive to sharing that space when you have guests coming. 

Offers to Help

When we help others, they are more likely to help us. If you notice your neighbour has a broken leg, offer to walk her dog. If your neighbour has small kids and you have teenagers, see if they would like your son or daughter to babysit. If your neighbour has shoveled your walk, try getting theirs next time. The more often we do this, the more likely it is that we will have good neighbours, but maybe over time, good friends as well.

Get to know your neighbours in the following Harmony Park communities:

  • Boulder Creek Estates in Langdon offers a small town feeling, and lots of space for your family to grow with reasonably priced Estate homes and lots.
  • Heritage Hills in Cochrane is the perfect city escape with views of the Canadian Rocky Mountains, with townhomes and single family homes to suit any budget.
  • Spring Valley Estates in Airdrie is coming soon, and offers more variety with condos, starter homes, and estates.