Photo by Mathyas Kurmann
Whether you’re in a new suburban neighborhood or recently moved in your new condo, you can feel more at home when you know the people than when you don’t. Staying aloof and keeping to yourself might work when you were a kid, but it won’t be the same once you turn into an adult. You have to get along with your neighbors to ensure you live in a peaceful community.
You might find it easy to get along with a bunch of people. Meanwhile, you might find some people in your community won’t warm up to so easily. Sometimes you have to conjure a few tricks from your sleeves to make them open up to you. If you have a hard time being friendly with the neighbors, here are ten things you can do to become their friend.
1. Be the first one to say hello
When new in a place, first impression matters. You should always be the one to wave and give a friendly smile. It doesn’t matter if you’re tired from carrying boxes. You should appear welcoming and open for small talk. It makes people think you’re friendly.
2. Schedule a time for exploring the community
You won’t meet people by staying indoors all the time. You also get a chance of catching up with others while walking their dogs, tending to their gardens or lounging in their patio. Take daily morning or evening walks to meet new friends. You can ask your neighbors about local restaurants, dog-friendly parks, and community events. Asking about garbage collection is schedule is another way to break the ice.
3. Go old-school
Try the traditional route and bring some gifts when you visit your neighbor. Some communities still offer housewarming gifts to new families in the neighborhood. If someone does bring you something, you should return the favor. You can bake a batch of cookies using your mom’s secret recipe. But if you don’t have a knack for baking, then you can opt for local pastries near Ardia Vermosa.
4. Give out compliments
Always be a giver. If offering some goodies is stretching it too far, then you should hand out compliments. Marveling at your neighbor’s new paint job, well-maintained lawn, or the design of their home is free. You can easily get at thumbs up when you are generous with compliments. The next time you bump into the couple next door, you should try commenting on how great their blooms are.
5. Exchange numbers
Giving your phone number or home landline is a sign of trust. It means you’re letting the person be part of your inner circle. It also means your placing your neighbor in the list of emergency contacts you have. It’s now easy to invite their family over the next time you plan to have a mini celebration. Most of all, you’ll know who to call once your pet gets out of your backyard.
6. Make plans
Improving your relationship with people doesn’t end. Talking to them now and then is great, but you have to go out and do activities eventually. Grabbing a cup of coffee or a few rounds of beer are some things you can do to connect with them. If you want to get to know the people on your block without having to invite them one by one, then you should set up a housewarming party. It’s fun, and it brings people together. It also helps you get to know the people in your neighborhood without feeling pressured about it.
7. Find out who’s nearby
If you’re relocating to a different community, you should look for a friendly face in the neighborhood. You can look into your social networks to find out who’s nearby. Your school’s alumni association, church group, and other organizations you belong are some of the places you can look for friends and associates who might be in the same neighborhood as you are.
8. Discover shared interests
Similar to other relationships in your life, there’s bound to be common interest that you and your neighbor both enjoy. It might be a passion for home decor, gardening, or triathlons. Whatever it is, you can use it to bond over and build your relationship. If they have kids the same age as yours, you can schedule a playdate. If not, you can always tag along to his or her weekly sessions at the gym or favorite nail salon.
9. Visit popular communal areas
There’s bound to be an area where your neighbors frequent. Some people spend their weekends at the clubhouse. Others set up a meeting point at the jogging trail. It can also be the tennis courts or the park near the city center. You should spend time in these places, so you could chance upon your neighbors. Bring a book to read, walk your dog, or take your family to strike a conversation with people you only see when you throw the trash.
10. Deliver mail personally
If you live in an apartment, there’s a chance their letter gets mixed up with yours. You should take advantage of this opportunity. Knock to their door and introduce yourself. It might seem logical to slip the mail under their door or leave their letter in the mailbox. But if your goal is to make some friends, then you should go ahead and deliver their mail personally.
Making friends with your neighbor is not as difficult as you think. As long as you don’t let your awkwardness and shyness get in the way, you’ll be fine. In time, you’ll learn to enjoy the company of your neighbors and the people around you.