A Multi-Family Home

Guide To Getting Along With New Neighbors In Close Quarters

by Arnold Gomez

If you are thinking about or planning a move into an apartment or rental where your neighbors are literally a wall away, start things off right. Make an effort to befriend and be courteous to these individuals to ensure a smooth and drama-free transition, and potentially avoid future conflict that can hinder enjoyment of your new digs.

Some tips to make nice with the new neighbors or tenants are:

Introduce yourself. Make an effort to introduce yourself to your new neighbors, but don't be intrusive about it. Look for an opportunity when your neighbor is out mowing his grass, at the mailbox, or when you see them in a common area. Be sure to be respectful and give a good first impression, to start things out right.

Plan a casual get-together. Talk with management about any community picnics or parties, which will give you a chance to meet and greet the new neighbors. Attend meetings or forums offered for residents that will provide further insight on who you are living next door to.

Don't get too involved. While it is important to be friendly with neighbors, it is not always wise to become friends. Stay away from the drama by keeping a bit of a distance from these individuals, providing everyone with privacy. Be wary of offering to do too much, such as babysitting or loaning money, to people that live next door to you; this will help avoid drama later on.

Follow the HOA rules. Prepare to follow some basic rules that many complexes and apartment buildings enforce, such as cleaning up after pets or keeping noise down at night. Failure to follow these simple but common guidelines can make you a pariah in the community before you even know who your neighbors are. Be respectful and don't give your neighbors any reason to become frustrated or even angry with you and your family.

Talk to management. If an issue should arise, don't take it upon yourself to address it with the neighbor. Talk with hoa management first, and avoid potential conflict by not reprimanding or arguing with your neighbor. This may also help clarify guidelines that may be unclear to you or your neighbor before conflict arises.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        

Start things out on the right foot with the new neighbors. Use these tips to prevent issues from coming between you and those that live in close proximity to your new dwelling. Address issues with the HOA management, rather than taking matters into your own hands, to ensure peace and prevent conflict in your new home!